How to paint white cherry blossom flowers in watercolour

Cherry blossom flowers smothering trees, petals raining down, are one of nature’s most beautiful spring sights. 

You can see just how dreamy I think thought they were when I was pregnant at the end of this video!

But painting white flowers in watercolour, can be less than dreamy. 

Which is why, in this video, I show you the process of delicately handling these white flowers so that you stay in control and give petals form and detail, without taking them too dark:

Why not try painting these subtle flowers in your sketchbook and see how you get on.

If you enjoyed the video, please leave me a comment below, it is such fun to hear from you.

Happy painting,

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  1. Kathleen Cremonesi on June 9, 2020 at 3:14 pm

    Radiant and beautiful, Anna! And the painting too! 🙂 What a great refresher on putting down subtle layers to achieve a dramatic effect, and I can see how I should be a bit more patient putting color down even on my current work in progress – brilliant yellow and scarlet lake tulips. Thank you!

  2. Nguyen on June 9, 2020 at 3:18 pm

    Thank you

    • Sarah Massey on June 10, 2020 at 9:23 am

      Lovely video. Informative. I don’t think my skills are up to tackling it yet, but, hopefully, soon. What paper do you use. It looks quite smooth? Thank you.

  3. Ranjana on June 9, 2020 at 3:18 pm

    Hi Anna,
    Hope you are well. Thanks for sharing your skill and art so generously with all of us.
    This video, like all others is so good and I like the way you s show and explain your method….. Thanks again.
    Take care. Be safe

  4. Michelle Sleater on June 9, 2020 at 3:20 pm

    i love the video, anna! i just wish you would make it a tutorial (and make MORE tutorials, in general!).

  5. Shirley on June 9, 2020 at 3:22 pm

    Thank you for this video! I hope I get the chance to try it out once things aren’t so busy. You’re a lovely teacher and extremely talented painter. Oh, and I really loved the dancing at the end =D! Stay safe and God bless you!

  6. Marilyn on June 9, 2020 at 3:23 pm

    I have purchased your brushes from Wind River Arts in Texas, USA – excellent online retailer with wonderful customer service – and last week your book, The Modern Flower Painter, from Amazon arrived. This is undoubtedly the most beautiful and comprehensive watercolor book I have seen. I am retired and am self-taught for the most part, having read every art book in our library here in Westlake, Ohio and having spent way too much time on YouTube. Your website is PERFECT and your book is outstanding.
    When it arrived, my husband was paging through it and asked, “Who wrote this? A child?” pointing to your picture! (I know you will love the compliment having just had a significant birthday.)
    I intend to do all the exercises in the book! THANK YOU for all your hard work and encouragement.

    • Diane Ruggles on June 9, 2020 at 5:51 pm

      Thanks for the tip on the brushes. I would rather purchase in the US. Also I need to check out her book. I’m sure it’s wonderful! Happy Painting!

      Diane Ruggles

    • elizabeth richmond on June 9, 2020 at 6:26 pm

      Hi Marilyn….

      We’re neighbors, I live in North Olmsted. Does the Westlake library have her books to loan? I borrowed several last year but never found any from Anna. After doing her Pear tutorial I got hooked! Then began scouring YouTube for tutorials and techniques. I’m a semi retired nurse, this is a new hobby for me coming from zero artistic genes. Doing the Pear tutorial gave me a desire to learn more. I just Love Anna Mason.
      Although admittedly I have been slacking terribly. I just renewed my 6th month subscription after never lifting my brush during my last subscription! ~ sigh
      I would love a painting buddy or someone to keep me accountable if you ever want to meet at the library. Feel free to reach out. [email protected]

      Have a Colorful day!
      Elizabeth Richmond

    • elizabeth richmond on June 9, 2020 at 6:26 pm

      Hi Marilyn….

