Melbourne13: My Water-soluble Tools

April 20, 2013 | Leave your thoughts

Recently I have been using more and more various water-soluble pencils and pens. And I found using them incredibly versatile last week in Melbourne. I love especially painting over outlines made in by watersoluble tool and fading or losing the line- this is something I picked up during my Singapore trip (one of the many things I learnt from Paul Wang- thanks Paul!)

So here are the tools that I used (and bought!) last week. Plus an additonal one (graphitint warm grey) that I was handed to try when I did this page.

And following is a little commentary on which I used when and why in my Melbourne sketchbook. I hope you don’t mind the long post.
Using water soluble pens and pencils is something that we will be looking at in my upcoming sketching classes in Manly – starting in a few weeks. There are still places available – click here for more details.

In the plane – I used the Derwent Sketching pencil initially but added the Albrecht Durer Indigo water colour pencil(ADWCP) over the top.It was a little stronger than I intended so I started trying to dissolve the lines.

I am finding that I am enjoying sketching my food and cups of tea with pencil more than ink these days. Here is an example… It just feels nicer when I am ‘feeling’ the lines – especially early morning ellipses. Using the Derwent Sketching 4B pencil here. I am finding its lines don’t dissolve away as much as I would like…but then again, looking at this sketch I have hardly touched the lines with my water/paint.

Flinders St Station – as per previous post this was done with about 4 or 5 different coloured water coloured pencil (hmmmm, I probably need to show you my coloured pencil set of colours too!) I found sketching in a dry media SO quick – water and more layering can be added later.

Here is another quick all watercolour pencil sketch using a waterbrush to apply water over the top. (Personally, I prefer adding watercolour paint over the top and losing the pencil strokes more)

Helen Lovett (whose Sketchbooking class I visited on the Tuesday afternoon) showed me here Lyra watersoluble graphite stick so I had to get one!) This quick sketch of the town hall tower while waiting for the tram was done using that. I also used a raw umber ADWCP. I ‘poured’ water over the top using my waterbrush once on the tram (ie. I put a LOT of water on trying to dissolve the line) and you can see how lovely and dark the wash was!

Another waiting sketch. Mainly Indigo ADWCP with the blacker parts being Inktense Indian Ink (LOVE that pencil!) and then I put some ink lines over the top using the Pilot V pen. I have so much fun layering random pens and pencils over the top!

I did the waves using that amazing Indian Ink Inktense – outline and shading and the background outlines with the cretacolour watersoluble graphistick and then added paint over the top. Don’t you love that ink black paint created by the inktense?

Another combination of different water-soluble pencils and paint. I am really loving this technique. I use the pencils for the more linear elements or if I need texture and then paint the big areas.

I am most interested in losing the lines so for this one I tried sketching with the warm grey ADWCP and the more paint I added the more the lines disappear… you are going to see me use this again!

Sketching on a damp page with that warm grey ADWCP –  misty rain was falling on my page and it created a lovely hit and miss line!

Finally… the town hall tower again from the tram stop. This time with the aquamarker- a water-soluble version of the Promarkers- it doesn’t bleed through the page. Very interesting! I want to try a tombow pen which Brenda Swanson mentioned in her interview with Danny Gregory.

Ok…long post but I hope it has inspired you to get your sketchbook out and try something different! It is heaps of fun!

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