The Kew Book of Painting Roses in Watercolour – Trevor Waugh


Synopsis: Learn how to create stunning paintings of roses in watercolour that capture the essential beauty of this much-loved flower.

Roses have a special place in both art and culture across the world. Published in Association with Kew Gardens, this stunning book teaches you how to capture their character, colour and form in watercolour, and showcases both historical images from the Kew archives and the author’s own extensive collection of inspiring paintings.

Guided by watercolour artist and rose enthusiast Trevor Waugh, this book begins with clear explanations of essential watercolour techniques followed by a short project that allows the reader to explore the nature of watercolour in a practical way. Particular emphasis is placed on mixing colours cleanly in order to reproduce the purity and variety of this much-loved family of flowers. This is followed by sections on how to gather reference material; how to compose your own paintings; and how to inject your paintings with colour and light. All are accompanied by three further step-by-step projects, each culminating in a stunning painting of your own.

Why I like it:
It will come as no surprise to anyone that we love roses! This is a beautiful book full of the most gorgeous examples of how to paint roses using watercolour.

The content includes:

Foreword from Kew, Introduction, History of Painting Roses, Materials, Techniques, Exploring The Nature of Watercolour step-by-step project, Finding Inspiration, Creating form, Portrait of a Rose step-by-step project, Colour, Rose Blush step-by-step project, Light, Still Life Roses step-by-step project, Capturing the Essence.

We love the botanical paintings of Pierre-Joseph Redouté (1759-1840) who is referenced in this book and an original copy of his wonderful book Les Roses which is held in the Kew Library. Trevor Waugh showcases images from Kew Gardens and its archives alongside his own collection of luminous, inspirational artworks.

What we love about this book is that as well as detailed help to create the projects included, it also encourages you to develop your own painting style, to create your own beautiful paintings of roses.

At a time when many of us are struggling to understand how much our world around us is changing, this beautiful book allows us an opportunity to escape to a more beautiful and tranquil place.

Highly Recommended!

Special Note:

Trevor has produced a number of free videos that demonstrate his fluid style and offer a very useful guide on how to paint particular subjects. All of these are available on his website and YouTube channel – all content is original and copyright to Trevor: and