Best Watercolor Book for Beginners

Last Updated: April 27, 2022

Watercolor coloring books for adults are becoming increasingly popular as they offer a creative outlet that is both therapeutic and easy to learn. When choosing a watercolor coloring book for beginners, try unnumbered ones that will help hone creativity. This will help you get the most out of your watercolor experience and avoid frustration.

Altenew Watercolor Coloring Book and Altenew Woodless Color Pencils on a White surface along with DIY cards and flowers

Watercolor Coloring Book

How Do Watercoloring Books Work?

Watercolor coloring books are made with paper suitable for watercolor, inks, gouache, and even paint. Unlike regular coloring books, watercolor coloring books have pages that can easily be stripped from the spine, making coloring more convenient. This also prevents the water from soaking the next page. It’s important to remember these when working with your first watercoloring books.

We’ve created this blog to help you out if you are unsure where to start. Our watercolor coloring books are perfect for starting this relaxing hobby with beautiful designs and quality paper.

Pages from the Altenew Watercolor Coloring Book and the Watercolor 12 Pan set on a blue surface

Floral Images From a Watercolor Coloring Book

How to Prep Coloring Books for Watercolor

Preparing watercoloring books is the same as preparing watercolor paper. You can lightly mist the page with water or dampen it with a wet brush when you remove a sheet. On another note, you are not required to prep watercolor coloring books. You can directly work on it without removing the sheet.

Altenew Watercolor 36 Pan Set and pages from the Altenew Watercolor watercoloring book

Watercolored Floral Images

Must-Try Watercoloring Books for Beginners

These watercoloring books are extra special because they have 2 versions of designs where you can achieve a no-line watercolor look aside from a lined design. Separating the pages from the book (without ripping apart the rest of the sheets) is effortless.

1. Exotic Blooms Watercolor Coloring Book

The Exotic Blooms Watercolor Coloring Book features beautiful compositions of exotic flowers. If you love all things floral and botanical, this is the book for you. Floral designs are also one of the best subjects that beginners can work on. In real life, flowers and greenery come in all sorts of colors and patterns that can help colorists compose their designs.

Altenew Exotic Blooms Watercolor Coloring Book and pages colored with watercolor brush markers

Exotic Blooms Watercolor Coloring Book

2. Altenew Watercolor Coloring Book

Here's another floral watercolor coloring book for beginners. The designs are absolutely relaxing to work on, with thin lines and beautiful flower compositions. Like the first watercolor coloring book, this one contains 2 versions of the same design. One in black and the other in gray. These two versions allow you to paint lined and no-line images, respectively.

These watercoloring books are made with high-quality, 100% cotton, cold press watercolor paper, with a weight of 300 gsm— just the right watercoloring book quality for beginners and advanced colorists! They allow you to color with regular colored pencils and watercolor pencils too! So you will have the option to change your coloring medium.

Altenew Watercolor Coloring Book, Altenew Watercolor Pan Set, and Altenew Brushes laid out on a craft table

Beautiful watercolored Flower

How to Use Watercolor Pencils in Coloring Books

Watercolor pencils provide beginners with more control of the process. You can use watercolor pencils to color the pages like any regular colored pencil. When you are done filling in the design, you can use a regular paintbrush or watercolor brush marker filled with just water and activate the colors. With watercolor pencils, you can choose to partially activate the colored areas or all of them to achieve a complete watercolor finish. Allow the page to dry after wet brushing. Once dried, you can even go over any areas again with your watercolor pencils for a more vibrant look.

Altenew Colored Pencils and Altenew Exotic Blooms Watercolor Coloring Book

Coloring With Colored Pencils

Can You Paint in a Coloring Book?

Short answer: Yes! You can try gouache and other paints on a watercolor coloring book. However, keep in mind that different types of paint will react differently to watercolor paper. For example, it might take longer or shorter for the paint to dry. Experiment with a small space on the sheet before coloring the rest of the page. 

Altenew Watercolor Coloring Books and Alcohol Artist Markers

Artist Marker-Colored Pages

Whimsical Flower Bunch Coloring Sheets

On this note, you can also use other mediums with other types of coloring books. There are marker coloring books that you can color with alcohol artist markers. The Whimsical Flower Bunch Coloring Sheets allow you to use other coloring mediums aside from watercolor. Use alcohol markers, colored pencils, and even ink with ink blending brushes.

Altenew Whimsical Flower Bunch Coloring Sheets and Alcohol Artist markers

Altenew Whimsical Flower Bunch Coloring Sheets and Alcohol Artist Markers

3 Watercoloring Tips to Get You Started

Coloring can be done in so many creative ways. And if you’re wondering how to start your first page, here are 3 creative ways to watercolor.

1. Using Negative Space for Watercoloring Light Flowers

The negative space on a coloring sheet can be filled with anything you can think of. It is your free space. If you are stuck on what to put there, why not fill it with bold, vibrant colors that make the lined image pop out!

Watercolored no-line image from the Altenew Coloring Book

White Floral Watercolor Composition

In this project, Emily wanted to create truly white flowers. White flowers are quite tricky to paint because nothing is ever truly just flat white; white objects pick up pale reflections of the colors around them. If you just watercolored the blue background and the green leaves, you'd be left with a very flat, two-dimensional image. You have to add shadows and pale reflections of the light.

Watercolored no-line image from the Altenew Coloring Book

White Floral Watercolor Composition

When watercoloring white images, it's important to use lots and lots of water and only a small amount of paint. You can always add color, but it's quite difficult to take it away. So start coloring the negative space, and you’ll get an idea of what kind of tones you can use on the white image.

2. No-Line Watercolor

Erum used a page from the Watercolor Coloring Book for this project and colored it using the Watercolor 36 Pan Set. This watercolor pan set is highly pigmented which suits no-line watercoloring styles.

Colored page from the Altenew Watercolor Coloring Book

Pink Floral Watercolored Image

3. Detailed Watercolor Look

A detailed watercolor look will require more time and patience. Here, Erum started with layers of light washes. She waited for each layer to dry and applied a darker hue with each new layer. 

She added the finer details last using darker versions of the colors used. You can add streaks, spots, and shading just as Erum did. 

Detailed watercolor image of a purple flower from the Altenew Watercolor Coloring Book

Detailed Watercolor Flower

One good tip that was used in this project is to use a stippling technique when you want to soften the colors and details. For example, use a slightly moist round brush and go over the details you want to soften with quick dabbing motions.

Unleash Your Creativity with Watercolor Coloring Books 

Watercolor coloring books are all the rage these days, and it's easy to see why. They feature pages that are specifically designed to be used with watercolor, water-based markers, or paint. This means that you can create beautiful, one-of-a-kind pieces of art without having to worry about making mistakes. So if you're looking for a new and exciting way to unleash your creativity, pick up a watercolor coloring book today!

If you need more watercoloring tips and techniques, you’ll find more on our All About Crafting page.

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