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How to Paint a Watercolor Watermelon

Watermelon just screams summer! Just thinking about that delicious fruit evokes memories of picnics, warm weather and fun! Here’s how you can create your own watermelon painting with the help of some watercolor paints.


  • Drawing pencil
  • Watercolor paper — good quality, thick paper.  I like to use at least 140 lb. weight.
  • Watercolor paints: Quinacridone Red, Phthalo Green, Cadmium Yellow, Ivory Black
  • Paintbrush with a fine tip

Before You Start Your Painting, Keep these Tips in Mind:

It’s important to work with wet paint for the majority of this tutorial, so work quickly and try not to let your paint dry between steps, except for the very last part.

The goal with this watermelon painting is to make it look fresh. In order to do that, you need to only apply paint once in any given area. This isn’t a painting for layers. Painting over areas that you have already painted can muddy the painting, making it look over-worked and heavy. Keep it easy and free-flowing.

Step 1: Draw Your Outline

Start by drawing a light, triangular outline of the watermelon slice with a pencil. Keep it light so that the pencil lines don’t show through your paint later on.

You can free-hand a triangle or use the corner of a piece of paper to get straight edges. Just bes sure to make the bottom part curved to mimic the shape of a watermelon slice.

Step 2: Paint in the Pink Parts of the Watermelon

Mix some Quinacridone Red with some water on your palette and spread it over the top section of the watermelon slice. You can leave white spaces here and there and vary the thickness and thinness of the paint. You want it to look a little splotchy, a little transparent, with some parts darker than others. Plus, white space gives life to watercolor paintings.

Keeping the paint wet allows for a smoother, fresher look, so keep that in mind as you work.  Dried paint creates hard edges, which you’ll want to avoid.

Leave a thick, blank space (about 1/2″ or so) at the bottom for the watermelon rind.

Step 3: Paint the Watermelon Rind with Varying Shades of Green

Load your brush up with some Phthalo Green and paint the bottom section of the rind. This part can be painted more evenly across.

Next, mix the Phthalo Green with some Cadmium Yellow to make a light green. Paint this color right above the darker green while the paint is still wet, letting the two green hues mix slightly where they touch each other. Leave a little white space between the lighter yellow-green and the pink part of the watermelon.

Then, water down the yellow-green and add dab your brush in a few places in the remaining white section, letting the green mix with the pink. Also leave a little white space in this area.

Step 4:  Paint the Watermelon Seeds

While the pink paint is still wet, lightly dab a few spots with some black paint, giving the impression of seeds that are sitting underneath the surface. Let dry.

Go back in with more black paint and add a few more spots. Now that the pink layer is dry, these seeds will look more defined, giving the impression that they are on the surface. This adds depth and interest to your watermelon painting.

There you have it! An easy but impressive watercolor painting.

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