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Archive for May 18th, 2009

I wanted to see how a Moleskine Watercolor Journal would perform with watercolor markers instead of a conventional brushes. Inspired by the Paeonies that are blooming in my backyard, I decided to make a Paeony the subject of my illustration. Watercolor paint was also employed, but I restricted my brushes to the blender pens.

The crisp surface of the journals paper produces a crisp pencil line, perfect to hide under transparent washes.

The crisp surface of the journal's paper produces a crisp pencil line, perfect to hide under transparent washes.

I started with a pencil sketch of the flower. I love how pencil goes onto the paper in the Moleskine Watercolor Journal. The paper’s surface has a crisp finish that feels like a slightly textured eggshell, so the graphite line I drew was thin and clear, perfect for hiding beneath transparent washes.

I like to start layering the darkest areas first, so as I add color, these areas continue to darken. It also creates an edge where the color changes, so I don’t need to rely on the pencil drawing as the piece progresses.

The first layer of color was created by dipping the markers in water for a diluted color. Light washes of watercolor were also used.

The first layer of color was created by dipping the colored markers in water for a diluted color. Light washes of watercolor were also used.

Rather than use a conventional brush, I chose to use the blender pen from a pack of Tombow Dual Brush Pens. It has a sharp point, a flexible brush and it won’t fray like bristles can. It is convenient to take with you if you like to journal outside of your studio and can be used to create blends with the colored markers. The sharp point is great for using in tiny areas but the line width can be changed easily by changing pressure.

Both watercolor paint and Tombows Dual Brush Markers were used to create multiple layers of color.

Both watercolor paint and Tombow's Dual Brush Markers were used to create multiple layers of color.

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