In general, if you want the background color to show through and become part of the subject, then paint the wash first. If you want to keep your background and your subject clearly and distinctly separate, then be sure to use masking fluid to mask your subject before painting your wash.
With watercolor it’s important to lay down your light colors first and work towards the darker colors. Have patience – there’s no rush. We start with the light colors first because once you lay down the dark colors, it’s hard to undo.
When working with watercolor paints, you want to begin with the lighter colors and then work towards the darker ones. We do this because in watercolors, Â the white comes from the paper, not the paints. So due to the transparency of the paints, your light colors wont “pop” when painted over darker colors.
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