      We’re neighbors, I live in North Olmsted. Does the Westlake library have her books to loan? I borrowed several last year but never found any from Anna. After doing her Pear tutorial I got hooked! Then began scouring YouTube for tutorials and techniques. I’m a semi retired nurse, this is a new hobby for me coming from zero artistic genes. Doing the Pear tutorial gave me a desire to learn more. I just Love Anna Mason.
      Although admittedly I have been slacking terribly. I just renewed my 6th month subscription after never lifting my brush during my last subscription! ~ sigh
      I would love a painting buddy or someone to keep me accountable if you ever want to meet at the library. Feel free to reach out. [email protected]

      Have a Colorful day!
      Elizabeth Richmond

  7. Anita visram on June 9, 2020 at 3:23 pm

    Anna wow….. Just so real. Your videos always make me want to get out the paint paper and brushes. Your videos are a real treat in this horrid time of lockdown. Keep safe. Best regards Anita

  8. Sharon on June 9, 2020 at 3:26 pm

    Thank you, Anna, for this most beautiful and inspirational video. This is my first time posting. I’m 76 next month and will keep painting until I can’t anymore your painting are so incredibly beautiful. Please don’t stop making these wonderful videos.

    • Anna Mason on June 9, 2020 at 4:09 pm

      I won’t! Thanks Sharon, you keep at it!

  9. Evett on June 9, 2020 at 3:28 pm

    I love your work and the videos , I have both of your books and the detail is so vivid and wow really wow…..thanks again for sharing your work.

  10. Carol Kenney on June 9, 2020 at 3:28 pm

    I am in the middle of painting the large version Anna and really enjoying the challenge. As you keep telling us, I do take lots of breaks and then look at it with fresh eyes. Makes all the difference.

  11. Diane Sloan on June 9, 2020 at 3:34 pm

    I love how you build up glazes. The amount of water vs. color matters.

  12. Diane Ruggles on June 9, 2020 at 3:34 pm

    Thank you Anna!! These Apple Blossoms are Breath taking! I’m learning so much from you. The last time I did white flowers they ended up looking grey. But watching you work so carefully and patiently layering and working from light to dark and to mid tones. Well it’s just amazing. You are a genius with watercolor! I’m so glad I found you and so thrilled to be a student of yours!
    Truly ♥
    Diane Ruggles

  13. Amanda Walker on June 9, 2020 at 3:37 pm

    I joined the school a few months back to help with stress and anxiety, I’m a Nurse. My colleagues love my paintings and one has even asked me to paint for her. I really enjoy your tutorials and I am in awe of your talent (one day I’ll be able to paint like Anna – I keep telling myself). I hope you and your husband get a boost from knowing that you have really helped me with my mental health issues and my confidence and have helped me unwind after some pretty stressful times at work over the last few months.I hope you are both coping through this lockdown, it can’t be easy with two babies! Thank you Anna xx

  14. Jhilmil on June 9, 2020 at 3:42 pm

    I really enjoyed watching this video and am going to try making a study like this soon. I think the brushes I have are not fine enough but I am first going to try with what I have before rushing out to buy more. Thank you for doing what you do!

    • Hilda Barone on June 10, 2020 at 12:12 am

      Thankyou Anna for this tutorial. Beautiful blossoms and you make it look so easy..
      Love the tips you give us. I’m hoping to paint some too. You are amazing. Xxxx

  15. Irene on June 9, 2020 at 3:43 pm

    White blossoms are a challenge. Thanks for your ideas on color around them.

  16. Emma Marcellin on June 9, 2020 at 3:48 pm

    As always you make it look so easy with your step by step method. You make the white blossoms come alive on the paper. Thank you for your tutorials

  17. Arthur Davies-Patrick on June 9, 2020 at 3:51 pm

    Really fantastic and nice and slow explaining as you go along, just perfect for me, Arthur

  18. Mary Tarver on June 9, 2020 at 3:51 pm

    I have white hydrangeas in my garden, and my magnolia trees are blooming at this time in northern Georgia. I have taken multiple pictures to have for reference photos. I am working my way through all the tutorials, and really trying to master the lessons on leaves. I would love to be able to paint a large picture of a beautiful magnolia to place in my dining room. I have done the tutorial on the apple blossoms. I have not done the one on raindrops yet. And I don’t think you can get enough practice on leaves! There are so many kinds to try.
    I have enough pictures to give me plenty of things to paint during the lockdown time and on into the winter months. I’m storing up reference pictures while I practice the tutorials.
    Thank you for such a timely offering.

  19. Linda Stephan on June 9, 2020 at 3:53 pm

    Thank you, Anna! I just painted some too grey gardenias. Going to try it your way now!

