HOW TO BLEND COLORED PENCILS TUTORIAL
Watch the drawing video of Jasmine from Aladdin, in which I apply all my tecniques!
In this tutorial I share with you Ten Tips about how to blend colored pencils in your drawings! I decided to make this tutorial because many of you always ask me information about my tecnique. In the video below I show you my method, a technique that comes from my experience! I hope you will find my suggestions useful!
When we speak about blending colored pencils is very important to take in consideration which pencils we decide to use. Better the quality of the pencils better is the result. Softer and pigmented pencils are the best option for this purpose. I suggest you to use very soft pencil lead for blending and harder leads for edges and borders. There is no need to spend a lot of money for your colored pencils, the important thing is to find a compromise between quality and price.
How to blend colored pencils?
1 ANALYZE THE ORIGINAL PICTURE
Before to start you should analyze the original picture paying attention to every single shade. For one second forget about the general overview and focus on the details. While you are drawing it may seem a mess but at the end, when you look at the general result, you will see that each piece fits well into the overall picture.
2 TRY COLORS
If you don’t know which colored pencils you must use and which one has the right shade, just try the pencils on a white paper and then compare the two tonalities. Using this tip you will be shure that you are using the right shade and that you are not making mistakes.
3 START WITH LESS
If you are still practising, remember to start with less color and then add more until you will reach a good result. With some practice you will understand the right pressure.
4 FILL THE EMPTY SPACES
If you want to create shadows and lights, the main mistake is to use only one tonality and make more pressure for the shadow and less pressure for the light. That is ok but you can’t leave the drawing like that. You must compleate it, filling all the empty spaces, otherwise the result will look like unprofessional. I suggest you to use a clearer tonality or the white pencil to complete the light effect.
5 SMALL CIRCLES OR DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS
My advice is to use the colored pencils drawing small circles and not lines. In that way it will be easier to blend colors. The circles will distribute the color in all the directions and this tecnique will create an harmonious result. If you are not used to draw cyrcles and you find it difficult, stick with the lines but at one condition: you have to add more layers in different directions. So if you make lines from the top to the bottom, you need to add another layer from left to right.
You should think at the drawing like a series of layers, light papers that overlap creating the final drawing. For those who use Photoshop it will be easier to understand what I mean.
7 SHADOWS AND LIGHTS
The layers are like transparent papers. On the bottom there are the shadows then the middle tones and the clearest tonality on top. At the end it will be possible to add some details. To blend the colors you have to make more pressure where the tonality is stronger and less pressure at the border between the two tones. That is the point in which they meet and mix togheter.
8 ADD MORE
If the result is not as you wish, you can still add more layers to the drawing. This is possible only if you have followed my suggestions. That is because If you have already made too much pressure with the colored pencils on the paper, it will be not so easy to add more layers. For this reason is also to consider the quality of the paper you are using.
The papers with less quality don’t allow many layers of color. After a while they become less resistent and at that point it is better to avoid to add more layers of color and ruin the paper. This is very important when we want to create more complicated drawings that need more layers of color to achieve a result close to the original.
9 TIP: BLENDER
I do not use the blender because I prefer to blend colored pencils using only the colored pencils as described so far. Anyway, if you wish, you can use the blender, that is a colorless pencil used to mix colors. Just notice that if you use the blender, it will be impossible to add more layers of color or you will ruin the drawing. Therefore, if you know you are going to use the blender, make shure you are satisfied with the final result.
If you are happy with the result, you can now add some details like small lights, wrinkles, backlit hair, skin or fabric texture, like I did in this drawing of Captain America. It would be better to use an harder pencil but you can keep using the soft one that has to be very sharp.