20 February 2015

more ink monotone studies

I've been doing a few more sketches testing various ink colors with monotone washes, some water-soluble and some waterproof with a matching watercolor.

I retried the De Atramentis brown, this time with a burnt sienna & ultramarine watercolor mix. This is much closer to the ink's color than the burnt umber I tried previously. I thought the previous deer sketch looked a bit dull; now I've decided that it wasn't the color of paint, it was the extra niggly sketch lines. For this drawing technique, I think it looks "fresher" with limited ink lines, using the wash for depth instead.


  1. I know I probably should know, but what are you mixing to duplicate the De Atramentis?

  2. I'm not duplicating the ink itself, I'm matching watercolors of near color to make up the washes since the ink is waterproof. The cowboy is the only De Atramentis ink here --- in a previous post I tried using burnt umber watercolor but it seemed a bit dull. So with the cowboy I mixed burnt sienna with just a small bit of ultramarine --- much closer to the brown ink color!
    BTW, I decided that the earlier deer sketch looked dull more due to too much niggly sketch lines. This monotone ink & wash seems to work better with a minimum of lines, allowing the wash to provide the form.
    The other inks on this spread are from Noodler's. The purple and red are both water-soluble so the washes are the ink itself. The napkin holder is drawn with my own mix of polar brown and polar black (both water-resistant) with a sepia watercolor wash.


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