I have always been interested in using watercolour pencils and recently I was on a Fred Olsen cruise to Spain and Portugal where one of the ‘at sea’ activities was watercolour painting which I naturally took part in. Although I had taken a small kit along with my pan set I found I was using watercolour pencils because of the fairly cramped area in which to work. In any case I much prefer tubes to pans as I have said before (WTPD005 Wishy washy watercolours)but my tube case was too big and heavy.
My 'on board' kit
I have several sets of pencils, Inktense, Graphitint, watercolour and Aquatone but I mainly used my 24 set of Inktense. Talking to Clare about it and as my birthday was approaching she decided to get me a full 72 set of Inktense!
My new 72 pencil kit
pencils are quite strong and give clear colours, but
the other types of watercolour pencil once they are wetted out the
colour is fixed and cannot be easily lifted out or modified. They
can, of course, be layered and the colours can be mixed either dry or
after wetting and drying. Here are
some of the paintings I did with pencils while on the cruise.
San Francisco Plaza Cadiz
Bridge at Ronda
The big advantage of watercolour pencils is their compactness when painting outdoors or in confined spaces. I use the water reservoir brushes to blend the colours into place but it is important to wipe them off with tissue between colours to prevent unwanted colour mixing. In the next part I will be demonstrating how to use them.