  20. Gabriella on June 9, 2020 at 3:55 pm

    Ciao Anna I tuoi video sono bellissimi. Io sono una tua fun italiana. Purtroppo non capisco le tue spiegazioni a voce perché conosco poco l’inglese. Potrei darti un suggerimento, le spiegazioni scritte vengono tradotte automaticamente nella mia lingua; se tu scrivessi anche quelle dei video sarebbe il massimo.
    Complimenti sei bravissima

  21. Rita on June 9, 2020 at 3:59 pm

    Anna, thank you for:this beautiful video which just keeps encouraging me to pain, paint and paint, I now have my dining table set up permanently just to paint whenever I feel like it. I have all you books and learn from them but the videos are amazing as I feel I am right there with you. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge.

    • Anna Mason on June 9, 2020 at 4:08 pm

      Delighted to be with you Rita!

  22. Betty on June 9, 2020 at 3:59 pm

    You are an awesome teacher. I am not doing watercolors right now but you are inspiring me to do so soon. Thank you for this video. I will subscribe to you on uTube for sure.

  23. Beth on June 9, 2020 at 4:00 pm

    Thank you for this demonstration on painting white flowers. Can’t wait to give this one a try.

  24. Renato Marandino on June 9, 2020 at 4:09 pm

    Hi Anna! Wonderful video! I painted the cherry blossoms without seeing it, a bold decision, but I’m so happy to see that I basically followed your instructions. It means that all your teaching on the other tutorials have already set in my mind and I’m able to follow them by myself. Thank you!!

  25. Ivor Boulton on June 9, 2020 at 4:29 pm

    It’s so amazing how you made those petals come alive.

  26. Teresa Tipton on June 9, 2020 at 4:29 pm

    I am in awe of your talent. I keep trying to paint more realistically and practice on some level everyday. You inspire me to be a better painter!

  27. Barbara on June 9, 2020 at 4:29 pm

    Love this video Anna. Very informative, and your voice has the most soothing quality which makes it very watchable.

  28. Cathie Horrell on June 9, 2020 at 4:30 pm

    So enjoyed this. Learning so much from you. You are helping me not overdo a painting. Love just looking at your work.

  29. Gail May on June 9, 2020 at 4:35 pm

    Hi Anna
    Loved painting the sketchbook flowers and am now attempting the larger version. I am finding this harder as I am slightly concern it is becoming too gray, even though I have carefully layered up. However it’s difficult to know until I have finished this and balanced the lights and darks more!

  30. Kathleen Sorman on June 9, 2020 at 4:43 pm

    This was so fun and so inspiring to watch! As always, you make me believe that I can do some thing like this and inspire me to keep trying. I took a picture of a flowering branch a couple years ago that I absolutely love. It to have white flowers. I keep looking at that picture and wanting to try to paint it But have been too intimidated to try. So now I’ll start with your tutorial and give it a go. Thank you so so much for your school and your resources I am a huge fan and my Painting is definitely improving. And more importantly I love it more and more each day. Thank you Anna

  31. Charylene Peterson on June 9, 2020 at 4:44 pm

    Enjoyed this video, your explanations are good and I like your technique.

  32. Norazua on June 9, 2020 at 4:51 pm

    Love the video especially when you showed how you paint and compare it with the reference photo side by side

  33. Kathy Staicer on June 9, 2020 at 5:00 pm

    Nice video.

  34. Nataliia Orsik on June 9, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    Это восхитительно!

  35. Pam Perrine on June 9, 2020 at 5:13 pm

    Eager to watch the video and complete this watercolor! I LOVE these and the flowers on the Dogwood! Once I finish my Cosmos I want to tackle this. Thank you!

  36. Raquel on June 9, 2020 at 6:14 pm

    Hello Anna,
    I’m from Mexico. We follow your courses and admire your work.
    My mother is very happy when she sees your online courses

    • Anna Mason on June 9, 2020 at 8:19 pm

      Mexico! Wonderful. I would love to visit one day. Thank you for leaving a comment!

  37. elizabeth richmond on June 9, 2020 at 6:28 pm

    Anna, I just played this video with no intention of painting again– today. I’ve been away from my painting for far too long.
    But, I just love hearing your voice and clear concise instructions 🙂
    Beautiful painting, as always, thank you for the video and sharing your gift.


