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How to paint a realistic papery poppy flower in watercolour

Realistic poppy paint watercolor
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Poppies are such beautiful summer flowers.   The combination of their vibrant colours and their delicate papery poppies makes them a favorite to paint.

But when working in watercolour, how do you go about achieving those papery effects and getting them looking really real?

In this video I show you how I go about it:

I hope this inspires you to get your sketchbook out and give these papery effects a try. If you do, please let me know how you get on in the comments below!

  1. Jodi 3 weeks ago

    I loved the video!!

  2. Victoria de Carvalho 3 weeks ago

    You are amazing painter, I love , I learnt a lot with you. My money is very short now , but when I can will get the class online e books. For now just YouTube. Im paint just 2 years still learnig Thank you.

  3. Mary Ruthenburg 3 weeks ago

    I love your paintings and did one of your classes with wonderful results. Thank you!
    Mary Ruthenburg

  4. Mary Soto 3 weeks ago

    Thank you seems easy. I will do this. I want the 3D effect.

  5. Mary Soto 3 weeks ago

    I started watercolors 2 years ago. I have pictures paintinh all over. I can tell the difference. Thru now.. So I need all the ideas that are valid. Thanks again. Good work. Good teaching.

  6. Kathryn 3 weeks ago

    beautiful poppy. I’m going to try your method and will let you know how it turns out.

  7. Iva 3 weeks ago

    Thank you for your video! I painted poppy last week and I can compare – your is better!

  8. Iva 3 weeks ago

    Thank you for your video! I painted poppy last week and I can compare – your is better!

  9. Liz Robinson 3 weeks ago

    Really clear demo and description. Details of brush size and colour etc really helpful. A brilliant website.

    Many thanks…yes making time to paint is so important!


  10. Everett Leeds 3 weeks ago

    Hello Anna, you make it look so easy! Wonderful technique, wishing you every success.

  11. Cathy Veselka 3 weeks ago

    Thank you again – your videos are really helping!!

  12. Camille 3 weeks ago

    Lovely! That’s exactly what I am painting now, several ones, their little petals in the sunshine!

  13. Lydia 3 weeks ago

    That’s beautiful Anna. How would I paint that loose? Thanks.

  14. Liz Robinson 3 weeks ago

    Perfect demo. Thanks!

  15. jenny wilson 3 weeks ago

    Hello Anna ,I would like to buy your dvd ‘s of your flower paintings ,can you please let me know how to order them ? Thank you ,I love your beautiful paintings ,xxx jenny

  16. zobrist 3 weeks ago

    Thank you Anna
    Beautiful as always i will paint poppies and study your good video
    have a nice Summer!

  17. Kerry 3 weeks ago

    Beautiful…. such exquisite detail in your painting and articulate explanation in how to do this. Now for me to practice , practice and practice. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your beautiful technique.


  18. Neli Rahneva 3 weeks ago

    You are not only amazing painter, you are amazing person! I love all your videos I have seen!

  19. Wendy 3 weeks ago

    You are so talented it is Beautiful. My favourite flower. Can’t wait to have a go xx

  20. maria kellner 3 weeks ago

    Hi Anna,I would appreciate you taking a look at my product that i developed for glazing I always enjoy your clear demo’s.

  21. Hilda Barone 3 weeks ago

    Absolutely beautiful. You help me so much. Thankyou x

  22. Hilda Barone 3 weeks ago

    Absolutely beautiful. You help me so much with my watercolour flowers. Thankyou x

  23. Susan Baich 3 weeks ago

    I absolutely love, love your work! I am going to ask for your online classes for a birthday present from family and hope they buy it for me! I took your class through CRAFTSY and I am hooked! You are a wonderful teacher and I just know if I keep practicing I can get there.. I was not intimidated at all and really enjoyed the process, I loved that you walk through every step of the class leaving nothing to question! You are amazing! thank you!

    • Profile photo of Anna Mason Author
      Anna Mason 3 weeks ago

      Thanks so much Susan – I’m delighted for you that you’ve found a technique that ‘clicks’ for you. It would be lovely to share your painting progress with you so I do hope you’re able to join the School soon!

  24. suzanne linch 3 weeks ago

    Wonderful colour.Buy the book everyone.
    It is amazing, you cant go wrong.
    Thank you Anna

  25. Diane P 5 days ago

    This was great. I know what I am missing, patience.. I need to slow down… but this was fantastic, loved this video… My problem is keeping it so light to get that paper thin look… but I did it, not great, but not too bad neither. Thank you so much, Anna…

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