Project of the Week – Ink and Watercolor Doodle

April 17, 2023

Most of my art training was in oil paints, charcoal pencils, pastels, and other drawing mediums. The one area I never had a chance to explore was that of watercolor painting.

Recently I have been doodling and experimenting with watercolors. I love mixing them up with my charcoals and pastels (always reliable), but ink has been a challenge. It runs. It smears. Why aren’t they waterproof when they say waterproof. Frustration.

After some carefully chosen colorful words, I took my watercolors and decided to make an experiment board. I wanted to see what worked, and what didn’t work when it comes to adding ink to watercolors. Well, I discovered two things. First, inking over watercolor is amazing… once it’s dry. Second, watercolor painting over ink is also amazing when you find the right ink pen.

So, after some experimentation, here are the results.

In this sweet tag, watercolor paper serves as the base. I added in some color splotches, let dry, and then freehanded loose “doodle” flowers on top. I added some highlights and accents with Posca paint pens, paper flowers, and a sentiment. Not bad for this practice. The pen used is a scrapbooking pen which I later found out is not suitable for inking FIRST and then adding WATERCOLOR. Ink second..

In this piece, I first inked on my watercolor paper. I created again some loose freehanded “doodle” flowers. The pen of choice – a good ole’ ultra fine tipped Sharpie. Sorry folks.. it works for me. Then I added watercolor on top of the ink WITHOUT any running. Success!! I added another sentiment and voila! A finished piece. I did tape the sides so this will slip easily into my mat. Love the results!

See the images below for the inked version ONLY and then the addition of the watercolor paints. Give it a try!

Ink alone and then the addition of the watercolor paints.