Naboo lake retreat

Naboo lake retreat, aka Villa Balbianello on lake Cuomo in Italy. Pencil and watercolor (digitally in mypaint). Watercolor paper texture effect added in Gimp, based on Zoe Piel’s video tutorial.

Naboo lake retreat digital watercolor

Watercolor paper texture effect in Gimp

The texture is not simply a texture layer set to multiply, which would show even in the white spapces. We want the texture to look like it introduces variations in pigment concentrations. Therefore it is used as a layer mask. Here is the process, in short, for Gimp nerds:

  • Open your mypaint export (or whatever you started from)
  • Duplicate the layer – set the top (new) layer to multiply
  • Right-click on the layer in the layers dialog ‘add layer mask’
  • Paste a (large enough) paper texture (greyscale is best) as the layer mask
  • Play with levels for the texture image until you get the dappled look you want
  • Play with the opacity level of the top layer until satisfied

An added benefit of this method is that it makes the watercolor more vivid (my Mypaint originals tend to be a bit weak).