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Learn to draw with colored pencils - Page 3

Drawing a color gradient between two colors

The gradient from blacks into a color works the same way as the black-white gradient with a white crayon. Basically you can draw a colored area first and draw over ist with black (or some other dark color) in a second step. Personally, I'm always starting with the darkes color to draw a gradient and then I'm drawing the brighter color draw over it. My experience is that the gradient gets better by this method. If the gradient I still not like I want it to be, I draw over it again with the crayons.

drawing a gradient
color gradient from black to blue

Gradients of two different colors can be drawn after the same principle. But if you draw e.g. a gradient from blue to yellow, of course you have an area in the middle of the green (see figure below):

drawing a gradient
Color gradient from blue to yellow with green middle section


drawing a gradient
1. Blue color drawn with a gradient; 2. Green color drawn on the blue gradient

Mixing colors

Because you are not necessarily calling a large pencil box your own, you will now and then be in the situation to have to mix a certain color with your colored pencils by your own. But even if you own all the available color hues, it is sometimes necessary to mix colors. The technique of mixing certain hues, is basically the same as drawing color gradients. In the following, I will describe some typical situations in which you have to mix colors.

a) Light / Dark

To draw a brighter hue, you have to fill the desired area first with the (darker) color, that comes closest to the desired hue. But the area must only be hatched in the first step. That means you should not apply the color to strong (so don't put to much preasure on the pencil). To refine it you can revise the area with an eraser pen. When you reach the desired hue, you draw over it with a white crayon - now you must firmly imprint. Thus the color gets furhter mixed, drowns deeper into the pores of the paper and the area gets sealed.

The picture below illustrates the differences. To the left you can seen the hue 152 Phthaloblue Dark (Polychromos). The area besides the same hue was used, but only hatched. The third box from the left shows the hatched hue 152, revised with a white pencil. Here the paper structure is no longer recognizable. The box to the far right shwos the hue 45 Phthaloblue Bright (Polychromos) drawn firmly on the paper drawn.

You can realize that even the mixed hue looks almost the same to the hue far right. If you try hard drawing the hue, you will receive even better results.Man erkennt, dass der selbst gemischt Farbton dem Farbton ganz rechts schon sehr nahe kommt. Wenn man sich beim Zeichnen mehr Mühe gibt wird’s noch besser.

drawing with coloured pencil
Mixing a coloring to a brighter hue

If you want to draw a darker color with the colored pencils, it will be better to hatch the area first with the black tone and then apply the color.

b) Generating an other hue

Another hue is generated with the colored pencils by mixing two different colors. Mixing colors means that two or more colors are drawn above the other. You should always draw the darker color first and the brighter color above it. The figure below shows two colors (red and yellow) mixed to orange.


drawing with coloured pencil
The colors red and yellow drawn one above the other


drawing with coloured pencil
1. The color red drawn light in advance;
2. The color yellow drawn strongly over red to receive an orange hue

These were the basics to learn drawing with colored pencils. On the following pages you will find a step-by-step instructions for drawing a cube. There you can try out the lesson you have learned right now ;-) .

-> Continue with Page 4

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