My First Steps With Inktense
I ordered a set of Derwent Inktense pencils from Blick Art Materials and I’m doing my first project in them. Inktense are water soluble ink in pencil and block form. This makes it easier to work with than traditional ink in liquid form. I’d worked with India Ink a while back and really enjoyed it.
Since Inktense is a water soluble medium, I'm working on watercolor paper. Inktense pencils should not be confused with watercolor pencils, however. Inktense will not lift like watercolor. Once it's dry, it's permanent. Don't worry, though. If you don't like a color you put down, you can always go over it later.
For best results, I’ve learned that it’s best not to apply the pencils directly to your project. If you do this, the pencil will appear gritty even after you blend it out with water. Instead, rub your pencil on a separate piece of paper or board, add water, and apply that mixture to your project with a brush. To mix two or more colors together, layer them on top of each other and do the same thing you would do to blend out one color.
I hope to have more inktense tips for you in the future. In the meantime, I recommend the tutorials of Lisa Clough of Lachri Fine Art and Shana Rowe Jackson of Caution Artist at Play, both of which you can find on youtube. Lisa's artwork is also on the box for the pencils and the Inktense blocks.
I’ve recently dove back into oil pastels. I’m reminding myself that most of the same principals I’ve been practicing when it comes to color use with acrylics and watercolor will apply with these.
One of these principles is to layer multiple colors in one place. The grass will have a yellowish green base, darker green strips and brown spots. Besides being blue, the lake will have the green reflections from the bushes that are above it.
Another one is to use less of "strong" colors, like red and purple, and more of "weak" colors", like yellow and orange. For some of the green in the grass, I put red down first and then green on top, because I knew the green could not overpower the red as easily as the other way around and so I would get a nice, muted green color.
When you start with another medium, you don’t have to start from zero.
I made a video about what I was learning when I first started using oil pastels. You can watch it here.
Painter of portraits and wildlife