You may have noticed the Sketchbook Challenge button on the right hand side of my blog. (click the button for more information on the Sketchbook Challenge) Yesterday I received the watercolor pencils I ordered for the Challenge. I'd really like to be able to draw better and the only way to learn is to do it. So I'm trying.
The reviews all said that they create intense color, not the usual kind of washed out color of watercolors. They were right! I enjoyed playing with these this morning and learned several things. Specifically, I learned why you should use watercolor paper when doing a watercolor project. My first attempt with these was in my sketchbook. It is made with thicker paper, but it is not watercolor paper. The paper bubbled up badly as soon as I put water on it. Luckily, I have some watercolor paper that I bought for my son. I haven't given it to him yet, so now it is mine. Maybe I'll share though.
I think a more experienced watercolor artist might find using these pencils a bit tedious. It requires two steps whereas watercolor paints require just one. First you color an area with the pencil. They color just like colored pencils. Then you drag a wet brush across the colored area and watch the magic happen.
I took some photos of my play. Here is my sketch with a little coloring. Notice that the bottom half circle is darker than the others along the stem. I had already put water on that one before I thought to grab my camera. But it gives you a really good idea of the color change that happens with water.
Then I drew in more details on the flower part and finished coloring. On this photo (below) I have painted with water the right half of the stem and all of the half circles.
Then I painted the whole thing with water. I tried several different sizes of brush and found that a very small, fine brush worked best for me. I may need to get a few more. You can really see a dramatic difference in the colors between the above and below photos!
Lastly I outlined (redrew my original pencil lines) with black marker.
Unfortunately, the center of the flower reminds me of the character in those horror films "Scream." I've never seen the movies, but I've seen images of that character all over the place. So maybe I should call this one Scream Flower. Oh well! I was really just playing with my new pencils and I had a great time with them.