How to colour flowers

June is definitely a wonderful month! The sun is shining, the seasons are changing and nature is blossoming. It is the perfect month for Grow June, an art challenge created to celebrate all things nature. Colour something from the environment and share it with the hashtag #GrowJune to be a part of this challenge. We thought this would be a great time to bring you our guide on how to colour flowers, so sit back, relax and get colouring today!

Flowers are a classic area of colouring. They feature in many designs, whether they are the main focus of the page or form part of the background of an image. We love colouring flowers as they are great for exploring different textures, styles and experimenting with colour. They also look amazing when coloured! Within this guide, we’re going to focus on a few techniques, tips and tricks so your flower colouring can bloom!


It’s time to pick the colours for your flowers and there are many options here! If you are following the example of what the flowers look like in real life, your colour choices can be quite simple. For example, colouring a sunflower the classic golden yellow and brown tones. However, if you want to pick your own shades we suggest opting for a tonal colour palette rather than using contrasting shades. For example, this could be picking the colour blue and using varying tones from a sky blue, into a navy, into a purple tone. We recommend a tonal palette as it brings more depth and dimension to the petals. If you did want to try contrasting colours, take a peek at Colour Theory and pick complementary colours from opposite sides of the colour wheel.


To begin colouring your petals, start with the lightest shade of your colour choices and create a base layer on the petals. Use a light pressure for this, you just want to begin building up the colour softly. From here, you can then begin to use darker shades and continue to build up the colour of the petals. When using the darker shades, again keep a light to medium pressure and create lines from the outer edge of the petal into the centre of the flower. You can use pressure here to experiment with light, for example, pressing harder on the outer edge of the petal and then using softer pressure the closer you get to the middle. Continue building up your petals with different shades using this technique.

We love this tutorial from Dee’s Cards and Crafts on how to colour flowers that uses this style of colouring:

Petal colour gradients

Another option that we love is using those beautiful colours you picked at the start and creating a colour gradient within your petals. Working from the centre of your flower outwards, use the lightest shade, then a darker shade as you move towards the edge of the petals and then an even darker shade. The main thing to focus on here is blending and ensuring that your colours seamlessly fade into each other rather than being harsh transitions.

Check out this time-lapse video from Priya Mehta of colouring a gradient on some flowers to understand the technique more:


Another general consideration when colouring flowers is how you would like to use texture. There are several techniques that you could try depending on how you would like your end result to look. If you would like your flowers to be opaque and have a glossy finish, try burnishing. Burnishing is a technique where you create lots of layers of coloured pencil until the paper no longer shows and there is a shiny finish. Alternatively, if you want a more textured effect a technique like cross hatching might work. Cross hatching is where you layer parallel lines on top of each other in a cross like manner and it is especially effective when shading. There are so many options, so explore texture and these techniques and discover your favourites!

To learn more about these techniques, check out this video from Mr Otter Art Studio that runs through 12 simple colouring techniques to try:

Have fun!

With colouring in general and especially with colouring flowers, there are no rules! Be sure to have fun with your colouring and allow yourself room to explore and get creative with it. We love seeing all of your amazing colouring and can’t wait to see what you make!

If you like our how to colour guides, check out our guide on how to colour dragons, how to colour a mermaid and how to colour a unicorn.

Be sure to share your beautiful flower colouring with us over on our Friends of Colouring Heaven Facebook group and join our friendly, lovely community!


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