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How to use Life of Colour Brush Pens for Colouring and Shading

Our amazing brand ambassador Quiana from @kikicustomart has shared some of her tips on how to use the Life of Colour Watercolour Brush Pens to colour and shade.
Kiki is incredibly talented, and she drew the picture that she coloured in. No pressure, not all of us are as talented as Quiana, so you can just as easily trace, or simply print out an outline of a picture you really love that you find on the net, or even a kids colouring-in book will do.
 
For this project, Kiki used a waterproof ink. There will be water involved in the blending process, so if you fail to use a waterproof ink, it could smudge. Printing ink from your home printer, or colouring book should work just fine too.
 
Here are her steps.
outline drawing of serendipity for colouring and shading tutorial
Here Kiki has drawn an incredibly cute and quite brilliant outline of Serendipity. Does anyone remember the Serendipity books by Stephen Cosgrove? Well this was on her to-draw list for a while, and this exercise with Life of Colour Brush Pens was the perfect opportunity. This exercise is about being a child again and enjoying colouring in like you used to, but using many more layers than what you remember.
shading and colouring tutorial
Start colouring. Do not be afraid to mix colours that work together. This is not going to be a flat and 1-dimensional artwork. Life of Colour brush pens are all about the blending! Mix your greens to get the shadow effect. Or mix your greens in with a bit of yellow to lighten it up. You can't go wrong...and if you do, make sure you have made a few copies of your print or drawing.
colouring and shading tutorial
Now start filling in the colours. Work from light to dark. Take a look at how then colour looks before it is blended. It is not solid. There is no need to fill in all the white spaces, the water blending brush will help with that. Keep going over the same colour as much as you like, depending on how dark you want to go. I personally like to leave a lot of the colour filling to the blending part.
colouring and shading tutorial
Now is the time to start making it come to life by adding shadows. Take a darker shade of whatever colour you have been using and add shadows. Under the tummy, under the neck, in the creases of the tail etc. If you don't know where the shadows should go, then you can always copy a colour picture you have found somewhere to see where the darker parts or shadows lie. Or make it up and add shadow in the obvious places. If it doesn't look perfect, well, that doesn't matter...this is not meant to be perfect!
colouring and shading tutorial
This is my favourite part about these pens...blending. This is where the magic happens. Fill your blending brush with water, and lightly blend your colours with the water pen. Don't squeeze too hard or put too much water on the page, let gravity do its thing and lightly colour over your picture with the water. If you have different colours on the page like greens and pinks, let each area dry before blending so they don't bleed together.
Now you will see the colour start to smooth out so beautifully, you will be amazed!
colouring and shading tutorial
Voila! This is how your finished product can look. This is what sets Life of Colour pens apart from all other brush pens. It's their incredible ability to blend to produce this smooth finish, and the vibrancy of the colours.
 
I am in love with Kiki's Serendipity. If you want to see more from her please visit her instagram @kikicustomart
 
I really encourage you to give this a go and send in your finished work to show off in our community. It may not look like this first time round, but it certainly will after playing around a bit.
 
If you want your own set of pens, please go here to shop. 

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