By Steven Cronin

Please note the painting can be viewed via the link below in the author biography.

Firstly let me introduce my brushes theres the large Ron Ranson hake, flat and a no.3 rigger. These are accompanied by my seven colours Raw Sienna, Burnt Umber, Ultramarine Blue, Light Red, Paynes Gray, Alizarin Crimson and Lemon Yellow.

I began this painting by wetting the paper all over with clear water. With the large hake I randomly brushed in some Raw Sienna into the sky area. I also brushed a little into the water area. Water generally reflects the sky colours and I find it easier to get it in early while it is still on the brush.

Loading a clean brush with Ultramarine Blue, I went back into the sky and painted around the clouds, effectively creating negative shapes in the sky. Suddenly the initial Raw Sienna now appears to give the impression of clouds filling our sky. Remember to make the clouds narrower as they near the horizon.

As with the Raw Sienna, I continued the Ultramarine Blue into the water area to complete the reflection of the sky. If we need to add any more reflections in the water later in the painting we can just rewet the paper.


When painting land near the horizon I often use the same predominant colours I used in the sky. Looking far into the distance you find land and sky merge in one continuous tone.

To create a misty effect on your horizon you need to put your land in just before the sky is completely dry. In my painting Ive waited for the sky to dry so that I get a crisp edge on the land.

Loading my clean brush with the sky colours and a little Paynes Gray I put in the far land either side of the horizon. Its worth remembering that if you plan to put some distant yachts into your painting, the darker the land, the more the white sails will stand out.

Coming forward on the left, I again waited until the paint was dry before brushing in the large hill with a stronger mix. The rest of the foreground was painted in with various mixes of Raw Sienna, Burnt Umber, Ultramarine Blue and Light Red. Remember to clean your brush regularly so as not to let it get too muddy!

The finishing touch to the painting will be to add the dark lines of mud where the land meets the water. Before doing this you have to ensure the paper is dry. If you dont have the patience to wait then you can use a hairdryer.

Mix some Burnt Umber and Ultramarine Blue until you have a mix that is almost black. Make sure the hairs on your brush come to a chisel edge. If the hairs are split then place just the very tip of the brush into your water jar so as to bring the hairs together.

With your hake full of dark colour put in the mud lines. Remember to keep it subtle and not overdo it. Being of such dark colour, the mud lines could begin to dominate the painting and ruin it.

All thats left to do are the distant yachts. Making sure the paper is dry, place two credit cards across one another on the horizon so as to create a triangular template with which you can remove the paint so as to create the sails of a yacht.

Take the flat brush and dip it in your water. Wipe the brush on a tea towel to remove the excess water and then brush the paper to remove the paint before dabbing with a tissue to create the sails. Repeat the process so as to create as many yachts as you like, though as always, dont overdo it!

Finally take your rigger and sign your finished painting. Remember not to sign to near the edge else the frame will cover your signature. Now stand back and admire your masterpiece!

About the Author: Steven Cronin is artist and author of oil and watercolour painting tutorial books aimed primarily at beginners. Visit his bookstore at

To view the painting please visit


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