Step 4: Continue to build color.
Wait for your first layer of paint to dry. (Unless you are using the wet-on-wet approach; in that case, work on the flower before the pigment is set.) Using the wash technique, continue to build your color layer by layer. Allow them to dry in between. Each time you mix a new hue, add a little less water to it. This will make the pigment darker. Coupled with the layers of paint, you'll start to build three-dimensional volume to your painting.
As you work, refer to both your drawing and your source photo. Consider: where are the areas of darkness? What places are in highlight? Are there sections where you can use watercolor techniques to bring out the unique characteristics of the petals? Painting from life is centered around these sort of questions and answering them—so don't be afraid to ask.
Step 5: Add the finer details.
Be careful when painting that you don't overwork your piece—know when it's time to stop applying pigment to an area of your painting. Once you feel that you've got the overall highlights, mid-tones, and shading done, begin to add the fine details. This is where a liner brush (pictured) comes in handy. Use it to draw any small accent lines or coloration, but do so sparingly; a few errant marks can mar an otherwise great painting.
When you're done, assess your painting with more questions. Are there areas that need more definition? What about the background? Make those changes if need be.
Step 6: Incorporate mixed media (optional).
Although this is a painting tutorial, there's nothing wrong with mixing media. One option, for even finer lines, is to use a colored pen or marker and define additional areas of your painting. If you're going with this option, however, it's best to select a drawing utensil that is the same color as your flower. That way, it will appear as though you painted those thin lines and won't look out of place.
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