Illustrate a waterfall
I begin with a very rough sketch of the waterfall and the surrounding environment. I’m keeping it rough, because I want to maintain the spontaneity when I move on to the proper painting stage. I always find happy accidents when I paint an environment like this. I keep this sketch over the top as a Multiply layer, just to act as a guide. I plan to delete it later.
I block in the very basic streams of falling water. Using a textured, medium-size brush, I choose a very light blue, almost white, for the falling water. My strokes are slightly varied but mostly uniform. Pen pressure set to Opacity also helps with the variation. I also add some very basic indications of the mist and disturbed water at the bottom of the waterfall.
I move on to smaller brushes and begin adding a bit of detail. I use the brightest white at the crest of the waterfall because this is where the water is still a solid body, but is beginning to be broken up. I also add some water splashing up from the bottom with varied and random small strokes. I paint some reflections to the settled water at the very top and bottom.
I select an even smaller brush for the droplets of water that are thrown around and I then break up some of the streams near the bottom of the waterfall with a few randomised, jittery strokes. While I’ve been painting I’m bearing in mind how the water moves around the rocks that are at the base of the fall and so I paint some of this darkness showing through.