  38. Beth Carroll on June 9, 2020 at 7:09 pm

    As always a joy. Slowing down is my biggest fault. You do it wonderfully. Thank you for your encouragement.videos.

  39. Jill Lein on June 9, 2020 at 7:11 pm

    Hello Anna, Thanks so much for the refresher! I’ve just been struggling with a painting of some Ornamental Crab-apple tree blossoms. They are much like the cherry blossoms but pinker and with tons of veining. I ended up with petals that were far too grey. Your refresher encourages me to take another go at. Thanks again!

  40. Karen on June 9, 2020 at 7:15 pm

    Anna, your tutorials are a joy to watch. I love your calm and rational way of explaining your process. Everything about your videos is well made and extremely professional – they all look so smoothly edited but I know how much time and effort goes on behind the scenes. Thanks so much for sharing!

  41. Barbara on June 9, 2020 at 7:37 pm

    It’s amazing the way blossoms come to life when you paint! I,m in the early stages of watercolor painting and I learn so much just observing your method! Thank you.

  42. Yvonne Angel on June 9, 2020 at 7:45 pm

    Thank you, Anna, for this lovely preview of the cherry blossom tutorial. I love it, but I’m a newby to your school, and will start with the pear I think. I turned 77 last week, started painting when I retired, never having done any artwork before. The best thing I ever did. I have so much fun with it. Until doing your tutorial of the rose, I hadn’t tried realistic botanicals before, though I have always noticed and admired them. Your tutorials are giving me the courage to try more.

  43. Cathy A VanLeit on June 9, 2020 at 8:01 pm

    Thank you. I am already seeing some improvement with my painting. I’ve been trying to find my particular style and subject. The classes are reaffirming what I prefer-that is detailed realistic painting g.

  44. Mama Mia on June 9, 2020 at 8:09 pm

    I love it, the painting and the dance 🙂 I appreciate all the time you spent on teaching your method. I really enjoy studing with you and cannot wait to see how my work will improve with practice. Take care!

  45. muenn on June 9, 2020 at 8:17 pm

    Before i watched your video, i attempted painting a bush anemone flower, reference photo attached, now blooming in California. The shadows are deep, not delicate. My effort, so far, looks like a grey flower.

  46. Ann on June 9, 2020 at 8:48 pm

    Thank you for another beautiful lesson. One of the most important lessons I’ve learned from your tutorials is to paint in some of the darker areas early on in the process to give definition to the lighter shapes. I’d like to take one of your full courses, but I’m still working, and I have limited time. Maybe when I retire next year I’ll treat myself to the full course. Sigh.

    • Anna Mason on June 10, 2020 at 11:32 am

      Your time is coming Ann! Retirement can be a wonderful gift.

  47. Sherry Webster on June 9, 2020 at 8:51 pm

    Thank you for the inspiring and educational video. I am still working on the chick, and I love it! Also…loved the dance amidst the flowers! Thank you for your talent and encouragment.

  48. phyllis on June 9, 2020 at 9:26 pm

    Another wonderful YouTube watercolor. I have learned so much watching you. Wish I had more time to paint.

  49. SJ on June 9, 2020 at 9:50 pm

    Wow! This really pops off the paper and looks so real. This video is very timely as I am just about to make a start on the scallop shell which is just white and pale greys. I thought that it would be useful to help me understand the tonal values needed to get that realistic look. Thank you for all of your wonderful tips.

  50. Susie P on June 9, 2020 at 11:01 pm

    Thanks so much Anna. I really enjoyed this short video. I’m a member of your school since shutdown began and have completed 6 projects, and am working on the fig tutorial now. Having tried other methods and I can recommend Annas tutorials as this method of teaching takes the trepidation out of tackling watercolour.

  51. Celeste Vinay on June 9, 2020 at 11:56 pm

    Thank you Anna. Your video is excellent and really inspirational, you explain every step of the way and clearly helps one understand the tonal values in order to make the painting pop!! Love your video and it has encouraged me to give the apple blossoms a go!!! Celeste

  52. Jeannie on June 10, 2020 at 12:39 am

    Such a lovely painting and great camera work too it never misses a stroke and your voice is so soothing and lovely, wonderful descriptions step by step. And the result is stunning. Thank you for sharing your skill. Hugs and stay safe.

