Blending Techniques with Pens & Watercolor - Basics of Hand Lettering Series | Chelle Perea | Skillshare

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Blending Techniques with Pens & Watercolor - Basics of Hand Lettering Series

teacher avatar Chelle Perea, The Lemonade Store

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Blending Fun Intro


    • 2.

      Tip to Tip Blending


    • 3.

      Using a Water Brush to Blend


    • 4.

      Using a Colorless Blender


    • 5.

      Using Markers as a Blender


    • 6.

      Using Watercolor + Pen


    • 7.

      Bonus: Blending with Gelly Rolls


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About This Class


This is the second course of the "Basics of Hand Lettering Series" where Chelle Perea, owner of The Lemonade Store, continues with you on your next phase of your hand lettering journey. She goes over some of her favorite tips and tricks for blending with water-based markers such as Crayola, Tombow, and more. The course provides information on some fun techniques that help you achieve that ombre look to your lettering using markers. To help ensure your success, Chelle has included some freebies in the first course, so if you haven't seen that one yet, head on over! 

Lettering is fun, for all ages and skill levels, and this course is designed to give you some variations and how to "play" with your markers using blending techniques on your hand lettering journey. So let's get started!

For a list of favorite supplies and links to supplies visit:

Meet Your Teacher

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Chelle Perea

The Lemonade Store


Artist / Designer / Writer / Maker

Hi! I'm Chelle (pronounced like Shelly). I like to create all sorts of art, I write, and I also love to share my knowledge with you! Paper crafts, lettering, brush lettering, and watercolors are my jam. I also love working with beads and crystals, as well as crochet and other needlework hobbies. So, you could say, I dabble in lots of things, because creating makes my heart happy

