Ciao Copic Markers

A color either sings or falls silent depending on the colors it keeps company with. Scroll back and forth between the two variations of the images posted below.

Trumpet Parts Number 17, red border

The red border causes the mustard-colored background to look ghastly.

Trumpet Parts Number 17, blue border

Unable to paint fresh color over the red border, I cut and pasted on my computer to see what a bright blue might do.  I felt that the mustard background had potential that just wasn’t being nurtured by its neighbors.  Overall, the colors are a bit strange.  Experiments are worthwhile when taken far enough.  Learning my dislikes are as valuable as learning color combinations I like.  Neutrals can be tricky.  I was out of my comfort zone on this one.  I added gouache to correct the background value.  I had used a W5 Ciao Copic marker rather than a W3 making the value too dark. The shadow shapes were lost.  I ended up with the strange mustard background that I brightened a bit with more yellow.

Sketchbook painting:  Part of the 100 drawing/painting Trumpet Parts Series.  Drawn first with fountain pen filled with mix of red and black Noodler’s ink, followed by watercolor, Ciao Copic Markers and gouache.

Back to my trumpet part series of 100 drawings and paintings.  Only Eighty Four more to go.

Trumpet Parts, #16, ink & copic marker

Yesterday I saw Derick Melander’s The Painful Spectacle of Finding Oneself, three tall stacks of folded fabrics.  One of the stacks is a pile of various red and black fabrics.  I was reminded of how wonderfully reds and blacks play against each other. I decided to use two fountain pens this morning, one with black ink, one with a mixture of red and black inks.  I used my water brush to bleed the red/black ink into the forms of the trumpet parts.  Warm grays were added using Ciao Copic Markers.  The red is terribly subtle, yet it adds considerably to the otherwise monochromatic drawing.

The small inset drawing was completed prior to drawing the trumpet parts in the larger box.  Normally I complete the entire page of line drawing prior to adding values.  Altering my method every now and then contributes to new directions and possibilities.

This evening’s flat, overcast light conditions inspired me to be inventive with greens while maintaining similar values. The play between positive and negative shapes caught my attention.  I wanted to create spacial layering without calling attention to the shape of individual leaves.

Hollyhocks with warm and cool green leaves

I began with a contour drawing using two fountain pens, one filled with Noodler’s Midnight Blue ink and the other with Noodler’s Green Marine ink. Using a pen brush filled with only water, I brushed the leaves to cause only a slight bleed of the ink.  I left it at that for about fifteen minutes until I found I needed a bit more substance to the drawing.  First I applied values with Ciao Copic Markers.  Still I needed more.  I wanted a limited range of colors to reflect the flat lighting.  Out came the watercolors.  Using a limited palette of peacock blue, lemon yellow and aurolean yellow I mixed the greens ranging from warm to cool, maintaining similar values and not crossing the boundaries of green (not extending into yellows or blues). Movement between shapes is created by the temperature change of the colors more than the value change, allowing the emphasis to remain on the interactions between the positive and negative shapes.

Knowing how ink reacts to the application of water or watercolor pigment helps me to understand the limits and potential of my tools of expression.

Ink Test Number 4

I gathered all of my inks and tested them to see which I could depend on not to bleed when I applied water or watercolor washes.  Each ink is tested as follows:

1. line stroke with dip pen

2. line stroke with dip pen followed immediately by a stroke of clean water applied with a brush

3. line strokes with dip pen allowed to dry overnight.  Watercolor washes applied the next morning to see the degree of  ink bleed.

4. Brush stroke of undiluted ink

5. line strokes with dip pen allowed to dry overnight.  Ciao copic marker applied the next morning to see the degree of ink bleed.

Ink Test Number 5

Ink Test Number 2

Ink Test Numbe 3

Ink Test Number 1

I have never been a fan of blue ink.  However, I recently signed up to receive samples of Noodler’s ink monthly from The Goulet Pen Company.  Yesterday I received samples of four blue inks.  I decided to fill one of my clear demonstrator Noodler Flex Fountain Pens with the Midnight Bleu (fast dry) to take with me on my Thursday “Walk with my Dad”.  I brought along Ciao Copic Marker to overlay values without too much bleed.  I was pleased with the results.  View the Feltville drawings on my Third Time Around blog.

After a few attempts at value studies with my new Ciao Copic Markers I realized I needed to make value charts and identify my markers by value according to my five step and seven step value scales.

Five and Seven Step Value Scale Analysis of Markers

I have only a small selection of markers, mostly warm and cool grays.  I evaluated the value of each marker considering both a single stroke and a double stroke of each marker.

Comparing marker values to value charts

Note that my value scales run off the edge of the page.  My marker strips also run off the edge of the strip so that I can more easily compare the values.

Plotting the values

After deciding where the value of each marker, for both one stroke and double stroke, I complete my five step and seven step value charts for easy reference.  It is difficult to use the markers effectively when I try to judge the value by the caps on the markers.

Two landscape value studies

Simple value scale landscape sketches are much easier using my reference charts.