PEP tangles - my Zentangle Inspired Art blog

Sunday, 12 June 2011

MCC Colouring 101 Wk 5 - Alcohol Markers

As I mentioned in my previous post the final week of MCC Colouring 101 comprised an overview of alcohol markers, more specifically Copic Markers, their numbering system & blending techniques.

I found this suprisingly challenging & after the best part of almost two days trying to get a blend I considered sufficiently smooth (maybe I'm trying to do something I'm not supposed to?) I was contemplating this bin

I decided to press on regardless & did some serious thinking whilst I continued the exercises during the course of which my Copic Ciao Blender ran out & I switched to using my ProMarker one.

a smooth (?) gradient & fading to white
creating a shadow
despite using cardstock specifically designed for use with alcohol markers you can see that I had bleeding

feathering using the colourless blender to create smoke
Digital Image: Glenda Waterworth

creating water on glossy cardstock & sky with Distress Ink

Digital Image: Glenda Waterworth

Stamp: Chocolate Baroque UA5SP0333 Christmas Angel of Light
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black

So, I have come to the conclusion that Copics MAY not be for me. For the moment I am reserving judgement, but I am not buying any more because:
  1. I find  the results unsubtle & very "in your face" with a lot of effort required to create something approaching a reasonable blend. 
  2. The constant capping & uncapping is cumbersome & though I tried leaving them uncapped whilst blending this resulted in the ink becoming sticky & thwarting my efforts. My very small hands may account for this - but they will be small no matter how much I practise with technique.
  3. I personally am unable to control the brush tip adequately hence there is real difficulty in applying the ink within the boundaries of a stamped image.
On a positive note I now know that any problems using the Copics are:
  • NOT due to the wrong cardstock - I've lost count of the number of recommended ones that I've tried.
  • NOT due to a lack of understanding the Copics numbering system - Glenda's explanation was enlightening.
  • NOT due to having an insufficient range of colours - with various offers etc..... over a period of time I have collected just over 170 or so.
I shall re-take Glenda's course & complete Suzanne's first set of classes before making any decision. Also, thanks to winning Debbi's candy a few months ago I have sufficient ProMarkers to give them a thorough testing. These have a rigid bullet tip & are much chunkier to hold plus (from my limited experience of them) seem much more subtle in their colours.

It is now a silly time of the morning & I need some more sleep before I do my Sunday bookselling duty in the local secondhand bookshop. I have a MacBook training session to prepare for on Wednesday & I am suffering from Card Challenge Withdrawal symptoms.


weewiccababe said...

that's very interesting about the copics Paula, I personally feel the copic ink is a lot grainier than the promarker ink when laid down on appropriate paper.

Debgem said...

Paula - thank you so much for sharing your thoughts about this course, and for sharing your drawing/colouring notebook. I think I'm definitely signing up for the next presentation in July - I've got so much to learn. I've not tried Copics, but I really enjoy using my Promarkers. There can be some bleeding, but on the whole I'm beginning to get the hang of it all.

Your colouring technique is really fabulous - I love the candlestick!

And I'm so glad that I wasn't the only one up into the small hours this morning :) Take care.

Annie said...

well you know how I love my Copics, Paula! I agree with you that the PMs seem richer in pigment and certainly cover quicker - but I do love to keep going over and over with my Copics and find them easier to blend, especially with contrasting colours. Try just playing with the pale shades and go by the colours you have filled in on your colour chart (hopefully you have that done)rather than by number. Remember, rules are there to be bent, and occasionally broken!
hugs, annie x

Elaine said...

As I have said before Paula, I have really enjoyed watching you go through the course and learn all these different colouring skills. Your colouring has really taken on another dimension and I hope you've enjoyed doing this as much as I enjoyed following your journey.

Love Elaine xx

Lorraine said...

hi huni well although you had a few probs at the start the end results look amazing i love the water scene it looks great and as you know im a promarker girl and so i couldn't possibly comment on copics as i havent ever tried them but i think you have done an amazing job all the same xx

xxxtglxxx said...

Hi Paula :)

Again, another interesting and enlightening blog entry. I am impressed with your results on the glossy water - it looks amazing.

I have never used copics, or indeed many different kinds of media - just my trusty old PM's and a few water-colour pencils. I would like to try painting with DI's next, but I dont know where to start building up my colours, so I guess it will wait a while.

I love my PM's, I find the paler colours so easy to use to get great effects, and they really seem to neutralise some of the bolder and deeper colours when blending over the top. I tend to stick to the paler colours though, as I paint from the light source outwards (just naturally do that, its probably wrong! lol ). And I am very cautious adding deeper colours, especially if I am not too confident about the cardstocks ability to hold the colour.

I have had my best results on LOTV card, have just got some Neenah (not tried yet) and I also seem to get some decent results from the Craftwork Cards card. I think its a fine balance between technique, familiarity with your media, but most of all I think its a 'knack' you just develop yourself over time and practise..... So dont give up just yet on the copics, especially as you have so many (and they aint cheap!) lol.

Thanks so much for your lovely comment btw, its been great to spend a little time catching up tonight with my favourite blogs. I am well on the mend, and hope a couple more days will see me right :)



My name is Wynneth said...

Hi Paula - thanks for visiting my blog and leaving me a comment. I've enjoyed reading through your 'colouring journey' and found your experiences interesting. I use both Promarkers and Copics, I prefer Copics for skin but as I'm on the I ♥ Promarkers DT I do have to colour some skin with PMs and am comfortable doing skin with them now. I do like the brush tip on Copics, but the rich juiciness of the PM colours gives good coverage. As Alison said, the paler PM's are great for lightening the darker colours for shading. I'm looking forward to your next instalment !

saturated canary said...

i think your water/sky image is pretty awesome! and all your images require an understanding of how colors progress from light to dark, from light to shadows, seems you've mastered it:). the fire also particularly caught my eye...perfect color at the bottom...moving to brighter/lighter up top the flames.

i'd like to have a nosey around that bin of yours:)...think you might have been too hard on yourself over a few of those-- cuz everything here looks beautiful. and all your tips are surely helpful to other card-making girls!

you're inspiring as always my friend:)


GinaA said...

Hi Paula, so impressed with your perseverance, I have not worked through all of the course yet and have only used pencils so far. Your seascape is really good, a fabulous back ground for a sentiment.

Maria Therese said...

Så masse fin fargelegging du ha gjort i d siste!
Thank you for being such a great commenter over at the Sassy blog!!

brenda said...

Hello Paula

I feel so guilty that I can't get about blogland as much as I would like, yet you are so kind to visit and leave wonderful thoughtful comments. I appreciate every one.

I have had a good trawl round whilst I am here and I can see you are having real fun with colours and textures. The dragon further down is amazing and the sea and sky piece is so atmospheric.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

B x

Judy's Crafty Moments said...

Great post Paula,

I can see real progression in your colouring and my tip to you is perseverance. I wish you were closer and you could come for a cuppa and we could play with colouring mediums ! Copics do blend together but it can take a lot of work with some combinations. Many combinations are effortless and some are definitely harder!

Look forward to your next instalment!

Hugs Judy xx

Wendy Ramlakhan said...

Well, you know how much I love my Copics but I guess they aren't for everyone. I wouldn't have a clue how to use the other mediums that you use, so you are certainly talented in lots of various mediums.

I'm so sorry for not stopping by in FOREVER...summer chaos has begun and I've not had any time for blogging. :(