  53. Susan (Paintbuddy) on June 10, 2020 at 1:10 am

    Anna, that was inspirational and relaxing at the same time. I’m looking forward to springtime here in Tasmania so that I can create some paintings of the apricot blossoms emerging the way you have just shown. At the moment I only have rose hips and fading cone flowers in my garden (covered in frost), however I can get excellent photos if I sneak into my garden as the sun rises and the cone flowers are back lit with their spiky little heads and the mixes of yellow, orange, brown and green leaves. In the meantime I’ll sit by the fire and read your books. Thank you for sharing your beautiful work worldwide.

  54. Catherine Brown on June 10, 2020 at 1:12 am

    The cherry blossom is a beautiful flower I have them in the garden and have never tried to paint them because they are white. Thanks for inspiring me to paint them. I also have white wild clematis, something else to try.

  55. Hellen Walder on June 10, 2020 at 1:27 am

    yes I tried the apple blossom and found I needed to layer more colour but still needed something to kick it off. But I am improving

  56. Sheri on June 10, 2020 at 1:44 am

    So beautiful! Looking forward to doing some of your lessons!!!

  57. Yulia on June 10, 2020 at 2:14 am

    Beautiful! Short and sweet! very helpful!

  58. Carol Held on June 10, 2020 at 2:22 am

    Hello Anna. You are truly an inspiration as a person than as a very talented artist. You bring so much of your personality into making your tutorials and really do care about those of us that enjoy painting but keep hiding our talent under a bushel so to speak. smile I am Canadian and life near that little waterfall called, ” Niagara Falls”. haha I have a YT channel where I share little bits of art I enjoy creating. I dabble in watercolor once in a while to encourage others to paint even when they are a beginner like myself. hahaha I always take time to watch your videos and wanted to thank you for inspiring me to keep trying my hand at water coloring and stop putting off joining your classes. hahaha I have a tutorial of a Cardinal that looked like she swallowed another Cardinal by the time I kept correcting the red paint that kept traveling the page. LOL I never give up even if my coloring skills need help. Thank you for caring and sharing your talent with us.

    • Anna Mason on June 10, 2020 at 11:31 am

      Thanks for the lovely message Carol and I’m so pleased you are painting and sharing

  59. Kerry Wright on June 10, 2020 at 3:11 am

    Thank you so much Anna. I have never tried painting white flowers yet I love them so. I will give it a try! Your work is beautiful.

  60. Lynette McKillop on June 10, 2020 at 4:35 am

    Anna as usual you have produced a beautiful painting. I have been taking your art classes in your school and I can only say WOW. You have made me want to paint. I am not very good but I love doing your tutorials. I have learnt spook much from your school.

    Thank You for giving me a challenge and I love your feed back from your team and the school community. Unfortunately I can’t buy your rushes here in Australia at the moment but when covid19 is over I am sure they will import them.

    Love your work and your relaxed teaching style. I have a new passion thanks to you.

    • bevh39 on June 10, 2020 at 5:41 am

      hello Anna,
      I am from Queensland where it is winter at the moment but it is a time to be inside and take in all of your tutorials. I tried the blossom tutorial last month and was not happy with it. Got frustrated and rushed it ending up with too many dark stripes. Thankyou for this video as it confirms to me that I used too much paint at the beginning. I shall have another go at it. It certainly is a lovely subject and would look really lovely on the wall.
      Thank you for your concern with us all. It is a pleasure to have your instruction beside me and it is always very nicely presented.

  61. Heidi Soriano on June 10, 2020 at 7:04 am

    Wish I could paint this way too! Thank you for your generosity! God bless!

  62. Sabina on June 10, 2020 at 7:12 am

    Fantastica pittrice ti seguo da sempre , vorrei sapere dipingere come tu fai❤️

  63. Margaret Axford on June 10, 2020 at 7:26 am

    Hi Anna,
    So impressed with the way you work. Trying to get use to hot press paper as have always used cold press. I’m in Australia can I buy your brushes somewhere here ? Keep up the amazing work.

  64. Margaret Wright on June 10, 2020 at 8:22 am

    Loved watching the video and can’t wait to start painting again, just moved house so paints still packed.

