Create A Background For A Simple Watercolor Coloring Book Image

by May Sukyong Park

Hello, Altenew friends. Norine here with you today! I have a card idea for you, to turn a simple floral image from the Watercolor Coloring Book into something more like a scene. Not that the beautiful images in that book need any modification, but with the simple technique I’m going to show you, you can add extra interest and make your beautiful floral images really pop!

Let’s get started!

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 1

I began by selecting one of the “stamped” outline images in the Watercolor Coloring Book and coloring with the Woodless Watercolor Pencils. I tried to use at least 2 or 3 different shades in each outlined area, which you can readily see in the leaves.

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 5

The flower petals also have a multi-shade colored and painted look – but more than that! Once the watercolor pencil pigment was reactivated with a wet paintbrush, blended, and dried, I came back with additional shades of paint from the Artists' Watercolor 24 Pan Set. You’ll notice this in particular with the addition of the purple hues on top of the flower on the lefthand side.

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 6

This is where the fun begins!

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 10

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 12

I found a scrap piece of paper on my desk – a cut-off from some previous project – and trimmed it a little more to be the perfect size to add a plank fence behind my flowers.

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 14

I used a pencil to draw lines on either side of the strip of paper, eyeballing for the approximate middle of the image, and taking the lines to the edge on either side.

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 15

Then, using the 0.1 fine-liner pen, I free-hand drew over the pencil lines to produce an imperfect and wobbly line to simulate fence lines. I could have added thin gaps between each plank, but I worried that any additional detail would be distracting and draw the focus away from the flowers rather than adding some simple interest to the background. Often, I like to paint muted shades of background color behind my florals, but this time I took it a step further, adding the pen details.

Altenew NorineB WatercolorColoringBook WoodlessWatercolorPencils 24PanPaint 4

Finally, I erased the pencil lines, mixed up the leftover colors of paint on the lid of my palette box, added some black to turn it grey, and painted the fence planks. As you can see, I didn’t take particular care around the edges of the flowers, adding to the “artistic” look of the piece. Once dry, I added black paint speckles and white gouache speckles, trimmed up the card panel, and adhered it to a card base. I stamped and heat embossed a greeting from the Framed Foliage Stamp Set and heat set with clear embossing powder.

Thanks so much for joining us today and I hope you’ve been inspired to do something creative!  Have a wonderful day!


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Watercolor Coloring Book
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Stress-Free Coloring Book and…
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Florals Coloring Book and Watercolor…
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Artists' Watercolor Brushes – Detailed
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Artists' Watercolor Brushes – Round
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Woodless Watercolor Pencil 24 Set
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Artists' Watercolor 24 Pan Set
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Fragile Foliage Stamp Set
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Fragile Foliage Stamp & Die Bundle
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Crystal Clear Crisp Embossing Powder
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Fine Liner Pen Set
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My Sweet Petunia MISTI – Original
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em May 26, 2021 - 9:52 AM

Great idea. Thank you.

Carol H May 26, 2021 - 10:27 AM

Norine, this is beautiful, as is everything you create. I am amazed that your penned lines are so straight, while done free-hand. I have severe arthritis and I can hardly write my name! I used to paint and I could do lines like that and now I can only admire other peoples’ crafts.

Cindy C. May 26, 2021 - 10:38 AM

Love your coloring, and such clever way to make that beautiful background!

Maureen Reiss May 26, 2021 - 11:06 AM

Wow!!! Gorgeous card!!

barbara lassiter May 26, 2021 - 11:21 AM

This is gorgeous and thank you! I’ve been wondering how I was going to paint the darker outlined flowers in the watercolor book and this looks fantastic and gives me a good idea with which to start! The others I’m painting with a no-line look and I’m having so much fun. The outlined flowers will be used on cards, but I’m not sure about the others yet.

Renee VanEpps May 26, 2021 - 11:46 AM

OMGoodness this is so BEAUTIFUL!!!!! LOVE how the plank background looks and your water coloring is super pretty!

tara prince May 26, 2021 - 12:56 PM

so very sweet!!

Karen Hale May 26, 2021 - 4:38 PM

Absolutely beautiful! Thanks for the inspiration to get out my water colors.

karen514 May 26, 2021 - 8:05 PM

Beautiful card and inspired design!

Bobby Hagen May 27, 2021 - 11:33 AM

So beautiful, Norine. Thanks for sharing the background idea.

Kathy Raker May 27, 2021 - 9:50 PM

I love the plank background and the watercolored flowers, admire your shading of the flowers.

Barb in Kazoo May 30, 2021 - 6:33 AM


Rosali Bartz May 30, 2021 - 6:49 AM

This is gorgeous, Norine!! Love the colors mixing, the shades you used and the wood-like background!!

sgkritzik6286 June 20, 2022 - 1:12 AM

I have a bad essential tremor and can’t paint or draw lines either. So I use stamps to color in flowers and rulers to help me draw lines!


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