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I’m an artist, self-taught designer, and educator who is hell-bent on teaching everyone how to get started with Islamic geometry.

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Beside writing super useful blog posts I also teach how to create Islamic geometric patterns



3 Watercolor Tips for Beginners


It’s so strange to me to be here talking about my 3 watercolor tips for beginners.

Until 2016 all my life was black and white. I dyed my hair black when I was 17, I wore black clothes until my 22, I drew black and white mandalas until I was 25. I don’t even know how I started using watercolours. Like what was I thinking? I hated colours. 

I’d never painted in my entire life until I discovered Islamic geometry and why I chose watercolours? Why not acrylics? Sincerely I don’t know. It just happened, and it made sense to me. It still makes sense.


But watercolour can be so challenging, amIright? It’s so watery, and you don’t really know how to use it. Too much pigment? Too much water? Will the paper hold enough paint? Will the colour change once dried out? There are so many unpredictable things about watercolour that you can only learn with experience.

I’m not here to show you how to use it, go to YouTube and choose between the billions of videos out there.

What I want to share with you today are my 3 watercolor tips for beginners that no one will ever tell you about… of course, they are your tips, Sandy, how could someone else tell them except you? Anyway, here they are:



I started using cotton gloves because I suffer from hyperhidrosis; thus, my hands and feet sweat like crazy, especially in spring and summer when the weather gets warmer.

I then started to realize that the best way to take care of my paintings is actually not touching the paper at all. The natural moisture on our hands may be transferred onto the paper and cause oily stains.

Also, when you lay your hands on the paper, you can easily create smudges by moving your hands. You don’t necessarily have to use gloves, but you can put paper tissue on it to prevent contact between your hands and the paper.



I’m lazy, and I have to admit that I don’t always clean my brushes after using them but believe me, if you want to save money clean your brushes.

Buy a natural soap and wash them carefully. Especially if your brushes are big and expensive, this will save you money. I mean, I use miniature brushes, and their cost vary from 3 to 15€. It’s not a big deal if I ruin one. But if your brush cost 40-60 euros, I think you would prefer to spend some time cleaning them instead of wasting your money.



Never ever try your palette directly onto the final piece.

Unless you are the watercolour guru and you already know how it would look like. I’m not a guru that’s why I always copy a piece of the design onto a piece of watercolour paper and try out the palette I’ve chosen. It will take you some extra time, but it will also save you a lot of stress during the painting process.

Read more about my tips for choosing your color palette here.


I hope these watercolor tips for beginners have been helpful.

Is there anything you would add to it? Let me know in the comments below


***Affiliate disclosure: This blog post contains affiliate links which means that I may earn a small commission – at no extra cost to you. This helps to support my work so that I can continue to make valuable free content for you.***


3 Watercolor Tips for Beginners

September 10, 2020

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  1. Shirley Schellentrager says:

    Thank you, Sandy. I’m a beginner with watercolors and I didn’t think about oils from my hands affecting the paper. It makes so much sense. I love the idea of a color trial by creating one section then using your phone to duplicate the section and build the construction.

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I’m an artist, self-taught designer, and educator who is hell-bent on teaching everyone how to get started with Islamic geometry.
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Hey! I'm Sandy Kurt