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Watercolor textures and backgrounds are pretty popular right now, and you don’t have to look far to find examples of them. I used a watercolor logo in the branding for my Etsy shop and around this blog. While you can purchase backgrounds for use on sites like Etsy or Creative Market, creating your own watercolor backgrounds and textures is super easy and I find it pretty fun.

There are 2 ways that I like to make backgrounds. First is the traditional method using watercolors. You’ll need:

How to create a watercolor texture

A watercolor set. My favorites: Mission Gold and Kuretake

Round brushes. The set I have is no longer available, but this is similar

Watercolor paper. My favorite hot press and cold press pads.

A scanner. I have a Canon Pixma M250 that I bought on Facebook Marketplace for $10. It scans up to 600dpi. 300dpi is the print standard, so that’s more than adequate.

A computer with Adobe Photoshop (sign up for a free 30 day trial here)

Now to actually create our texture! Grab your paints, paper, brushes, and a cup of water. I first lay down a wash in whatever shape I want the texture to be—usually a circle or a rectangle. Then, I add 1 or 2 more colors or deeper shades of the same original color. Have fun with these! You can paint several colors and shapes on one piece of paper. Think about if you want lots of texture in your finished background or if you want a cleaner, smoother look. To add texture, you can dot your loaded paintbrush around and go back over areas that have dried.

How to create a watercolor texture

How to create a watercolor texture

Let your paintings dry. Hook up your scanner and scan your paper at 600dpi. Import your scan into Adobe Photoshop. Go on to part 2 to learn how to remove your white background and prepare your paintings for use on a computer!

How to create a watercolor texture