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Level: Beginner

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1. Blending Fun Intro: payscale share its Shelly with lemonade store. And today, for this part of the basics courses that we're going to dio, we're gonna talk about blending techniques with water based markers and your hand fluttering. So I'm going to show you some of my favorite tips and tricks that I like to dio and these air super easy, super fun You can have kids join in. I mean, we're talking. Let's just create and have a blast. So let's get started. And I hope you like it will go over a couple of different pens that I like to use. We're talking Corollas art line sticks. Um, pen tell brushed touch sign pens. But you can use this with all sorts of different things. So let's get started as part two of our basics. Training of lettering. Thanks 2. Tip to Tip Blending: Okay, So for this blending technique, I'm calling it the tip to tip technique and you take a lighter color here. I'm using the Tom Bo Gilbert pens that I'm taking two colors, a lighter and a darker. And while I'm holding the lighter color, I'm transferring some of the darker pigment onto the tip of the lighter shade. And what that's going to do is, as we're writing across the page, you're gonna get a really nice ombre effect. So you just start writing and, um, you'll see like it starts out darker. And as you go through every letter, you get a little bit less in a little bit less of the darker pigment pigment. And it's just a really cool, fun way to get some blending in there. And the paper that I'm using here is £32 premium choice laser jet paper by HP, and I just like that. It just it really glides and preserves your pens a little bit better so you can buy whole ream of that versus maybe, just like a small thing, a marker paper, which works just as well. So let's try the same technique tip to tipped with our Crayolas, and I'm gonna use, um, bright pink and a blue. And the way that this is gonna blend because you're using more of the side of your marker. You kind of get like a cool outline effect with the Creole A because of the cone shape. If you want to have it be more blended. You would just make sure to not just do tip to tip at the very top, but do it like the tip on the side so that while you're writing, you really get some of the other pigment on the cone shape of the pen. And I usually like to keep a scratch piece of paper so that as soon as I'm done blending, I just mark the paper until it runs clear and the market is is pretty much self clean themselves. And then that's it. You put the cap on and store it for later use 3. Using a Water Brush to Blend: Okay, So for this next blending tip, we are going to use watercolor paper. And here I'm using the Kansan Excel. Or you can use the mixed media paper, something that allows you to get water on the paper without it tearing the paper. And so, basically, what we're gonna do is we're gonna use our water based markers in this case, and then we're going to use a water brush amusing a size four here, round brush. And after we've laid down our INC with the marker, we're then going to use the water brush to mix the colors together. So let's walk through this and start with our first set of pens. So we're going to start out with, um, art line sticks, brush markers, and you're going to go ahead and just letter, letter, whatever it is that you wanna, um, letter. So here, we're gonna gonna write the word art line. Okay, so I like to make my strokes my down strokes a lot thicker. So you're going to see me going back over where the down strokes are, and that's actually a good way to kind of learn where the down strokes go. But remember heavy pressure on your down strokes. Light pressure on your up strokes. It's a little bit harder to do with the art line stick markers, because just the way that the tip is so I just really like to emphasize it by going back over the down strokes with the thicker stroke. And that's going to give us a little bit more room when we add our second color. And I always start out with a lighter shade first and then I'll pick up the darker color. And this is actually black that I'm putting on top of this burgundy color and that allows us to see a transition as we go from the dark to the burgundy. So in this case, and putting the darker shade on the top, and you kind of want toe work quickly because you don't want the ink to totally dry before you go and add your water brush. So I'm gonna zoom in here so that you can see So I had just a small amount of water onto my brush. Keep a paper towel nearby so that you can dab off extra water and then you're gonna go in and right where that between the line where those are you, just gently pull down the darker color and in between wipe off extra water so that you're not getting black all the way down. It's almost like you know, you're you're cleaning your brush off in between. So I start up at the black and I go down and then I'll allow it to kind of get pulled, amusing the water to pull the color and the pigment down into the lower parts of the stroke , and you can kind of play around that. That's what's so fun about this is that you might want more block to come down, so you're gonna add more. Maybe use more water or wipe your brush less often. Um, totally up to you, that's that's the fun part of it. So just remember, don't get ahead of yourself because you don't want the ink to dry right away. It will loosen up when you add water to it. It's just a little bit easier to blend. If the ink is still, um, what? And you'll notice that when you start adding the water, it does kind of give it this water color effect for basically just using the water based ink as a watercolor here, Um, and it really is a cool effect. So maybe more water is the look that you're going for and I'll just gonna let this one run through and we're gonna do a couple different pen so that you can see that it's still the same concept of what we're trying to accomplish here and how to do it. It's just weaken do with a whole bunch of different pens. So, really, as long as it's a water baby, water based marker, like a Creole A or a Tom vote or these pen tells or a mate tea licks any of these pens that are water based give it a shot. It might work really well. So you're not limited to just the ones that we're showing here. This is just the concept for you to see that it can be done with so many different pens. So for the next uh, set of pens, I want to show you Let's use the small brush tip in. So this is the pen tell touch sign pin. And first we're gonna let her with the lighter of the two colors and you can use more than two colors, but since we're just keeping it to the basics, I want to show you how to do this with two colors. But then you can add three colors if you can just have a blast and do whatever you want with it. And so letter with the lighter color and then go and get your darker color. And we're doing