How to Mix Skin Tones in Watercolour

Hi! I’m back on my blog with some new tutorials and reviews.

Here I share with you a rather straight forward tutorial on how to mix skin tones in watercolours. The concept is quite simple.
I’ve swatched light medium and dark skin colour mixes, that are useful when you are painting realistic portraits.


You can see the colours that I used to mix these swatches below, where I give the name of the colour, the code number of the pigment and the brand which is mostly Van Gogh. The colours that are unbranded are my own made watercolours from raw pigments.

Now here are some tips before you proceed to the skin tone swatches.
All light skin tones can become darker by increasing the amount of the darkest colour in the mix. They can also become cooler by mixing the same colours with a cool blue like Cobalt Blue or with Ultramarine Blue if you prefer to avoid Cobalt Blue. I don’t recommend though to avoid Cobalt Violet as it is one of the most useful colours on mixing the lighter skin pinkish tones.

Light Skin Tones I

Light Skin Tones II

Dark Skin Tones

You can also download and see the swatches in HR images in a zip file by clicking HERE.

As you might use different brand of colours and my scanner is impossible to depict with 100% accuracy the hues, ( the accuracy of your screen is also important) I would recommend to mix these skin tones with the equivalent colours of the brands that you already have, in order to be able to see how they actually look like on your own brand and type of paper.

In case you have any questions I’ll be glad to answer them on the comments  below.

Thank you for visiting my website and reading this tutorial!