Do you want to give personality to your next drawings? coloring techniques will help you! No matter how old you are, coloring is an activity that de-stresses and stimulates creativity, that’s why experts recommend doing it frequently .
Although we all started coloring when we were children, the drawings we made back then, although we remember them with nostalgia, didn’t have the best finish, don’t you think? So, in order not to disappoint our inner artist, it’s time to learn how to color like a pro!
If you don’t know where to start, or where to find the best coloring techniques, this note will be your great ally! Don’t worry if even the mandalas you are painting don’t turn out as expected, we created this article as a guide for you to learn the coloring techniques you need to bring your drawings to life.
In the following lines, we will review coloring techniques for coloring with colored pencils and, for those who are more advanced and want to learn other ways, we will also describe how to color with markers and watercolors. After reading this article, your drawings will look amazing!
are you ready? let’s fill this article with color!
Basic coloring techniques
We start this coloring techniques guide with the basics of learning how to color drawings. These coloring techniques will support you in composing your next works and, best of all, they are not new to you. On the contrary, you will surely remember them from when you were just learning how to color in school.
So, before we get to know the most advanced coloring techniques, how about going back to your beginnings in art?
1. Line drawing technique
The first of our coloring techniques consists of drawing some lines on top of others, these take the name of wefts. If you want to create more intensity in the tone of any part of your drawing, all you have to do is draw more lines in that part .
2. Pointillism technique
Pointillism is a technique for painting based on dots. Like the scratch technique in art, the areas with more intensity contain more dots and the lighter areas have fewer dots, allowing the artist to create depth and texture in his work.
One of the main characteristics of pointillism is that, if appreciated closely, the work appears to be almost abstract; however, by taking some distance, you can appreciate how this coloring technique manages to regain form and becomes a true work of art.
3. Tonal or gradient technique
This is one of the most popular coloring techniques, which involves working from the lowest intensity color to the highest intensity tone. In other words, we could consider this procedure as a gradient coloring.
If you want to use this technique to paint drawings to create different effects in your next creations, the Staedtler coloring brand, tells us the following: “you can play with gradients that, within the same color, go from light to dark. In this way, it will be possible to obtain a three-dimensional effect of light and shadow.” Let’s experiment!
4. Bleaching technique
This way of coloring is used to flatten the colors, that is to say, to lower their intensity. But what should you do to apply this technique that allows you to take a color from a dark tone to a light tone on paper?
Simply, you must pass a white pencil over the paper or drawing, and then add the rest of the colors; the result will be a more uniform texture throughout your creation. In this way, you will avoid having areas that look more worked than others or areas that, on the contrary, lack color.
5. Circulism shading technique
Surely this is one of the coloring techniques you used the most when you were in school. to carry out this technique to apply color, you must fill the drawing by making donuts or circles of the same size. Try to make sure that all the circles are uniform, so as to avoid empty spaces or unwanted intensity.
The Staedtler coloring brand explains that “depending on the pressure with which this coloring technique is applied, beautiful and smooth steps from light to dark are obtained”. Therefore, you must be clear about the effect you want to capture on paper before starting to draw. This way, you will be able to correctly determine the process to follow.
Techniques for coloring with wooden crayons
Continuing with our guide on coloring techniques, after having reviewed the most basic ways of coloring, it is now time to focus on the techniques to apply color that will provide us with a little more detail.
In this section, we will delve into other ways to learn how to paint better with colored pencils. Although they are more advanced techniques, they are still very easy to do and will allow you to add style to your drawings in a unique way .
Pay close attention to the colored pencil techniques we will mention below, because, we are sure that after reading this article, you will want to put at least one of these coloring techniques into practice. Seriously, they are spectacular!
1. Grattage Technique
To apply the first of the colored pencil techniques, you’ll need to start with the tonal way of coloring. Then, you’ll need to add a dark base and start scraping the color with a lancet, which is a surgical instrument for making small incisions .
2. Tinting technique
The matting technique is compared to watercolor coloring techniques, because, after painting your drawing, you apply alcohol or baby oil with a cotton swab on the line to give movement to your composition and make it look like a real watercolor painting.
To achieve a perfect finish, the trick is not to have too much oil on the swab or cotton swab and to carry out this process delicately. This way, you will be able to observe how the paint evolves and you will be able to give it the effect you want.
Although it will demand a little more time, you will see that it is worth waiting to see the result of this technique to paint with pencil.
3. Erasing technique
The third of the coloring techniques in this section is a painting method used to brighten up your drawings. If you want to apply it to your next artwork, you just need to pass the eraser in a shaded area and create light areas in your compositions.
Although it sounds simple, the result will surprise you! do you dare to try this coloring technique with any of the different types of drawings that exist?
4. Rubbing technique
Although it is usually recommended to work on a flat space to avoid painting textures by accident, in this case, we will use surfaces that are not flat to apply this coloring technique.
To carry out this technique to learn how to paint drawings, you can use any kind of element: a cup holder, a lace fabric, the cover of a book or a notebook; here creativity plays a lot.
So, to begin, once you have chosen the texture, place the sheet of paper on it, pass the colored pencil so that the texture is printed and start applying this coloring technique immediately. let your imagination run wild!
5. Burnishing technique
looking for coloring techniques that allow you to brighten up your drawings? this may be the ideal one for you! What you need to do to apply it is to take a rag, although you can also do it with your finger, and rub it over the painted drawing .
The special papers company Michel.es explains that the result of this coloring technique works because “rubbing flattens the fibers of the paper, which highlights the colors and sinks the pigment particles. Sounds interesting, don’t you think?
