Watercolour 'Northern Lights' Painting Tutorial

Recently I have gotten back into watercolour and have been playing around with colour to create some Norther Light inspired skies. Seeing the aurora is magnificent and its variety is vast so offers a lot of inspiration to help recreate those magical winter skies. You can shop the original watercolours in my Etsy shop here.


I love watercolour as a medium, its very soothing to work with and I approach it with a 'less if more' mindset. Its easy to go too far so I usually paint in layers, working on a few pieces at a time. I tried out stretching paper verses painting directly and preferred the direct approach - it works well if you don't paint the entire paper. I then left them to dry fully overnight and added spatters of white or gold paint to create stars and constellations. 

The watercolour paints I use are the Winsor & Newton watercolour box set, brushes are these and the paper is the Daler Rowney watercolour 300g/m2.

have you tried to capture the northern lights?