Mini Art Tutorial: Ink with Golden Lines

HOW IT’S MADE: AS SEEN ON @MESSYEVERAFTER’S INSTAGRAM

As you know, I’m obsessed with line work and I am always trying to find the perfect tools for crisp lines. For this piece, I tested out a new gold ink that I have fallen in love with. It’s incredibly versatile and can be applied with a brush or a pen. You can buy single colors, or sets. I’d recommend a set as it’s a much better value.

MATERIALS AND SUPPLIES I USE:

*Links contained in this post are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you make a purchase within 24 hours of clicking. These are products I use regularly and absolutely love.

General Directions:

THE BACKGROUND:

  1. Cut your watercolor paper to your desired size. For this piece, I cut down to 3″x3″. You can tape your paper down with masking tape to prevent warping, but I find this small size doesn’t warp much at all.
  2. Use a protractor or any cylindrical object and draw a light circle in the middle of your paper with a pencil.
  3. Deposit a small amount of each ink color onto your palette. Using your smaller brush, mix the deeper plum/purple shade first. Use a bit of violet and lake blue, and magenta. Mix together on your palette. You’ll want a bit more magenta to push the hue to the plum side.
  4. Using your bigger watercolor brush, lightly wet the entire circle with clean water.
  5. Work the ink into the bottom of your circle with your small brush. Then mix a new hue that is heavier on the violet and work into the bottom layer up into the middle of the circle.
  6. Clean your brush.
  7. Work lake blue into the upper section of the circle. Blend all of the layers together. Clean your brush when working from dark to light.
  8. Dab areas of the circle with a paper towel if you want to lift the ink for lighter areas.
  9. Let dry.

THE LINE WORK AND STARS:

  1. Use any of the pen tips in the Speedball set. I like the softer/pliable tips.
  2. Using a pipette or watercolor brush, put a little clean water onto the Arabic Gold pan. Use a harder bristled synthetic brush and rub the water into the surface until it starts to soften and liquify. You want to stir in water until the gold is like a thin paint or thick ink.
  3. Use the brush to deposit some of the ink onto your Speedball pen tip. Then, test out your ink and pen on a scratch piece of paper to get used to the feel. If the ink doesn’t transfer to the paper, try thinning it with more water, or deposit more onto the pen.
  4. Once you feel somewhat confident in your control of the pen, grab your completely dry paper. Starting from the base of the ink work, create geometric lines. You can use a ruler if you’re more comfortable with that, but you’ll have to wait for each line to dry completely before moving the ruler. I find it’s easier to free hand, but it can take some practice to get to that point.
  5. Once finished with the lines, add stars with your pen or a fine tipped brush.
  6. If your pencil outline is visible, use your eraser and clean up the edges once the gold ink is dry.
  7. And voila! It’s finished!

***

If you enjoyed this little tutorial and want to learn more, let me know through Instagram or Email, or consider becoming a Patron of mine (See details below!) Now go get messy and share your creation on Instagram using #messyeverafter!

-Kelly

SUPPORT MESSY EVER AFTER ON PATREON:

A lot of artists don’t like to share their secrets, but I’m an open book. If you enjoy the content I create and the advice I give to other creators, please consider becoming Patron of mine on Patreon. Pledging as little as $1 a month supports this content and my career as an artist.

Further Reading:

Mini Art Tutorial: Ink Oceanscape

HOW IT’S MADE: AS SEEN ON @MESSYEVERAFTER’S INSTAGRAM

I don’t exactly do art tutorials, but I am trying a loose approach to it and sharing a few tips plus the supplies I use. So check out how I made this inky ocean piece below!

MATERIALS AND SUPPLIES I USE:

*Links contained in this post are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you make a purchase within 24 hours of clicking. These are products I use regularly and absolutely love.

General Directions:

Your end result may not look exactly like mine, but this will give you an idea of my process.

The Background:

  1. Cut your watercolor paper to your desired size. For this piece, I cut down to 8″x10″. You can tape your paper down with masking tape to prevent warping, but if you use the Canson Heritage Hot Press, it doesn’t warp or buckle as easily as other papers. (You can also pre-stretch your paper if you have the time. I am too lazy for that.)
  2. I used a wet-on-wet method. Using your watercolor brush, lightly wet the entire area of the paper you want your ink to go.
  3. Starting with the yellow, dip your brush in and the touch the top of your wetted area. Work your way across the paper. Add more ink as you go depending on how vibrant you want the ink to be. Clean your brush and pull your ink from the center to the edges if you want more of a gradient.
  4. Then dip into the orange ink and touch the center of the wetted area. Blend the orange up into the yellow.
  5. Dip into the red, and then touch the bottom of the wetted area and slowly work the rest of the area, blending into the orange.
  6. Go over any areas you wish to be darker. Clean your brush in between colors.
  7. If you want a more feathered and light look around the edges, clean your brush and load with clean water, then touch the dry areas of the paper around the edges of the ink. The ink will then bleed into the clear water and create a more subtle edge.
  8. Let dry.

The Line Work and Stars:

  1. Use any of the pen tips in the Speedball set. First, test out your ink and pen on a scratch piece of paper to get used to the feel. You don’t want to get too much ink on the pen otherwise you’ll create blobby messes. So practice with this for a bit. I usually don’t dip the pen in the bottle, but use the dropper top and manually apply ink to the pen tip.
  2. Once you feel somewhat confident in your control of the pen, grab your completely dry paper. Starting from the base of the ink work, create long flowing lines. Work your way up.
  3. Allow each area to dry before trying to go over it a second time.
  4. Once finished with the lines, add stars with your pen.
  5. If some areas don’t look as solid white as others, using a small brush and dip it in the white ink and touch up the less opaque sections.

***

And that’s all! If you enjoyed this little tutorial and want to learn more, let me know through Instagram or Email, or consider becoming a Patron of mine (See details below!) Now go get messy and share your creation on Instagram using #messyeverafter!

-Kelly

SUPPORT MESSY EVER AFTER ON PATREON:

A lot of artists don’t like to share their secrets, but I’m an open book. If you enjoy the content I create and the advice I give to other creators, please consider becoming Patron of mine on Patreon. Pledging as little as $1 a month supports this content and my career as an artist.

Further Reading: