Watercolor Landscaping

by Kittie Caracciolo

Sketch a few lines here, brush a bit of ink there, and create a pretty landscape.


  • Image stamp and Watercolor Minis fern stamp

  • Waterproof ink such as Stazon™

  • Classic Ink and Reinkers of your choice

  • Watercolor paper

  • Waterproof artist pen

  • Watercolor brushes - large round, small round and small spotter

  • Scruffy brush - ½ inch

  • Mini tip sponge applicator

  • Sponge

  • Cloud template

  • Water container for dipping brushes

  • Cloth for drying brushes if needed


  1. Step 1

    Stamp image with Stazon™ and sketch a simple tree outline with an artist pen.

    Stamp the main image again on plain scrap paper and create a mask.

  2. Step 2

    Using artist pen, sketch more lines to create bark and limb areas, leaving space to fill in with leaves.

  3. Step 3

    Choose two shades of brown reinkers to use for your tree. I used Creamy Caramel and Close to Cocoa.

    Watercolor tree by washing a layer of light brown re-inker with a large round brush. Allow to dry well.

    TIP: If you try adding darker color for shading while ink is still wet it will run and not allow the desired shading.

  4. Step 4

    Using the large round brush, watercolor a second layer of a little darker brown reinker on the tree and allow to dry.

  5. Step 5

    Add shading to the bark lines using darkest brown reinker with small spotter brush.

  6. Step 6

    Choose two shades of green reinkers and Classic inks to use for leaves and grassy area. Using two different shades will create more texture and depth for the leaves. I used Old Olive and Garden Green.

    Mask the main image. Using a dry Scruffy brush dipped lightly into light green reinker, apply ink around tree and main image with a dabbing motion to create the grassy area.

    TIP: Practice dabbing on a scrap of watercolor paper until you get get the look you desire.

    Remove mask. Dab a mini tip applicator on the light green ink pad and sponge area around image not covered with scruffy brush application. The small tip of the applicator makes it possible to apply color in small areas and to guard the image lines.

  7. Step 7

    Stamp leaves all around tree limbs with Watercolor Minis fern stamp using light green ink. Allow to dry a few minutes.

  8. Step 8

    Stamp leaves again with darker green ink for added texture.

  9. Step 9

    Using a fairly dry small round brush dipped in darker brown reinker, fill in light spots in between leaf areas to complete the look of limbs.

  10. Step 10

    Sketch grassy sprigs around the scene with artist pen. Fill in grassy area with fern stamp using light green ink. Create a hedge with the fern stamp by holding it up and stamping with just a small portion or tip of the stamp.

  11. Step 11

    Add flowers to the hedge with the fern stamp using your choice of classic ink and using the same stamping method as with the hedge. I used Pink Passion.

    Watercolor sprigs of sketched grass with small round brush using darker, more concentrated green reinker. Fill in stem lines in the hedge with small round brush using washed green re-inker to give texture.

    Add more grassy sprigs and grass texture to your scene as desired.

  12. Step 12

    Watercolor main image with reinkers.

  13. Step 13

    Sponge light yellow classic ink around the hedge to highlight edges. Create the sky by sponging light blue ink over the cloud template. I used Barely Banana and Bashful Blue.

  14. Step 14

    Finish your card.

Questions and Comments

We'd love to get your feedback or questions. Leave your comment below.

I think your are just amazing! Thanks for sharing your talent with us. I know I don't know you personally but I feel like I do. I have bought a few sets from you through Cerinda.

Keep on inspiring me!
Robyn  |  Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 3:27 PM
wonderful art work, thank you for sharing
Rebekka  |  Sat May 10, 2008 at 5:05 PM
It truly is amazing to watch your picture come alive from start to finish, Kittie. Your cards are so perfect in every detail and this tutorial is marvelously helpful.
jane  |  Mon May 12, 2008 at 5:58 AM
Thanks for the step by step! I love your scenes!
Cerinda  |  Mon May 12, 2008 at 8:14 AM
so adorable, thanks for sharing it for all of us to try, i know i appreciate the step by step instructions, and look forward doing this technique
elaina fuller  |  Mon Sep 15, 2008 at 7:13 PM
Just beautiful! I love landscapes
Emilie Boyd  |  Sun Dec 28, 2008 at 11:53 AM
Thanks for the tutorial! I have been working on my watercolor technique but am an amateur. Now, I am excited to practice and improve my skills. Thank you!
Nelia  |  Tue Jun 23, 2009 at 5:13 PM
what a lovely idea thank you for sharing Dorothy xx
Dorothy Wilmot  |  Thu Sep 17, 2009 at 10:58 AM
Kittie, Thanks so much for sharing your talent with us. I have found that I have a talent for this too...which makes me smile. I love this landscaping on cards,and would to show you what Ive been doing with it this last week.My stamp sets are like new friends. I do have watercolor minis and every thing nice(smile). Im finding others too, that are just perfect for the landscaping technique. seems like I know you and we are friends. Sue
Sue Krack  |  Thu Jul 8, 2010 at 11:08 AM
This is an excellent step-by-step tutorial. The visuals are very helpful. I can see where landscaping will add a new level of creativity to my cards. Thanks to Kittie for sharing the technique, and thanks to SCS for keeping it on the website.
Abby06  |  Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:12 AM
I love your card. Haven't tried this technique yet

but just might give it a go.
Dianne Foxwell  |  Tue Nov 8, 2011 at 5:51 PM
I love this card, I will try it for my grandchilds' birthday. Thank you for all the wonderful tutorials.
patricia pent  |  Wed Mar 6, 2013 at 8:18 PM

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