    • Anna Mason on June 10, 2020 at 11:30 am

      An exciting fresh start. I hope you can create a designated painting space.

  65. Darina Karcheva on June 10, 2020 at 8:27 am

    Здравейте Анна! Пиша ви на български, на кирилица! Аз съм от България! Благодаря за видеото! Това е страхотно което правите! Жалко ,че нямаме превод на книгите ви ,за което вече Ви писах! Но продължавам да гледам Вашите уроци, въпреки че аз съм учител по изобразително изкуство. Никога не е късно да научиш техники ,особено от акварела. А Вие сте едновременно и талантлив художник и добър ментор. Пожелавам Ви здраве и Бог да Ви пази!
    Дарина Карчева

  66. Lisa on June 10, 2020 at 8:39 am

    So Excellent~♡

  67. Frank van Deenen on June 10, 2020 at 9:13 am

    The video is a clearly example of how to build up the painting, it makes it easier for someone like me, as junior in painting aquarelles.

    Greetings, Frank from the Netherlands.

    • Anna Mason on June 10, 2020 at 11:29 am

      Thank you Frank, I hope you have success when you try it yourself.

  68. Loraine Lyons on June 10, 2020 at 9:13 am

    Thank you Anna. You are such a great tutor and so generous with your help to us all. I have your flower book and it is brilliant. I have found that taking a photo on my phone of my work In progress together with my reference photo helps me see which areas I need to address more. Also using a grey scale of my reference photo helps determine the various values. I just wish I had your talent and patience! Keep safe. Loraine

    • Anna Mason on June 10, 2020 at 11:29 am

      You’re going to progress really well if you stick at it Loriane – the phone photo trick is a great one for helping you see what’s needed. Thank you for taking the time to comment.

  69. Michelle on June 10, 2020 at 1:25 pm

    Hi Anna
    I love receiving your emails and videos thank you. I am in awe of all of your work and look forward to trying your tutorials soon.

  70. Fran on June 10, 2020 at 7:00 pm

    Thank you for this lovely video. You are amazing!

  71. Vivian on June 10, 2020 at 9:56 pm

    I love the video, Anna. You are very .generous. I learn drawing since last moth and I just learn watercolor paint last week from your pear video. I am so happy and lucky to learn from you. Thank you so much.

  72. mercedes on June 10, 2020 at 10:21 pm

    Thanks Anna! it is admirable how you work these flowers. I find it very dificult to be subtle with watercolor. I just bought your book 1 but in 25 days i will receive it. This video will help me during the wait, also the blog and all your publications.

  73. Wendy Wright on June 11, 2020 at 5:08 am

    Thank you Anna, a lovely demo!

  74. Kaz on June 11, 2020 at 8:34 am

    Thank you for this tutorial. I have only recently taken up watercolours and I found this really helpful, I am a complete novice and was so pleased with the outcome. I must now practice Practice, practice x

  75. Vaishali Deorukhkar on June 11, 2020 at 2:14 pm

    Thanks for the video, loved it, still new to this, will take time to adjust with watercolor

  76. Jone on June 17, 2020 at 8:36 pm

    I want to start painting.please tell me where to begin, materials etc.
    I want to be inspired. In a new location with no friends yet. Thought this would be good for me.

    • Anna Mason on June 18, 2020 at 12:16 pm

      Hi Jone, have you signed up for my free class? If you do that (link is via the main menu) I’ll walk you through how to start!

  77. Minnie on June 18, 2020 at 1:09 am

    Wonderful technique! You seem to break it down into “doable” steps. I had purchased your book “The Modern Flower Painter” and while still working on the rose, I signed up for your class. I’m enjoying both immensely- you’ve found your true calling. Many thanks.

    • Anna Mason on June 18, 2020 at 12:15 pm

      Aww thanks Minnie – I’m so pleased you are finding the teaching helpful and enjoyable.

  78. Eunice on June 28, 2020 at 6:06 am

    Thank you Anna, I did pick up so many hints, I feel I could now tackle white blossoms.

  79. Indrani Pinheiro on July 10, 2020 at 5:13 pm

    Absolutely love your work n so happy to follow your videos…truely so helpful…I love to paint n haven’t yet tried watercolour…am at present doing just coloured pencils….but your tips are invaluable…Thank you…would love to follow more…

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