Learn tips for mixing green watercolors. Green is one of my favorite colors to paint with. Luckily, it's a pretty easy color to mix and get a huge variety of greens without buying more paint.
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Mixing Green Watercolors
For this demonstration, I'm using Daniel Smith watercolors.
This set is perfect for making green because it comes with the perfect primary colors for mixing: warm red, warm yellow, warm blue, cool red, cool yellow and cool blue.
Using just these 6 colors, it's possible to make any color of green (or really any color!) you want.
To make pastel versions, you can add white watercolor paint or more water.
As I talked about in my post about mixing purple watercolors, mixing colors is a bit trickier than we learned in elementary school.
How to Make Green
Yes, yellow + blue = green, but each color has a temperature to consider.
Try these combinations to get a favorite shade of green:
- Cool yellow + cool blue
- Cool yellow + warm blue
- Warm yellow + warm blue
- Warm yellow + cool blue
According to color theory, you can make vibrant colors by mixing cool yellow with cool blue or warm blue. This creates bright green colors.
When you mix the warm yellow with the blues, the results are muddier olive greens, since they contain more red.
The warm yellow and cool blue creates a dark green that is almost black, which is a great color for shadows.
For even muddier versions of greens, consider adding a tiny bit of red. Be careful of how much you use though, because a little red goes a long ways!
You can also try mixing more or less of yellow or blue to create even more shades of green.
The top 2 rows show the variety of mixtures you can get by varying the amount of blue and yellow in your greens.
The bottom 2 rows show specialty mixtures using some pre-made greens from the Daniel Smith Jean Haines Master Artist Set. This lovely set includes 3 gorgeous granulating greens that almost shift colors.
The bottom row shows how you can get some really moody greens by mixing them with purples. I love these color combos.
Try mixing your greens with some unlikely combos to get some unique colors.
Ready to start painting? You might like this post on how to paint galaxy paintings.
My Favorite Ready Made Green Watercolors
When I was looking through my paints, I realized how much I love mixing my own green paint. So I only have 2 favorites so far.
Winsor & Newton Sap Green - I own several varieties of this color and it's my favorite. It's the perfect green without being too blue, so perfect for most foliage.
Holbein Leaf Green - This vibrant green color is so much fun. It's almost neon and feels so modern when added to a painting.
Be aware that it may not scan perfectly and is prone to fading.
You might also like:
- The Best Watercolor Paints for Beginners
- How to Mix Purple Watercolors
- Mixing Red Paint
- The Best Watercolor Palettes
- How to Mix Black Watercolors
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