How to paint snow effects in watercolour

Snow is white and painting white is a challenge in watercolour as we need to use the white of the paper to create our lightest colours.

So to get the most realistic results that means we have to paint around the snow. Here I show you how to do it by working on an enlarged section of a snowy pine cone:

I hope this gives you the courage to try adding snow to your own subjects! Do leave me a comment, I love to read them.

Happy painting,

Share this post!

Subscribe to blog updates

Blog Updates


  1. jean l anderson on December 13, 2018 at 3:35 pm

    You moved, you are pregnant, you should be taking Christmas off this year!
    Just do the minimum this year for everyone except your little boy. Pamper yourself and enjoy this time. No one will remember what you did or didn’t do.
    You are so beautiful, your writing is so wonderful, your instructions are so clear and your painting is incredible.
    Enjoy this time, you worked hard to get to be a Mom. I struggled with infertility 46 years ago and I can still remember how it was even now.
    Have a wonderful Christmas.

    • Anna Mason on December 13, 2018 at 4:18 pm

      What lovely kind words Jean! I will try my best to heed them. Wishing you a lovely Christmas too x

  2. Jodi on December 13, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    Love it now I have to get time to try it!!

  3. Rose Ann Vita on December 13, 2018 at 4:03 pm

    Thank you for sharing this video. It is an inspiration during such a busy time. I appreciate hearing you say, “Schedule some me-time.” Wishing you a blessed and holy holiday season and wellness on your pregnancy journey. May all be well. Rose Ann Vita

  4. Maria Ei Zar on December 13, 2018 at 4:08 pm

    I am very happy to learn with you. I am very blessed. Thank you.

  5. Shauna Todd on December 13, 2018 at 4:13 pm

    I loved your pinecone video! But, I am having a devil of a time finding the pinecone sketch you mentioned in your video so I could try it myself. Can you help?

    • Anna Mason on December 13, 2018 at 4:19 pm

      The drawing is available for members of my School Shauna, sorry for any confusion!

  6. nanci on December 13, 2018 at 5:05 pm

    Hi Anna
    I love your work and am tempted to take your class. My one hesitation is that I feel that my drawing is an area that I need work on and since you provide templates for tracing I fear that will not help me in becoming more adept. My question is, do your classes provide any drawing information?

    • Anna Mason on December 13, 2018 at 5:18 pm

      I have a video on drawing Nancy where I explain how I do it and give you a method to use that doesn’t use the drawings I provide. But because we need really accurate drawings for realistic work, the drawing is exact and often takes the form of measuring/tracing rather than sketching. I find that people do improve in their drawing skills because their general observation skills improve so much, but watercolour is certainly the focus of my school so you might want to look elsewhere for drawing specifically. Hope this helps.

  7. Susan Palmer on December 13, 2018 at 5:22 pm

    Thank you Anna for all the great teachings you have blessed me with. You are so talented. I have your book, your Craftsy video and some handouts.
    Would like to see a picture of your lovely family…. and congratulations on another upcoming child! Is your little boy talented like you? You have brought me much inspiration. Enjoy the holidays with your family!

  8. Frances White on December 13, 2018 at 5:39 pm

    Congratulations. I love the video although I live in the tropics and can just imagine the snow. I love your work and use your method in painting.

  9. Sally Logan on December 13, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    Congratulations Anna, I loved being pregnant especially over winter as the baby kept me warm. Even though my youngest is now 45, I can still recall the wonder of it all, enjoy every moment!
    Thank you for the demonstration, once again your attention to detail is extraordinary.

    Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year with your family. X

  10. Barbara gershberg on December 13, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Congratulations, what a happy surprise, the most wonderful Christmas gift.
    I find your detailed instructions and directions the easiest to follow of several other watercolor botanical artists.
    Love Christmas but not inspired here in Florida! I still miss the seasons up north!!

    Barb G.

  11. DayStreep on December 13, 2018 at 5:58 pm

    It is that we see you paint it. But I still think it is a trick.No I think you got really close to impossible!
    Lovely and do take time 4 yourself! It is better 4 us to wait one or two months … no we wont like that..
    But a Anna with burnout …that is not good at all!

  12. Barbara gershberg on December 13, 2018 at 6:01 pm

    Congratulations, what a beautiful Christmas gift!
    I find that your instructions and directions regarding your technique are the best of all other botanical watercolor artists.
    Lots of good luck!
    Barb G.

  13. Cynthia Johnson on December 13, 2018 at 7:36 pm

    Gorgeous.! All your paintings look like photographs and that’s meant as a compliment. Congratulations on the upcoming birth of your baby.

  14. Theodora on December 13, 2018 at 7:44 pm

    Congratulations !!Wonderful news!I loved your video,although i’m taking some lessons in watercolors…and I want to take your online lessons I have a challenge; always my first coat is great and when you start putting layers i’m “loosing the plot”…….trying to find in which point i’m making the mistake.Hope I will make it in the end!!!Best regards and happy holidays!

  15. Lynne on December 13, 2018 at 9:20 pm

    I usually paint with acrylics but have been trying watercolors lately. I’m so happy I found your site. I love painting trees and now I can try to do a few winter scenes!

  16. Anita H Hopkins on December 13, 2018 at 9:32 pm

    Congratulations! I love your videos, too.

  17. Paula Corcoran on December 13, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    Thank you Anna . Wishing you and your family a very merry Christmas and a year of wonderful experiences.

