New tea, Neocolors and a Fude dip pen

December 8, 2023 | 4 Comments

A few weeks ago I got some new organic herbal tea from a new (for me) tea shop in Western Australia and so of course I had to record the occasion in my sketchbook.

The tea packets were not the most exciting objects to draw (all the same shape and colour – only varying in size) but I had fun doing this loose sketch.

I started with some Neocolor II edges and shapes, then added some loose watercolour strokes (using a dagger brush) and then drew over the top with my Fude dip pen (and a little graphite) and then a little more watercolour over the top.

I’m starting to use the Fude dip pen (see this article for details) more and more at home. It creates wonderfully expressive lines and is especially useful for drawing over the top of the Neocolors. It does take a while for some of the lines to dry since it uses so much ink – but I like the smudges!

And just for the record I’m loving my new tea!


  • Patricia Wafer says:

    Great post! Just What I Need is Another new pen! I have two questions what do you put your ink in when you take it out sketching for use with your dip pens? And in the post from last May that you refer to what color did you use for that beautiful pink in the teapot? I’m guessing it’s a quinacridone but would love to know which one. Earlier this year I got the $25 dot card from Daniel Smith. I made color charts for all the colors. I thought it was interesting that he put that Opera pink on the card as it is notoriously Fugitive. But I put it on my chart even though I’ll never use it. This was a mistake because it is so bright you cannot look at the chart without having your eyes be drawn to that color which distorts your color vision when you try to look at all the other colors. So I had to make a little card flap to cover the Opera pink so that I can’t see it unless I lift the card up. Anyway I love that color pink in your sketch and I’d love to know what it is. I use dip pens at home or in my studio but I haven’t taken them out sketching on site. I’ve used various nibs but not fude nibs except on my Sailor pens. I use Tachikawa nib holders which are very comfortable. Thanks for all your great posts! Looking forward to trying one of these pens.

    • Liz Steel says:

      Hi Patricia, I’m sorry I don’t actually know what that was. At the time (prepping for and running my Teacups course) I was experimenting with a lot of different pinks including Quin Pink and Wisteria.
      and yes Opera Pink isn’t my favourite either!

  • Jamie C says:

    I’d forgotten about that dude dip pen. Looks great over the shapes and colors for the tea bags. They maybe simple shapes, but the sketch is lovely!

    • Liz Steel says:

      yes I’d forgotten about it for a few months too! And simple shapes can be the best to explore interesting textures

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