a blue for the darker shade here, and I'm just gonna let opposite. We'll do it opposite. So here, let's add some blue on the bottom and I'm using a very light amount, and I'm adding it to my down strokes, and I'm gonna use a very small watercolor brush. And probably a size zero is what I 01 something like that very, very small. And just the slightest bit of water is going to help move that pigment to blend into the yellow. And our goal here is to kind of get like a green shade that's gonna go in between and you can see just to the left. I have my little paper towel, and I keep dabbing off any extra water so that it doesn't get like blobby on your paper, but any any extra water on these? I actually think it adds character to the lettering, so it just makes it look more like a watercolor. Peace. So the key with this method just to kind of, um, retouched on what we were doing is make sure you're using the right kind of paper, so you want it to be some sort of a watercolor paper, or you want it to be like a mixed media paper, something that can withhold adding water to the paper. If you were to just use, um, copy paper, it'll it'll just tear through it. It's not. It won't be able to hold up to that at all, and also you can experiment with tons of different colors. Like when I did the one with the art line. I used black on it, and I don't think that that's something I normally would have thought of. But it ended up giving me that really dark, rich color. And look how gorgeous the colors are when you blind with the yellow and the blue. So have fun. Enjoy mixing the colors, and it does take a while for this process to happened because you're going kind of slow to to drag all the water and in between your dabbing your brush or getting water. So just take your time. It's going to take. It doesn't happen super quick. I guess sometimes you see videos where it looks like it's happening very quickly, but in reality it's not. Those are just the sped up videos. So have funds you on the next lesson, and we'll try another technique on the next one. 4. Using a Colorless Blender: Okay, So for this technique, we're going to go over the colorless blender. And this is one that Tom Bow makes as part of their deal Brush pen sets. There's like one in every set, and it's the end 00 Penn. And it actually has, like no pigment to it is just clear ink, I guess in there. I'm not really sure how how the hell chemistry and science works. But let's go through how you would use this colorless blender. It's actually pretty cool. There's quite a few different ways to utilize it. So let's go over the 1st 1 Okay, so big two colors and I always start out with the lighter color. First, we're going to use a pink and purple, and I'm gonna do my main lettering with the lighter color. So let's just right, Tom Bow here. Remember heavier pressure on the down strokes, light pressure on the ups drugs. And if you need to kind of get refreshed, you can always refer to the first in the Siri's or we go over all of that. So you're gonna write out your word, and the key with that I find is in the paper you can't really do this type of blending with regular copy paper or even the £32 paper. It starts to shred if you if you move around the ink too much. So I'm using watercolor paper. And so what? The darker color. You go in there and you add, Where do you want to put the darkest of that color? And I'm going to do it on the bottom here. You could also use going back to paper. You can also use, uh, you can try mixed media paper, but I found that watercolor is kind of the best. But be careful your pens if you when you're first starting out. Thomas It might fray a little bit, so maybe use these with ones that are already kind afraid until you kind of get down the process. So you take your colorless blender and you have an extra seat sheet of scrap paper nearby, and you start to move the darker ink where you want it, and I keep removing. The ink from the color was blender, so that every time I go up higher, it's a lighter. It's less amount of that pink, so you're going to get that blended ombre effect. So let's zoom in and you can kind of watch with a little bit closer. So I'm gonna add to the bottom, and it's a good amount of ink, and then you're gonna grab your colorless blender. Make sure your scrap piece of paper is nearby and slowly start dragging the ink up. Wipe off your colorless blender so that you have less ink on there and you can blend it up . And you just keep doing that until it fades out on to the top, and that's gonna help you get that blended look. It's really easy if you break it down into steps. I know sometimes you see this, um, online. You're like, Wow, how did they do that? And it's actually just mostly a time consuming thing. You need to act quick enough to make sure that the ink hasn't totally absorbed into the paper, which is another reason why you want to use watercolor paper. It will sit on top of the watercolor paper a little bit longer before you start to blend it in, because you won't get it to move once the ink is absorbed. I mean, maybe a minimal amount, but not like not as easy as this is. So paper is key, and you wanna work on Lee one or two at a time. If I were. If you were first starting out doing this on Lee, do one at a time. I liked if I if he saw me put down to then I have to work fairly quickly to move the pigment up before absorbs into the paper, and that's that's basically it. So lay the ink down, use your colorless blender and have a scratch piece of paper next to you so that you can wipe off in between as you are blending it into the lighter of the color. So what happens to your colorless blender is that you might get a little bit of stay niche on the tip of it, but it's self cleaning, so, ideally, if you wipe it right away and clean it on a scratch piece of paper when you're done, it should go back to normal. And like I said, Thies, these will come in almost all the packs of these Tom Bode ill Barsebaeck pen. So I've got a lot of them and I'm not really worried that if, um, I was afraid or something happens. Um, I'll just, you know, use it for something else. So let's go on to another that that you can do with these pens. Okay, So using the colorless blender and I'm just going to use an acrylic block here you can use , um, Tomba has their own palette that you can use. You can use a Ziploc bag or anything Plasticky that doesn't absorbed the ink. So you're gonna lay your ink down onto that surface, and then you use your colorless blender as a marker and you pick up the pigment with your colorless blender, so I made sure it was clean first, and then you can pick up your color, and then you can just let her with it. So it's a kind of a cool way to mix two different colors together or create your own palette of colors and gives you just a lot of versatility so you would use That's all you need. I mean, that's just another. Another thing you could use with these pens. So if you haven't used