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Peonies, Ants and Butterflies

Learn to paint step-by-step summer peonies, ants and butterflies in ink and colour

Course Description

About this lesson

In this lesson you will learn to paint peonies, ants and butterflies. We will begin this tutorial practicing a variety of brush strokes, which you will use to paint a single peony flower in ink, following with a lesson of how to paint ants. You will then be able to put the flower and insect creating your first composition of peony and ants.

You will then learn how to paint playful butterflies with ink and colour and create your second composition. And in the third part of this lesson you will learn to create a colourful peony composition accompanied with butterflies, making your own third composition.

You will also learn about a sample of a 15th century peony and ants composition by ink master Hasegawa Tohaku. And enjoy deepening into the meditative nature of peonies.

In this lesson, you will:

  • Learn how to prepare your workspace

  • Learn how to hold the brush and make your own ink

  • Learn step-by-step how to paint peonies, ants and butterflies in ink and colour

  • Use Japanese watercolours

  • Create your very own beautiful ink paintings

  • Deepen your experience of the meditative nature of ink painting

  • Explore a 15th century ink painting of ink master Hasegawa Tohaku

The lesson also includes:

  • Tools and materials check-list

  • Downloadable PDF worksheet to accompany each lesson and form up your own workbook.

  • 3 additional compositions for you to practice in your own time

Upon completion of your lesson you will achieve at least three new composition of peonies and butterflies. And become confident using the Japanese brush, ink, colour, and paper. You will further your understanding of this practice, and discover an open gate to further your own creative journey.


Highlights of what you will paint

Learn how to paint Peonies, Ants and Butterflies

Learn to paint step-by-step summer peonies, ants and butterflies in ink and colour


Meet your teacher

Talia Lehavi is an artist, a practitioner and a teacher of traditional Japanese ink painting. Following years of teaching, her love and passion for this artistic medium has now prompted her to create ArtBrush - online school for the studies of Japanese ink painting. The school is designed for students of all levels, from around the world, who are excited to learn, explore and discover the joy of ink painting and its many facets.

Talia Lehavi Headshot - ArtBrush Japanese Ink Brush Painting Instructor - Artist - London Mallorca Zichron


What our students say about their experience

Katherine - ArtBrush Student

During uncertain times, ArtBrush has been a wonderful source of solace. I joined ArtBrush as a complete beginner, looking to combine my passion for art with my interest in meditation. Japanese ink painting requires such focus, and engenders a great sense of calmness. I have been able to develop creatively and the process has given me the time for contemplation. I would highly recommend these courses.

—  Katherine B.


Included in this lesson

Welcome to your lesson

  1. Promo (0:33)

  2. Welcome to ArtBrush (2:21)

  3. Learning Japanese ink painting - Introduction

  4. Hasegawa Tōhaku white peony (6:25)

  5. Your workspace (1:54)

  6. Tools and materials - The four treasures (5:09)

  7. Making ink and how to hold the brush (3:21)

  8. Your check list (1:03)

  9. Sources for your tools and materials

Peonies, ants and butterflies 芍薬 にアリと蝶 ‘shakuyaku ni ari to chō’

  1. Introduction (3:06)

  2. Brush practice- 'Thin-thick-thin' wave lines (5:09)

  3. How to paint peony leaves (9:32)

  4. How to paint peony buds (3:50)

  5. How to paint a peony flower (9:26)

  6. How to paint ants (6:01)

  7. Peony and Ants - Ink composition I (8:52)

  8. How to paint playful butterflies (8:22)

  9. Painting playful butterflies - Ink and colour composition II (4:58)

  10. Soul meditation - Abundance (1:38)

  11. Peonies and a Butterfly - Colour composition III (12:35)

  12. Outro (2:05)

Bonus Material

  1. Three additional compositions for you to practice in your own time

  2. Peony Haiku - Poetry

  3. Review and ArtBrush students gallery

Learn how to paint Peonies, Ants and Butterflies

Learn to paint step-by-step summer peonies, ants and butterflies in ink and colour


Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?

The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course – you decide when you start and when you finish.

How long do I have access to the course?

How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling and as long as ArtBrush is live online, you have unlimited access to the course across any devices you own for as long as you like.

I am a complete beginner. Is this for me?

Yes! The course is designed with beginners and intermediate students in mind, as well as, those who are keen to deepen their knowledge of the field. There are many step-by-step videos that are perfect for anyone just getting started. No previous experience in art or ink painting is required. The course is for mixed-level abilities.

I am a professional artist. Is this for me?

Absolutely! Many professional artists and designers have been studying with Talia and have benefited from the Japanese art and practice aesthetics. The courses offer new ways of observing nature and understanding painting composition and space in a way unique to Japanese ink painting.

How do I enrol on a course?

To enrol on one of the ArtBrush courses, click on any "Enrol" button on this page and complete your purchase. You will need to create an account with us to purchase and access the course. If you already have an account, log in to complete your purchase. Then, you'll have access to the course, and your purchase details will be emailed to you.

Would I need any special tools and materials?

Yes! Please view the short 'check list' video and PDF inside the course for help in setting up your workspace and for preparing your tool-set for the courses. You can choose from a selection of three comprehensive sets of tools and materials available via ArtBrush.

You can do this via the school on:

These sets were all made in Japan and curated by Talia for the school. Each set is of high quality and designed to last a lifetime. Expect up to 2 weeks for delivery, local taxes are not included. Alternatively, depending upon where you are based around the globe, you may get individual tools and materials at your local Japanese/Chinese art supply shop or at some general art supply shops. You can also find online a variety of budget sets. Once you learn and understand about your toolkit, you will be able to easily sort out what you need.

What software do I need to access the course?

Please simply ensure that you have updated your internet browser to the latest version. If you run into any technical issues, we advise to clear your cache, cookies and browsing history. For any further technical enquiries please contact:

What if I wish to cancel?

We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 7 days and we will give you a full refund.

How can I get further help and ask a question?

At any time, our team will help you at:

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