Sunday, June 5, 2011

My Favorite Sketching Tools - Ink and Wash

Several posts I've made have been Ink and Wash using a Tombow Dual Marker Brush/Pen and Waterbrush.  Another pen is the Rotring but for some reason I seem to prefer grabbing the Tombow Marker.  Part of the reason is that now and then the black breaks down showing blue and pinks whereas the Rotring does not.

The Tombow is there in the center with the end caps taken off.  One side is like a brush pen whereas the other is a finer nylon nib for finer detailing.

Here is an example showing steps with one of my birds I posted some time ago:

First I use a pencil and sketch my subject;

Next I outline and fill in areas with the Tombow Marker.  You can see where I've marked with the black.  A gray marker was also used within the body area for a lighter tone but not showing well in these illustrations.  The gray may seem as dark as the black until you take a wet brush to it.

Another demo I did earlier is here and I followed the same method with this one;

Taking either a Round Brush and water or Waterbrush, I go along the edges wetting the ink and pulling in towards the center.

If after it's dried I need to darken some of the areas, I will take my Tombow Marker with the brush end and scribble ink onto an acrylic surface (plastic butter lid will work or even a bad DVD) and with my brush and water or Waterbrush, mix up a pool of ink to apply to my sketch.  You don't necessarily have to wait for the sketch to dry as you can drop in darker ink from that pool you mixed like you would with a watercolor mix.

The Tombow Marker Brushes come in various colors but do not behave the same.  Some do not bleed as well as others and only experimenting will you learn which work best for what you are hoping to achieve.  I prefer using the black more than any other ink color.

If you click on the color chart, the size should hopefully give you an idea of how well the ink "moves" or bleeds when water is applied to it.

You can get Tombow Markers at many of the online art supply distributors like Dickblick.  (This link will take you straight to the Tombow page giving more information and showing the available sets you can get.)  Check out eBay and also Amazon.  I normally order through Dickblick but have on occasion purchased marker and pen sets through Amazon.


Spiritartartist said...

Wow Susan, Thanks for the pictures! There's a lot of good information here. I think I'll get me a Tombow Dual Marker Brush/Pen and Waterbrush. They look like handy FUN! BTW, I was a little confused - I didn't see a grey marker (in step 2). And I am glad to see you are doing your initial sketches holding your pencil like a wand! Doesn't it make it so much easier to get the big shapes down quickly that way? Good drawing and valuable info.! Can you mix the colors, like wc? Like red+ blue=purple? I'm thinking of just getting black and the primaries. :-D

Susan Bronsak said...

I am correcting my post above and adding another link within the post to point to my first chickadee demo using the Tombow Markers. In that demo I may have explained better where I used the gray.

I use the gray in the body where I don't want a dark black bleed. Also used gray mixed in a pool on an acrylic surface. Hope that makes better sense.

And yes I believe you can mix the inks from what I understand. I haven't done much in that area to really say first hand.

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