Beautiful Watercolor Christmas or Thank You Card for Beginners

This watercolor Christmas card will probably be framed as a miniature painting by your friends and family – it’s a beautiful winter scene. Even beginners will have no trouble with easy, step by step instructions, including tips on fixing mistakes and turning the little painting into a professional looking card.

Downloads for Christmas card for beginners

Suggested Colors for Beautiful Watercolor Card

  • Blue – any pretty blue – I used Phthalo blue + Cerulean blue
  • Red – any pretty red – I used Quinacridone magenta
  • Black – any black
  • Opaque white – I use Bleed Proof White by Daler Rowney

Painting Steps for Watercolor Christmas Card

Step 1 – Draw or trace your outline onto your watercolor paper using graphite paper.

outline page for Watercolor Christmas card tutorial

Don’t draw the moon – you’ll get better effects if you just lift out the moon without pencil lines.

Step 2 – Paint the beautiful blue sky and rosy glow for this watercolor card.

Watercolor Christmas Card Landscape Tutorial Step 2 and 3

Mix – mix a puddle of blue and a smaller puddle of red. Test your colors on scrap paper to be sure you like them.

Wet – wet the sky area with clean water, going right over the tree and moon area. Tilt the paper to drip off any excess water.


  • Red – add a little red to the horizon line and let it bleed up. If it does too far, dab some back with a paper towel or thirsty brush.
  • Blue – paint the sky blue, leaving an area of unpainted space between the two colors. You want the sky a very deep blue, so keep adding blue until it’s a pretty sky.
  • Dry well.

Step 3 – Paint the tree well under the bare tree.

Use leftover red and blue to add a little color to the tree well area under the tree.

Step 4 of Watercolor Christmas card tutorial

Step 4 – Lift out the moon using a stencil – easy even for beginners.

Cut a round stencil out of an old photo/watercolor paper/or a laminated advertising flyer.

Hold or tape – the stencil firmly in place (or tape it on).

Wipe off paint – Use Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser to wipe off most of the blue paint. If the paper starts to pill up, stop. If your paper doesn’t lift well, use opaque white paint to add your moon.

OPTIONAL – Add a little yellow, yellow/orange or gold color to your moon.

Dry well.

Step 5 – Paint the bare trees and bushes to finish your watercolor Christmas card.

Brush? – Use a small brush or a special brush for thin lines called a liner/rigger/script brush.

Paint – Paint your trees and shrub with black. Then make a few of the branches even darker for variety.

Step 6 – Fixing and Finishing

Fixing – If paint got on your moon or snow, use opaque white paint to cover any mistakes.

Finishing – Snow? Use opaque white paint to spatter on falling snow. You can also add snow to the branches.

Watercolor Christmas card for beginners by Deb Watson

Color is my obsession, joy and torment - Claude Monet