More about sketching with coloured ink

January 6, 2015 | 2 Comments

 Another tea cup sketch late last night and once again playing with different coloured inks (among other things). It is strange how I sometimes feel guilty drawing teacups over and over again but often I just don’t have much time or brain space for something else. And the act of sketching my cuppa is a good way to wind down at the end of a busy day when I haven’t managed to sketch for myself.

I must say that I am really loving using different coloured inks in the one sketch like I did here – mixed raw sienna, mixed grey, cyan, and green. I was also testing the time I had for the DeA ink to dry and how much the ink dispersed when drawing into wet paint.


I think that I am more interested in using multiple colours than just using a non-black colour eg. this sketch using all mixed burnt sienna.


I am finding it curious that when I use raw sienna ink for my outlines  it doesn’t feel as convincing as when I use a similar coloured brown sienna watercolour pencil . With the ink I needed to add some darks.

Here is a watercolour pencil sketch from 2013 to compare. I am talking about my feeling at the time and something I can’t quite put my finger on yet, but I am not necessarily comparing the results.


I am a little surprised that I had the urge to put some magenta in a pen but I think that might be somewhat teacup related – I have a number of teacups with pink flowers!


Writing with magenta ink is certainly a little out of character! I don’t have a lot to do with pink as I wore it as my school uniform for 6 years in high school and never quite fully recovered. Here is some experimentation with pink flowers using the magenta ink (and the raw sienna again!) – decoration for my Sunday note page.


I have been also a little surprised by how much I am using and planning to use the cyan. Here is an ‘in progress’ photo of my sketch of the blue door from Cockatoo Island last week.


Here is the final piece again.


I love working with the coloured textured water soluble line of watercolour pencil but the transparency of these ink lines and the glow particularly of the mixed raw sienna is something new and very special! Here is a crop from my other sketch from last weeks visit to Cockatoo Island, using the cyan and raw sienna.


I feel very privileged to have been sent a set of these colours as I know that it is very hard to find stock of De Atramentis Inks at the moment (please don’t ask me where to buy it as I not sure myself!) I am having fun trying different ways of mixing ink in a measured way either with eye dropper (these are bottles made by Derivan) or just syringing into a half filled convertor/ cartridge and shaking it up. As you can see my brown ink is going down very fast! I might have to start rationing…but oh! I love that raw sienna mixed ink!

2 Comments

  • Arlene says:

    De Atramentis was very smart to send you their ink. All around the world we are salivating to get hold of it, thanks to you! I snagged a sample of the Document Green from Goulet Pens. Super 5 has some waterproof inks, too, and I got a sample of their Australia which I really like—brownish, purplish dusty red.

    Arlene Abel Lennox

  • Liz Steel says:

    I would love to try the Super 5 inks as well. I got some Frankfurt at the USK Symposium but the Super 5 pen was too heavy for me to use.

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