your colorless blender, and I'm sure there's others out there as well, I'm just familiar with the Tom Bo the most. Um, this is some fun ways that you can incorporate it into your hand lettering. So I hope you guys learned a lot on this little segment and have fun. You can create rain bows you can. I mean three colors for colors. There's a lot of inspiration out there for using the Tom bows, and you can just, you know, if you're on instagram. I think if you actually just look up the hashtag Tom bow drill brush pens, you'll see so many wonderful pieces out there. So have fun. See you on the next segment and let's go on to the next one. 5. Using Markers as a Blender: so using another marker as basically a blending tool is a fun trick. So I'm using an acrylic block here, and you can use anything that's plastic or glass, and you put the color on top with a marker, and then you're picking it up with another marker. This is one of the easiest things you can do. You can use a Ziploc bag like I said, plastic, and this is just an acrylic, um, stamp holder that I'm using. I just like to put it there cause I could see the color and it's easy to clean, and that's one of the easiest ways to blend with another marker. So let's go on to another way to blend with markers. So in this one, I'm using just some basic core Eola pip squeaks and you can use. You can do this mess that method again with any of the other water based markers, But here I'm going to use the darker color and instead of using a colorless blunder, So let's say you don't have a colorless blender. You use the same color that you used toe letter with as your colorless blender. So see, I'm dragging the color up, wiping it off in between. You'll see me move out of frame and thats me, wiping it off. And I'm just dragging the darker color up. But using the original light pink. So I switched colors here so we can kind of see a couple different ones. So when a letter with the dark pink and when I grabbed my dark purple and then I'm gonna go grab my pink again and start moving the purple up, wipe it off, grab some more, and that gives us the same idea as using the colorless blender. But you're using what you have on him. Maybe you just have the markers. So I wanted to make sure I should you guys how to do it, this method as well, so that you can practice if you don't have a Tom Bo collection or anything you know, like that you can use regular Crayola markers and still achieve a really cool ombre effect with blending 6. Using Watercolor + Pen: Okay, So for the final course, our section of the course for this class, we're going to go over a really easy way to blend colors, and all I have here is a jar of some E. Coli ing watercolors. But you can use any water collar and put it in a pallet, and then you can dip your pen into the water color before you write. So it's a very subtle change, since I'm using a yellow pen with orange water color. But you can get a very pretty ombre effect, and I'm just using a regular £32 paper. It doesn't have to be watercolor paper when you do this, because you're really not putting a lot of water on your pen, and you can do this with really any water based marker. But, of course, tested out to make sure it's gonna work, and when you're all done, you white, just like we were doing before you make sure you wipe on a scrappy piece of paper, get the extra color off before you store your pen. And then, on this one, the colorless blender that we were using before I just dipped that into water color, and I started writing, and I'm just kind of showing you guys that hopefully it'll spark some creativity that you can. You can use that colorless blender just by dipping it into water color. And so I just wanted to go over one more here, and this is me using Crayola markers, and for this one, I'm just doing a very faint, peachy color. I think using a lot of color is always easier, and then you can dip into your color of your paint and watch the magic happen. So it is a fun kind of way to get that blending in that ombre effect. And it's really easy. And you can practically mix any color that you want based on what watercolors you have. And it's just a kind of a blast, So that's gonna be the final one of our Siris on blending and for your homework. If you guys could add a project, I would love to see your work. So at a project, show me something you made using one of the blending techniques, techniques and let's support each other. Make sure you put your instagram handle on there. If you are a part of the first Siri's um, that was one of your homework's is to create a separate lettering account for your instagram and let's be a part of the calligrapher community. So good luck. Thanks for watching. And I'm here if you have any questions, and I appreciate all your guys this support, have fun. 7. Bonus: Blending with Gelly Rolls: it's a bonus. Okay, so I wanted to add this little bonus piece of how I do blending with jelly roll pins and the ones that I found that worked The best are the ones that are the Secura men light jelly rolls and I'll pop a picture up here. And basically you can use these pens to blend with just using a very small amount of water . So I'm gonna use three different colors here and blend them all together so that it gives it a very smooth transition. And I am just actually doing this on a journal notebook that I have. It's just it's not very thick paper at all. So you could. This will work on most everything, as long as it's a little bit thicker. So, like maybe £32 paper or watercolor paper, or this is the I think this is the scribbles that matter No book journal, So add your three colors or two colors or whatever you're doing, and once you get the ink down on the paper, you don't want toe. You don't want to walk away and not come back for a while. Is that same concept as some of the other ones that before the ink is absorbed into the paper, you can actually blend it. Okay, so the next step is once you are here, you can grab a water brush, or I'm just using, like a size a very small one on this one size one, I think, and a very small amount of water. And once the water hits the ink on the jelly rolls, it really kind of smooth it out cause the jelly world takes a little bit of time for it to actually dry, so you can make it smooth and then you can blend it. Some of the pigment from the other colors will kind of seep into the other ones, like water color. So it's a really fun way to do coloring. You could I could totally see this on some of those coloring books that, um, have That's really nice paper, you know, like seeing Harry Potter ones and enchanted force and things like that. So you could all sorts of really cool stuff blending with your jelly roll pens, and it's super exciting and just make sure. Like I said, it's the moonlight. I haven't had much success with some of the other ones, but that doesn't mean it won't work. So just with everything else, have fun and experiment. Um, while you do it.