(1). Make three PUDDLES OF COLOR, in this case a good "leaf" green, a brown mixture for the bunny, and a pale pink for the flowers. Have the puddles ready to go before starting UNLESS YOU ARE A VERY FAST MIXER.
(2) FORGET A PENCIL DRAWING and use the edge of a one-inch brush to divide your painting surface into three or four main shapes/colors/and values, and paint each of these shapes BROADLY. DONT DRAW WITH THE POINT OF THE BRUSH; use the SIDE EDGE for the drawing line, and the whole flat area of the brush to fill the shape.
(3). With the green color CARVE OUT (WITH THE SIDE EDGE OF YOUR BRUSH) your bunny and flower shapes, FLATTENING AND LIFTING the brush as needed to get narrower or wider strokes. Don't PAINT the flowers, LIBERATE them from the background by painting THE NEGATIVE AREAS.
(4). DARKEN YOUR GREEN behind the bunny by adding brown to the green, and carve out the bunny's ears more closely. The dark will not only shape the ears, it will thrust the bunny forward from the background. While the paint is still damp, lift some of the brown with a clean, damp brush where needed to highlight its brow ridge and part of the ears.
(5). Lastly, use a #8 or #10 round brush to draw details (eyes, veins of leaves, bunny's claws, etc.). You can leave a small holes for the white highlights in the eyes, or apply a tiny bit of opaque white after everything is dry.
THE KEY TO THIS EXERCISE IS TO WORK FAST, SIMPLY, WITH A HIGH DEGREE OF CONCENTRATION. THIS SKETCH WAS DONE IN FIVE MINUTES AS A DEMONSTRATION FOR A STUDENT. YOU WILL BE USING ALL THE KNOWLEDGE YOU HAVE ACCRUED FROM EVERY SKETCH OR PAINTING YOU HAVE EVER DONE, AND THE SPEED ALLOWS YOU TO LARGELY BYPASS YOUR LEFT BRAIN, AS THEY SAY, WHICH THINKS TOO MUCH AND SLOWS YOU DOWN. (PRETEND YOUR TRAIN IS LEAVING IN TEN MINUTES AND YOU NEED FIVE MINUTES TO GET TO THE STATION.)
USE THE BEST RAG WATERCOLOR PAPER, ANY WEIGHT (I USE ARCHES #140 OR #300), AND TWO BRUSHES: 1" FLAT AND SMALL (NOT TOO SMALL) ROUND FOR THE CALLIGRAPHY (DRAWING). USE LOTS OF WATER AND PLENTY OF PAINT.
REMEMBER, THE BUNNY AND FLOWERS ARE ALREADY ON THE PAPER, YOU JUST HAVE TO "LIBERATE" THEM. DOESN'T MATTER HOW WELL DRAWN YOUR SHAPES ARE.
DON'T "FIX 'EM" TO PIECES. This is a great secret that no one believes, no matter how many years I keep saying it. The sketches are better and more interesting, and more "yours" than you think.
MEL STABIN DID A WONDERFUL BOOK ENTITLED "SIMPLE, FAST, AND FOCUSED." THAT SUMS UP THIS SKETCH, I THINK. I LOOK MORE FOR ESSENCE, OR "GIST" OF THE WORK, THAN THE MECHANICAL PERFECTION.
JOHN SLOAN WROTE A BOOK CALLED "THE GIST OF ART."