How to Create Home Paintings with Watercolor

Have you considered painting watercolor homes for fun and a way to “travel” to other places?

Painting home scenes with watercolor may be easier than you think, and it’s certainly a lot of fun!

From a young age, I learned books were the portal to a wide world of travel and exploration. As I got older, I wanted more of an active role.

Adulthood meant I could travel without waiting for someone to take me or permission to go! My first solo trip to the ocean is a precious memory. I spent hours walking up and down the beach, enjoying the waves, inhaling the saltwater air and admiring the homes with their big, bay windows. Beach homes have such a different look to them than houses in our “regular” lives, don’t they?

Painting homes is one way to remember the places I’ve traveled to.

Other times, painting home scenes with watercolors and micron pens is a way I put myself in different places. Sometimes I paint homes in a specific location or inspired by a home in real life. Other times I create from my imagination.

Sharing creative classes on YouTube is fun, but there are limits. In the creative courses in The Creative Season shop show all the detail, but the YouTube videos I limit sharing to what I can paint in the session. The goal is to keep each YouTube video somewhere between fifteen to twenty-five minutes which means the finish work often gets left out.

So I’m able to share the essence of the painting, but not the fun details.

In this post, I list out ways you can use color and small details to add personality and spunk to your watercolor paintings and share detail work with micron pens. There are a number of sizes of micron pens. I typically use an 05 or an 08.

If you’d like to paint a home, then add in these details, here is the YouTube video tutorial.

*Note, whenever using micron pens, be sure to allow the paint to completely dry. Otherwise, the wet paint will ruin the tip of the pen.

You’ll notice I paint many of these homes from a straight on view. That really helps to eliminate the challenge of having to create the different perspectives a side angle would require. This allows me to focus on more of the fun, stylish details of the home scene: the windows, the wreaths, the mailbox, the garden, etc.

Here are three tips for adding detail to your watercolor home after the initial painting is complete.

Tip 1 – Clean Up the Mess with Your Micron

After the painting dries, go around the “messy” or bleeding parts of the watercolor and lightly sketch to create a delineation of where the borders of an object should be.

When I painted the wreath in the video, it was a bit of a muddy mess! I used the micron pen to gently show the direction of twigs in the wreath, helping to create the look I was hoping for.

Tip 2 – Add Stylish Detail

Use the micron pen to establish detail. In the home below, I used the pen to emphasize the look of a brick home.

Before it was a red home. Now it looks like it might be found in New England.

Tip 3 – Create Drama with More Paint

Paint another layer of paint to deepen shadows and for color emphasis. In the small home here, I came back in to add more paint to create the shadows around the tree, the house and under the windows. Shadowing doesn’t call out for attention to the shadows, but it adds to the dramatic sense of the painting overall.

I hope this inspires you as you paint homes with watercolor and pen. It’s a relaxing endeavor, especially when I don’t stress too much about the colors. As you can see in this painting below, I’ve been playing with a number of different color schemes, including a holiday theme (a bit of a sneak peak of what’s coming in the winter).

Like every endeavor, some of these projects turn out better than others. I wasn’t thrilled with the home on the upper left. I was going for a more autumn look and it’s quite, well, it’s just really bold and color-full! The fun is in the process and I remind myself of that quite a bit 🙂


The Creative Season has a stationery collection specific for real estate professional being developed right, thus the “sold” signs on some of the paintings. If you’d like to see the available stationery designs, you can find them here in the shop or if you prefer to shop on Etsy, find them here.