6. Multicolor technique
Drawings have more life when you play with different ranges of colors or with shades of the rainbow that are distant from each other. In that sense, Staedtler recommends making the following combinations to highlight our drawings: dark green with pink and orange with brown and green.
They also explain that we should not include the color gray in our coloring technique, since it is not a vivid color, unless we combine it with strong colors such as red or yellow.
Techniques for coloring with watercolor pencils
Watercolor pencils are colored pencils that, when mixed with water, give the sensation of being in front of a watercolor painting. Below, we will show you how to achieve the techniques for coloring with watercolor pencils; a process faster and easier than you can imagine.
Totenart Tutorials, a platform specialized in art and painting, explains that watercolor colors allow us to achieve both dry and wet results, i.e., once the illustration is done with the colored pencil, we can stop at this stage so that our work remains dry.
However, if we want to obtain the traditional watercolor result, we only need to wet our drawing with the help of a brush and a little water. what do you think about this coloring technique?
In case this is your first time with this type of colors, we share with you the techniques recommended by Faber Castell to start coloring with Albrecht Dürer watercolor pencils:
Hold the pencil vertically, pressing firmly on the paper.
Go from light to dark when coloring.
The watercolor effect is achieved by wetting a brush and wiping it over the colored area.
Experts advise to keep in mind that “light colors have an almost transparent effect, while dark colors provide coverage. Overlapping layers of color increases the brightness and intensity of the colors”.
Also, for a more professional effect, they suggest the following coloring tips. Take note!
Take a brush and spray the transitions of the drawing to give it a more blurred or dissolved effect.
Moisten the paper on which you will pass the watercolor pencils, this way, the pencils release more pigment.
Pass one color over another, creating layers, to give depth of field to the drawing.
So, now that you have the best tips from the experts, are you encouraged to try this coloring technique?
Techniques for coloring with markers
Finally, we could not miss in our guide to coloring techniques, the techniques for coloring with markers. if we take into consideration that markers are colored pencils with liquid ink, we must be more alert during the coloring process, as they can become more complex to handle.
For example, resting them on the wrong part of the drawing could stain the whole work; however, there is no need to panic. Below, we describe 5 techniques so that you can start painting with markers without suffering in the attempt .
1. Flat color technique
The first of the techniques for coloring with markers is the most basic of all. This consists of filling in the spaces with the marker, passing it over the surface. You must bear in mind that, in order to achieve a uniform result, this procedure must be quick.
Otherwise, the ink will dry and you will notice lines all over your drawing. To avoid this, and if you need to pass the marker several times, you should do it while you notice that the ink is still fresh.
2. Scratching technique
The second of the techniques for coloring with markers aims to make several color variations. In other words, it will allow you to experiment with the effects that markers can generate in your work .
The experts at Totenart Tutorials recommend using new and worn markers to experiment with the depth and directionality of the shades. So, if you were about to throw away your markers, try this coloring technique first!
3. Masking technique
If you don’t want the edge of your drawing to be too defined, this technique for applying color with markers will save you. Basically, it consists of applying masking tape on the areas of the drawing that you don’t want to stain .
This way, you will avoid ink accumulations and the drawing you are making will look impeccable. This technique is the most recommended for coloring with large markers.
4. Line drawing technique
this is one of the coloring techniques that can be a challenge for more than one! Line drawing consists of painting your drawing with a single movement, that is, without removing the marker from the surface .
With the same line that you started this technique to apply color on your drawing, you must define the contours and color the spaces of your entire work.
5. Fusion effect technique
Of all the techniques for coloring with markers that we have mentioned, this is the only one that is advisable to carry out with professional markers. This is because this type of markers offers different blending effects.
To achieve this result, you will have to apply alcohol or water on them, as if they were watercolors. Keep in mind that, the ways to paint a drawing and achieve the blending effect may vary depending on the brand of markers you choose. A highly recommended option are Copic markers, which already include alcohol in the ink.
how to color like a pro?
We could not end this note on coloring techniques without a section of tips so you can learn how to color correctly. So, if you want to discover how to color a drawing like a pro, it’s important to start with the basics: learning the tricks and methods of coloring to enhance your drawings.
Consider the following coloring tips before you start creating your next work of art:
1. Buy quality colored pencils
One of the aspects that influence the outcome of your coloring is the quality of the colored pencils you choose to color with. We recommend investing in the best colored pencils you can find, as they will be your creative companions for a long time to come.
2. Sharpen the tip of your colored pencils very well
This will allow you to focus on details and improve your coloring methods, as it allows the color pigment to be distributed throughout your drawing as you paint. An important recommendation is to use a manual pencil sharpener .
According to blogger Mavi Pastor, artist and writer, with this type of pencil sharpener “you waste less pigment and it makes your pencil last longer”.therefore, with this coloring tip, in addition to achieving a more professional effect in your works, you will be able to save some money and not have to invest frequently in colored pencils.
3. Choose the right paper or surface
If you are creating a drawing from scratch, look for a paper that allows you to show the attributes and colors of your creation, preferably use a white sheet of paper. And, so that your coloring technique comes out as you learned it, place the paper on a smooth surface so that no texture affects the stroke.
4. Create a manual of color combinations
Before you start coloring a drawing, we recommend you to experiment beforehand with the color combinations you can create. This way, you will know which shades you should put together to obtain the style you want to recreate.
By finding the right combinations, the coloring techniques will have a better effect, because the shades will be selected to enhance the effect of the work.
congratulations, you have reached the end of the article and now you know which coloring techniques will make you an expert, choose the one you like the most and don’t forget to follow our final tips, we are sure you will be able to show your potential through your next creations!