A watercolor painting needs to start with a light pencil drawing. If your pencil drawing is too dark, the pencil will spread when you add watercolor.
To do a preliminary wash of color, first wet the area with clear water. Then add the color to your brush, starting at the top and letting the color flow down smoothly toward the bottom. For contrasting areas of color, let one area dry before starting on another in order to avoid one color bleeding into another.
Texture is easier to add with a dryer brush and with a less watery mixture of paint.
Continue to refine the texture. Pay special attention to the eye to bring life to the painting.
Click image to read information about the final illustration.