Tutorial: How to paint cherries in watercolour

Cherries are some of my favourite fruits. They remind me of warm sunny days in France, on childhood holidays. I love their red-purple colour and shiny skins.

Painting cherries in watercolour is surprisingly easy. In this watercolour tutorial I’ll show you how to create the shape, highlight and drop rich colours and shadows in with wet-on-wet technique for a simple patter than can fill up a whole page in your sketchbook.

tutorial how to paint cherry fruit step by step watercolor

Supplies you will need

  • Watercolour paper
  • Watercolour paints
  • Round brush (preferably with fine point)
  • Water jars
  • Paper towels

Colours to try

  • Winsor Red Deep
  • Dioxazine Purple
  • Burnt Umber
  • Sap Green

All the watercolour paints I use are from Winsor and Newton’s Professional range, but you don’t need these exact shades. I’m using reds and purples to create the cherry colour.

Painting watercolour cherries – step by step

  1. Mix your red and purple paints together to create a deep cherry colour. Adding plenty of water, load up your brush and use the tip to create an outline. The top part is like a heart, with a rounded bottom. Outline a triangle inside that you will leave blank as white space, to create a highlight.
  2. Fill in the cherry shape with your paint, avoiding the highlight. Grabbing a slightly darker mix, touch your brush against the opposite side of your cherry to the highlight (i.e. bottom left side) and allow to blend out so it creates a shadow.
  3. Add a second cherry in the same way, allowing them to touch. Keep darkening the base with a little more mixture, adding more purple to create depth.
  4. Then add touches of pure red into the cherry and allow the paint to blend out naturally, creating rich colour variation.
  5. Using a brown paint, pull up a thin brown stem from each cherry so they meet at the top. Finish with a little green leaf and you’re done!

Now you can paint beautiful cherries in watercolour. Why not paint them scattered over a double page in your sketchbook, or add to other fruits for a delicious summer fruit salad painting?

Other fruit watercolour tutorials

Download my free watercolour supply guide

Feeling overwhelmed and confused by watercolour paints, papers and brushes? Download my free guide filled with insider info, including a list of good supplies for every budget, and my complete supply list!