Inktensely Enjoyable Day

I had myself an art day today! A very satisfying experience for my inner child/artist, and a chance to finally try out some of those fabulous art supplies that I constantly buy… (the addiction can’t be resistent even though chances for creating seem far and few in-between…). 

This first warm-up round is mainly testing out Derwent Inktense Blocks. There’s a pastel background layer under the yellow and green, and the tree was also sketched in first with an indigo pastel pencil, and then covered with dark green watercolour. For no other reason than that I like to play…and that pastel pencils on very textured watercolour paper aren’t ideal, so the added watercolour smoothens out the results. And I do enjoy the green twigs and branches.

I loved working with the Inktense blocks – really easy to use, beautiful, intense colours (the pastels weren’t needed for the intensity). Colour can be taken with a brush from the blocks directly, or applied to the paper first and then given a wash. Easy to add more layers too since the ink doesn’t budge once it has dried.

There’s a good demonstration of working with Inktense blocks here – by someone who knows way more of artistic technique than I do.


While some layers of the first creation were drying, I started on then next one, and again, I ended up using quite a mix of materials: pencil for the initial drawing, Inktense blocks (for the letters and background) and coloured pencil (for the tree only), and graphite and watercolour to emphasise various lines.


These first two paintings are done on postcard-sized paper. The one below is between A4 and A3, and it’s not watercolour paper. Again, I was working with the Inktense blocks, testing out what they can do, in combination with a similar experiment on my new fan brush (that’s the only brush I used on the painting below).

For the background, I ran the blocks lengthwise over the paper and worked over that with water (and the fan brush…); I added more patterns with the blocks on the then wet paper – which changes their effect, and I enjoyed exploring the differences. Once this first layer had dried, I pondered what I could do with the foreground and decided to experiment more with the fan brush, adding the grass and trees using different aspects/movements of the brush, both times taking colour directly from the Inktense blocks with less water.


I’m sure someone with more artistic experience could do quite a bit more with these materials – but I had a good time, enjoyed the work and the results – and the company of other painters around me! Lovely way to spend a day…

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2 Responses to Inktensely Enjoyable Day

  1. debiriley says:

    fantastic 🙂 and “PLAY” is vastly Underrated and under employed – good for you !! sometimes, we all just need to have a good time, enjoying the process, and fiddle de dee with worrying about getting a good enough Product.

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