Layers are like life; onions, people, skin, the clouds, ghosts, and even tales about heaven and hell are made up of layers. The earth is made of layers. So use them in art-making! Here's a great way to use a color key to show the beauty of layers. You'll need watercolor paper, watercolors, brushes, water, an eraser, and a pencil.
STEP 1 - Sketch out your drawing! I was hella into wires (whether it's because of Princess Mononoke, the very conceptual idea of connection, Chobits, or simply Björk's All is Full of Love video). I just have a thing for cords and wires that extends to vines and arabesques and jali screens too. Anyway, so I colored in wires with graphite pencil, and added a figure in the foreground. You'll need a background and a figure if you are going to follow along. If you have any adjustments just do them, and don't ask me. Sounds good? Okay let's keep moving.
STEP 2 - Choose your first color for shadows and mid-tones. Watercolors are great for this because you can lighten them simply by adding water. Paint one layer, dry and paint another. Continue drying and painting until you have sharp details. Watercolor is great for this. It should dry fairly quickly on a crisp autumn day like today.
STEP 3 - Choose another color. And repeat by adding mid-tones.
STEP 4 - Choose another and do the same with your figure. Work from mid-tone to highlight. Add water to lighten your color mix.
STEP 5 - Mix your last color creating shades from what you have. Finish your figure. Let it dry, and display it at the appropriate time and place.