In today’s episode of Rankin & Bass tributes – it’s Rudolph and Clarisse the reindeer out on a special date! A lot happened to get to this point with a finished painting…and I’m glad I went through it even if it was tough. I learned a ton from painting it wrong, and even if I didn’t recover from all those things – and made new mistakes – the result was nice enough I’m willing to put this out there to show you what not to do! 

Tutorial: Watercolor Fix-it tips

When I mess up…you benefit. LOL!

Watch the video below and scroll to the end to leave comments or questions — or click HERE to watch it on YouTube and leave comments over there. I read both dutifully!

Bonus tips 

Some things that weren’t in the video:

When struggling, make part of your painting something you KNOW. I know how to paint a galasy sky. That built up my confidence to get back on the horse – I had been feeling terrible after messing up so many attempts!

Save the best bit for last to help pull you through: like the red nose. I left it for the end, and told myself not to paint it til I was happy with everything else already!

Do you struggle with replicating things exactly?

Whether photos or art – do you find it hard to try to redo something that someone else already nailed? Does it discourage you when it’s not like theirs? 


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  1. Saunders Waterford Cold Press Sheets
  2. Grumbacher Miskit
  3. Galaxy sky:
    1. New Gamboge
    2. Quinacridone Rose
    3. Prussian Blue
    4. Nickel Azo
    5. Da Vinci Mottler Flat Wash
    6. Winsor and Newton White Gouache
    7. Toothbrush
  4. Trees:
    1. Prussian Blue
    2. Permanent Alizarin Crimson
    3. Da Vinci Series 17 Maestro Long Needle, Size 9
  5. Deer:
    1. Yellow Ochre
    2. Transparent Red Oxide
    3. Cobalt Blue
    4. Winsor Newton Kolinsky Sable Series 7 Round #10
    5. Winsor Newton Kolinsky Sable Series 7 Round #8
    6. Da Vinci Maestro Kolinsky Sable Round 4


  1. Shannon

    Just gorgeous! You can see the love in their eYes!

  2. Gab

    Oh wow! So pretty

  3. Nancy Mullins

    I’ve never worked much with prussian blue, and expected it to be more staining than it is. Your ability to displace it with yellow was very satisfying to watch when you created the galaxy! Beautiful composition!

  4. June from Minnesota

    those eyes are AMAZING! LOVE the background!
    your “mistakes” would be my greatest achievement 🙂


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