Choosing the Best Watercolor Crayons

Watercolor crayons provide watercolorists with the ease of working in a familiar medium. But the crayon has grown up and is now water soluble. A crayon drawing becomes a painting with the addition of water. Learn how to use this easy medium to fit your personal style of painting and it will quickly become an indispensable sketching supply you use either at home or on the road.

Watercolor Without Water?
It can be difficult to find a water source when far from the comfort of your studio. Quick watercolor sketching, sweeping vista or diminutive scaled watercolor postcards are not a problem when you travel with watercolor crayons. Leave your over-priced sable brush at home and transform your drawing into a painting when you return home. A sweep of a water brush quickly renders your dry crayon marks into vast watercolor skies or sweeping green fields. A small brush will reveal the details.

Experiment with different ways of using this new painting medium. Loose, juicy washes of color are possible, as well as highly detailed work. To work in a more controlled fashion, use a damp brush instead of a wet brush and work slowly into your painting, segment by segment. Pick up color by scrubbing a bit of the crayon onto another surface first. The inside lid of the tin the pencils are packed in is ideal. Dip a wet brush tip into the paint daub. Apply that bit of paint in small areas of your sketch.

Tips And Tricks
Watercolorists have certain traditions and expectations. One is maintaining some whites on the paper. A wax-based crayon laid down first will resist the wet brush and thus retain the white of the paper.

Watercolor crayons can be blended wet or dry for a seemingly endless palette of hues and colors. Mixing dry colors together (one over another) and then wetting can be startling as colors are intense when wet. Test your color combo out first. For consistency of color, buy the biggest set of the high quality crayons.

Portability Plus
Travel across the country, hike out into the woods and sketch on location. Finding a water source for painters is no longer an issue. With watercolor crayons, you need not bother packing your over-priced brushes. Since you are not painting until your return, leave your carefully rolled sable brushes at the hotel. Traditional creamy watercolors might not pass the ever changing rules and regulations of the airlines. Watercolor crayons do not pose that problem.

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