Playing with the best watercolor paints, an afternoon in the studio painting seahorse

 In Art supplies list, Artistic Inspiration, Behind The Scenes Art Life, Blog Post, Connecting with You, Painting Inspiration, Sharing Creativity, Techniques, Video, watercolor painting, Work In Progress

Playing with the best watercolor paints

Welcome to my studio!

Thought it would be fun to share a video and invite you into my studio for the afternoon.

I am playing in paint with my favorite watercolors.


The Process

I am working on a watercolor seahorse  here.

I spontaneously decide on which colors to use, right after I wet my brush and glance over at my palettes of paint.  I like to work with the wet-in-wet technique which allows my colors to bloom and bleed into each other.


I sped up this video + worked a bit quicker just to show a snippet into my process.

I start with a light drawing of my subject and then get started on painting.  I love painting in the afternoon because the light in my studio is bright and perfect for such happy subjects.

The Inspiration

I always wanted to paint seahorses because I find they have such sweet little faces, and I am enamored with the sea.  It is a great day when you can find yourself immersed in the underwater world of these lovely little ocean creatures.  I am lucky enough to have been raised on the island of Maui, so the nature and beauty of Hawai’i always inspires me with my artistic creations.

My Art Studio

My desk is usually cleared off at the start of a new project; it helps me think better! I don’t normally paint with flowers strewn on my desk, but they are remnants from my birthday presents and I thought they looked extra pretty to share with you. 🙂

I keep two to four containers of clean water on my desk (spring bottled water is great if you have softened water at home, or use hard water straight from the tap).  I make sure to use one container of water for cleaning the paint off the brush first, then a second container for re-wetting the brush with clear water.  In the video you can see my dip into both containers.

I seldom snack or keep drinks in the studio. It would be a real bummer to grab for my paint water as I mistaken it for Kool-Aid. (note: I do not drink Kool-Aid, I have only had it once. But saying, Peppermint Tea, doesn’t make me sound as whimsical and cool as drinking a neon-colored “fruit” flavored beverage).


I hope you’ve enjoyed my video!


Comment below and let me know if you would like to see more, and I will obsessively check my website to see if anyone left a comment.  😁 (not Scary-Obsessively, more like I-Hope-people-watch-this-Obsessively).


Want to know when I release more of these seahorse paintings in my shop?

Follow along with my monthly Aloha Art newsletter to be the first to know!


Sign up HERE.


Much Aloha,



Oh! Here’s a close-up of the finished piece here

Playing in paint-Seahorse watercolor by Maui artist Mika Harmony


Supplies List

I am using two different brands of watercolors: Maimeri Blu watercolors from Italy; I love them so much for their vibrancy and great transparency, and Golden brand QoR watercolors that I love for the intensity of their colors and the way they react to other colors. I think I purchased these at Blick Artist Materials here and here.
For brushes, I always reach for Princeton Select Artiste Synthetic brushes. I have tried many brushes and these are the ones I love the most. They make painting such a joy, and the turquoise handle always makes me smile when I reach for them.

Paper: I use Strathmore Watercolor paper. I love their Series 400 cold press paper. I often get it from my local Aaron Brothers when I run out; or I order it online. 🙂

Recommended Posts
Showing 6 comments
  • Marty

    Loved seeing your process Mika…. ours are very similar aside from mine being digital. If I ever do work with actual water colors, your tips will be very useful. Love the finished seahorse in the teal circle on your desk

    • Mika Harmony

      Hi Marty!

      Thank You! I love that we share a similar process! I admire your work, and have absolutely no idea how to do what you do digitally!! You are a genius.

      If you ever delve into watercolors, let me know! I need to put together a first step process video for my watercolor friends.

      The seahorse in the circle was the first painting I started in this series last week. 🙂 So glad to know you like it.

      Hope you have been having an awesomely creative week.

      much aloha,
      Mika Harmony

  • Pattymac

    What a great video!! And I love the finished Sea Horse!!

    • Mika Harmony

      So nice to hear from you.
      Thank you so much. 🙂 I appreciate you watching my video…and reading through my post. So kind of you to comment.

      Hope you are having a wonderful start to your week. I am working on a new, very special seahorse soon. Can’t wait to share it with you.

      Much Aloha,

      Mika Harmony

  • Debi

    Beautiful work!
    You make it look so easy.

    • Mika Harmony

      Oh You are so very generous with your compliments!! thank you, sweet Debi! Coming from you, a wonderfully talented artist, that means the world to me. xo, mika

Leave a Comment

Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Start typing and press Enter to search