Tutorial: Shade with Niji Brush, Sakura Gelly Roll & Watercolor Pencils by Sharla R. Hicks, Certified Zentangle Teacher

Posted by on Jun 22, 2014 in Blog: Tangled Expressions, Tutorials | 5 comments

Tutorial: Shade with Niji Brush, Sakura Gelly Roll & Watercolor Pencils  by Sharla R. Hicks, Certified Zentangle Teacher

 

This week I am the guest blogger for the I Am Diva weekly challenge that will be posted Monday June 23, 2014.  I named my challenge Redux, Remix, Revisit Your Comfort Tangle.  CLICK HERE for the I Am the Diva Challenge details. BUT not before peeking at the two tutorials below that offer some shading ideas when you take up the Redux, Remix, Revisit challenge.  Enjoy your tangle week and I am looking forward to see your posted tiles.

This week I am challenging you try a new technique or two for shading, you will also be asked to change up your comfort zone by trying different paper or pen color.  I did not want to leave anyone in the lurch, so I pulled together a couple tutorials on alternate shading techniques you may find helpful when adding color shading to your Zentangles.

Shading with Sakura Gelly Roll Pens

Sakura Classic Gelly Roll Pen Blended Shading and Fill

Sakura Classic Gelly Roll Pen Blended Shading, Fill, and Line.

The one shading technique that surprises people the most is using Sakura’s Gelly Roll Pens as the pigment / paint for a watercolor shading technique.  Other brands of gel pens work too, but I love the quality and price point of the Sakura brand.  Did you know that Sakura invented Gel Pen technology and the rest are copycats which might explain why many of the knockoff no names have issues.  If you have been turned off by gel pen performance, give the Sakura brand a try for a positive experience.

Sakura has done a great job in selecting their color choices for each set. What amazes me about the Sakura line of Gelly Roll Pens, even though the palettes are limited, the colors seems to be so spot on and versatile, I hardly notice they have a limited pallet.  NOTE:  The pen cap color is not the best representation of the color of the pen.  Look at the body &  inside tube of color in the pen for a truer example of pen color.

Gelly Roll Pens by Sakura available at Soft Expressions.com
SoftExpressions.com has color chart examples of each pen color  that shows blended shading or fill.

Sakura Metallic Gelly Roll Pens

Sakura Metallic Gelly Roll Pens are an opaque pen that draws and write like butter.  Every time I pick one up to use, I fall in love again with the colors and creamy smooth glide across the paper.    The shading blend is smooth and a little glitzy with the metallic particals glimmering off when light

Moonlight Gelly Roll Pens by Sakura

Moonlight Gelly Roll Pens by Sakura are opaque and nothing sparks up a highlight like a set of bright moonlight gelly roll pens with the extra glow they have, some are even florescent.  The shade blend stays true to color and lights as it blends away from the original line. —– When I need a bumped up bright highlight, moonlight is are my go to pen.   I will be sharing some works in future posts that show how beautiful these pens are when used for highlights. They come in  medium and fine point.  We carry both at Soft Expressions.

Classic Gelly Roll Pens by Sakura

Classic Gelly Roll Pens by Sakura are rich in pigment and still transparent so when used as watercolor shading shown below. The rich color gives a deep blend next to the line and softens nicely as it blends away from the line.  See above example

Stardust Gelly Roll Pen by Sakura

Stardust Gelly Roll Pen by Sakura are top on my list with the extra and yet subtle glitz offered with these pens.  Each pen has a beautiful mica that highlights the color of the pen. The clear is extra special when used as a seal for graphite shading in Zentangle.  More on this future post.  This pen set is the ones used for Zentangled Inspired Letter below.  The glitz just adds that extra touch needed to please my granddaughters.

 

How to Watercolor Blend with Sakura Gelly Roll Pens by Sharla R. Hicks, Certified Zentangle Teacher

How to do a Watercolor Blend with Sakura Gelly Roll Pens by Sharla R. Hicks, Certified Zentangle Teacher

 Gelly Roll Pens by Sakura available at Soft Expressions.com

Shading with Watercolor Pencils

I also shade with watercolor pencils.  I use many brands but I am quite drawn to the Derwent Graphitints.  The pigment is grayed down with graphite and seems to fit my palette choices well. I like subtle shading that does not take away from the beauty found in the detailed patterns of Zentangle. Sometime very bright colors can distract your visual attention. I have also used Derwent’s Inktense and Watercolor Pencils & Prisma Watercolor Pencils.  The bottom line, what I am looking for when when buying watercolor and color pencils is a wide range of colors with deep colors, rich mid-tones and luscious pastels.  Confessions time.  I like to buy the large sets. 4-6 colors just will NOT do. Each pencil set and brand seems to have a slightly different color set even though many have the same color name like sepia or scarlet red.  So I need them all, right! Well at least it makes sense to me, my husband not so much.

I carry the Derwent Inktense & Watercolor pencils at SoftExpressions.com

SharlaRella 5 is shaded with Graphitint Watercolor pencils using similar technique as above, except this time I drew a watercolor pencil line directly on the tile and then used the Niji Waterbrush to shade the color.

SharlaRella 5 is shaded with Graphitint Watercolor pencils using water color shading technique in the tutorial.

Watercolor Pencil Shading Tutorial by Sharla R. Hicks, Certified Zentangle Teacher

Watercolor Pencil Shading Tutorial by Sharla R. Hicks, Certified Zentangle Teacher

 

If you are participating in my I am the Diva Challenge,
to return to the Challenge instructions, CLICK HERE


NOTE: If you are looking for Sakura Gelly Rolls Pens, Niji Waterbrush, Zentangle Tiles, and Derwent Inktense & Watercolor pencils
check out Sharla’s store: SoftExpressions.com for the full line.


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Creativity from the Heart presentation,  Zentangle workshops or attending Zentangle classes
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at Soft Expressions, Anaheim California, CLICK HERE.


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5 Comments

  1. Very informative tutorial, Sharla! Thank you so much.

  2. Terrific tutorial and wonderful new ways to shade! Thanks.

  3. Thanks for your tip about the Derwent Graphitints pencils being grayed colors. Love how they accent the linework without overwhelming it.

  4. i just found your wonderful blog. Your work is sensational! I have a question about this shading process. What kind of paper are you working on? Can these techniques be done on official Zentangle tiles or would I need watercolor paper?

    • Missed replying to this earlier. Thank you for your kind remarks regarding my work. With the Niji brush, you can shade very nicely on Zentangle tiles. The tiles are very friendly paper for pencil shading also. Watercolor paper can also be used also as Niji is a wet medium choice. I also use bristol velumn (100 lb.) and printmaking paper (140 lb.) Cardstock is my least favorite as the paper usually grabs the pencil or wet media quickly and shading becomes more difficult.

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