  18. Susan on December 13, 2018 at 11:26 pm

    Congratulations and best wishes to you and your family. I very new to Watercolour and paining at that and am so lucky I found you. I’ve ordered all my supplies from Jacksons in the U.K. and they are on my way to Tasmania in Australia. I plan to sign up to your online course and tackle each project until I’ve done them all. I just love the way you teach. No one else bothers to go into this amount of detail. I took an art class through the university and they left us a;one in a room all day to paint. I just walked out as I has no idea what to do do. Have a very merry Christmas and a fabulously creative new year xoxo

    • Anna Mason on December 14, 2018 at 9:22 am

      I hear this so much Susan, I think classes that just leave you to ‘get on with it’ try to reinforce an idea that art is somehow magical and can’t be explained. But it can, and anyone can learn how to do it if they give themselves some time. Merry Christmas to you!

  19. Judy Walker on December 14, 2018 at 12:47 am

    Hi Anna

    I think you are a fabulous artist and quite inspirational. I have watched a number of your short videos and have painted my own versions which I have liked. What do I do to join your classes and what does it cost?

  20. Coby Burns on December 14, 2018 at 1:01 am

    Congratulations! Have a wonderful warm Christmas with your loves ones xx

  21. Donna Prescott on December 14, 2018 at 1:57 am

    So happy for you!!. Take care of yourself and thank you for sharing your good news.

  22. Bridget Williams on December 14, 2018 at 2:07 am

    Lovely to hear the news of your pregnancy! Video great! Merry Christmas to you and yours and a wonderful New Year!

  23. Suzanne Linch on December 14, 2018 at 10:23 am

    Wonderful demonstration Anna Thank you

  24. Robin Geitner on December 14, 2018 at 1:48 pm

    Thank you Anna – this is a beautiful and instructive video. Christmas blessings to you and your family.

  25. Brandon Coan on December 14, 2018 at 3:23 pm

    Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m so happy for you and your whole family. Thank you for the video, and for all of the wonderful work you do to help us normal folks try to paint. Now, sit back, relax, and enjoy the wondrous Christmas season and take good care of yourself and the new little one. BTW, my gut says she’s a she. 😉

  26. Linda Barrett on December 14, 2018 at 7:03 pm

    I am so happy for you, your husband and Ben to be adding another little one.
    Don’t worry about anything but enjoying the holidays. Now go and have a cup of tea and a sweet treat by a warm fire

  27. Paula Lovell on December 16, 2018 at 3:29 am

    Congratulations!! And hope to take a class with you in the near future.

  28. Katz on December 16, 2018 at 5:23 am

    Hi Anna,
    North Queensland snow but lots of rain to keep us on our toes. A fortnight ago, it was bushfires but do not be concerned: this is Australia and we live with its wonderful and occasionally worrying weather extremes. Sky is a spread of dull grey at the moment and the ocean a greyish blue. Rain is anout to pelt down..time to put away the watercolours and get cracking on Christmas cooking.
    Merry Christmas to all.

  29. Learner on December 19, 2018 at 1:06 am

    Wow! Congratulations, beautiful Anna!!! I, too, hope it’s a girl;) Anyway, God bless your new coming baby with good health and gifts from above! You’re inspirational as always. Thanks for generously sharing your heart and your painting expertise with everyone. You’ve done a great job! I hope you can rest sometimes and take care of your babies. 😉 Wishing you and your loved ones peace and joy and a Merry Christmas!
    PS. Thanks Katz. It’s warm and rainy in Hawaii.:) Peace and Merry Christmas to all!

  30. DORIS NEO on December 22, 2018 at 4:38 am

    Thank you for the snowflakes video. As always, you make watercolor painting seems so achievable. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your loved ones.

  31. An Tran on December 24, 2018 at 8:31 am

    Congratulation that you are expecting a baby. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and your family!

  32. Jane on December 27, 2018 at 1:27 am

    Congratulations on you surprise baby! Praying all goes well! I always enjoy your videos. You make it look so possible! Thanks for sharing!!!

  33. Mary on December 29, 2018 at 4:31 am

    Congratulations on your news, a new baby is a joy! Love all your paintings and techniques for painting
    Happy New Year!

  34. Jeanine on December 30, 2018 at 5:40 am

    How do you do it all? I am truly amazed at your talent. Always love watching you paint. I enjoy watercolor myself but have difficulties with getting lost in all the fine details. Perhaps once my eyeglasses are updated I’ll be able to see those details better. They are too fuzzy for me to do a good job at this time.

    Congratulations on your new home and your growing family. Health and happiness to you and your family.

  35. Fer on January 7, 2019 at 9:15 pm

    Hi Anna, first of al I love your style!

    I would like to know if I star the subscription for one month, can I upgrade to 6 months later after the first month? And If start today the courses will the first mont end on the 31/01/2019 or on the 07/02/2019 ?

    Thank you for the precisions 🙂

    • Carrie (Team Anna Mason Art) on January 8, 2019 at 11:58 am


      In answer to your questions, yes you can upgrade or downgrade your subscription at any time and your membership starts from the day you make payment and it automatically renews on that date in either a month’s time, 6 month’s time or annually, depending on which subscription you choose. You can of course cancel it at anytime.

      If you have more questions, your best bet is to email me at [email protected] as I can respond more quickly there and in more detail.

      We hope to welcome you to Anna’s School soon! 🙂

      Best wishes,


Leave a Comment