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A special collage lesson! It uses a secret technique to embellish this watercolour masterpiece.

Final Piece


  • Watercolours
  • Small paintbrush
  • Coloured pencils
  • Collage material (optional)

Instruction Video


  1. Start by having a good look at the reference and roughly sketching out your
    Sardine tin.
  2. Next either draw in your fish freehand or transfer the large fish. (Do this by drawing over the sardine with a pencil on the printed side, then turn the page over and position the fish on your page. Holding firmly and being careful that the paper doesn’t move at all, scribble firmly over the back using the side of your pencil (it needs to look really black not too gentle and pale) the sardine image will appear on your page ). N.B: You can transfer this 3 -4 times without having to draw over it again, so layer the sardines in the tin and draw over each one before you transfer the next (as otherwise it gets quite confusing!).
  3. Next, using Watercolours, start to paint in all the backgrounds before painting the details and lettering on the tin. Anything goes really, feel free to use coloured pencil, fine liner, whatever takes your fancy! (I used pencils to do all the shading and to accentuate the tin shape. I also drew in all the fish scales and additional lettering)
  4. Next. Start to add collage to your fish. place tracing paper over your fish transfer and draw around it, then, hold the tracing paper over your chosen paper (old books or maps work well) and cut the shape out (so no need to draw on the chosen collage paper). You may want to collage a couple and paint the rest or add metallic fins or heads etc.
  5. After you have added all the details and all the lettering, you might like to add a few sequins for eyes or elsewhere too? This is quite a free one, experiment a bit and have fun trying out new styles

Reference / Transfer Material