How to create a rainbow blend with inexpensive markers (water based or alcohol!)

Hi friends! Today I have a video that is part review and part tutorial. I have a couple of sets of markers to review but I also wanted to make the video a useful tutorial on blending. Also I was curious about what kind or marker was quicker to color with. I also wanted to try to achieve the same look with different kids of markers to see how they did.  If you are ready for all of that high-speed marker action buckle up and let’s go!

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There is lots of info in this post, let’s start off with the video:

Supplies: (Affiliate links used. Products provided for review)

Review of the Arrtx Alcohol Markers

pros:

  • Price: 80 color for under $34
  • Color selection
  • Blends well
  • Dual tip (chisel & Bullet)
  • Beautiful & sturdy carring case
  • Colors are very juicy, no dry ones.
  • Easy to tell the chisel and bullet ends because they have square and round color chips respectively. Color chips are pretty accurate but I still recommend swatching.
  • Attractive matte white square barrel (non-roll)

Cons:

  • No brush tip
  • No colorless blender in set
  • caps may be difficult to remove if you have arthritis
  • Caps do not post (you can’t stick the cap on the end of the marker to hold it when coloring)
  • As with most low-priced markers there is no open stock option (although they use the same numbering system as Concept at Jerry’s Artarma so you could get a replacement color if you needed too, it would look different tho)
  • Non refillable
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Card made with the butterfly colored with the Arrtx Alcohol markers. Time spent colring the butterfly: 11 minutes, 30 seconds

These markers are beautiful to look at and color nicely. They remind me of the quality of Ohuhu and they even use the same color number system. Many of the lower priced markers available now are using the same numbering system, I reckon it is because all of the inks are being made in the same factory in China. I have not seen this marker barrel style anywhere before and honestly I really like have the two distinct ends because I can quickly uncap the nib I need whereas with Copics and other markers I often get the wrong end even with the gray band they have for identifying. This saves me time and I like that. Below you will find my color chart for the set of 80 Arrtx alcohol markers.

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Here are the colors I used (in order of appearance) to blend the alcohol marker butterfly: 13, 14, 16, 18, 22, 23, 33, 35, 37, 48, 49, 59, 58, 68, 67, 147, 76  *If you have other markers that use the same color number system great! Use what you have OR use the swatch chart to figure out what colors to use from your stash. If you want to order this set you can here.

Review of Arrtx Watercolor Real Brush Pens 48 color set

Pros:

  • Great color selection
  • Low price (even among other budget priced watercolor marker pens)
  • Caps post (you can stick the marker cap on the end while coloring so you don’t lose it)
  • All colors have a number on the end for identification
  • Includes a reusable plastic carring case

Cons:

  • Non refillable and no open stock options
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Card made with the butterfly colored with the Arrtx real brush pen water based markers. Time spent coloring the butterfly: 6 minutes, 50 seconds

These markers performed well as I would expect. I did have an issue with the plastic color coming off one of the pens but I was able to reassemble it and stick it back into place and I could feel some of the innards of the brush pens moving around so it doesn’t feel as good quality as the Zig Real Brush pens but they are less than half the price. The ink flowed smoothly, like other real brush pens I have used. These are on-par with the Arteza real brush pens but about $10 cheaper. If you already have those, or any other real brush pens, I don’t think these will be very different but if you are looking to try some they are a nice value. Below you will find my swatch of this set:

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These are the markers I used on the watercolor butterfly in order of appearance: 18, 5, 4, 3, 27, 226, 28, 25, 125, 36, 238, 7. Feel free to use the swatch as a reference for matching the colors to what you have or if you want to buy this set you can here.

Review of TouchNew Skintone marker set of 24

Pros:

  • Great selection of earth/skin/hair tones which are often lacking in marker sets.
  • Price (under $17 for 24 markers)
  • Dual tipped
  • Cloth carry bag included
  • Comes with a colorless blender

Cons:

  • No brush nib
  • Bullet tips were dry on a couple of my markers
  • Caps do not post
  • No open stock or refills (but you can order Concept markers from Jerry’s to replace a color)

These markers use the same numbering system as the Arrtx alcohol markers as well as other budget brands. The marker style is the same as the original Ohuhu markers who recently changed to an oval barrel that seems to keep the marker fresher as I had a few of the old style Ohuhu pens go dry prematurely.) I recommend storing them on their sides so the bullet tip doesn’t dry out and having denatured alcohol (or Copic blending solution) on hand in case you need to refresh them.  If you need a set of skintone markers to fill in your set these are a good value but I’d check the color numbers to make sure they are not all duplicates to what you have if you already own markers with the same numbering system. Also because one of the marker is a colorless blender you are really only getting 23 colors. I wish these had brush tips though it is so much easier to blend with a brush tip and you want to be able to get really smooth skin and tones. To be honest tho, if you already had a set of 80 or higher of the Arrtx or Ohuhu alcohol markers I think I would pass on these are there are duplicates and consider investing in a couple of Copic brush tip skin tone markers as you need them because in this instance I think it would be more enjoyable and cheaper long-term to get a refillable marker that performs better. If you have a smaller set of assorted markers this 24 set would go a long way to fill in gaps. It really boils down to what you already have for markers and how much you intend to use them.

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I hope you found this helpful and if you have markers I hope you try creating a rainbow blend. It is a great technique for learning to blend and it’s fun too! Or practice blending colors in general and write down your successful recipes so you can duplicate them later. The truth of truths with markers (especial alcohol markers) is that is takes practice and there is a learning curve to them so don’t jump from brand to brand thinking that one is going to make you a superstar. In fact it could harm your progress as you get used to one kind and then when you try another it’s like relearning because it is a bit juicier or the nib is harder or softer. You have to put in the time. Speaking of time wasn’t it interesting how much quicker the water based markers were to color with? I really wanted to do the comparison because I was curious but also to share that if you are not into spending lots of time coloring you might prefer a waterbased marker. Well, this post is long enough, have a great night and til next time happy crafting!

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Stamping Fun with Clay, Inks, Stitching & Paint! Stamp School!

Hi friends! I love to grab different supplies to use in my cardmaking. You can incorporate almost any other craft or hobby into your next card making session. Do you like to use polymer clay? Do you like to sew? Paint? By looking at the supplies you already have for other crafts you can stretch your supplies and come up with some truly unique and beautiful cards!

love_blooms_card_lweirich

In today’s video I’ll show you how to combine stamps and clay, make a cute fence without a die and hand stitch on cards. We will also use paint and ink! I hope you give one of these techniques a try in your next card!

This video is sponsored by Rubber Stamp Tapestry  Use coupon code: FRUGALJULY17 – 10% off everything in the store. Coupon expires July 31, 2017. Become a Peg Stamp VIP & get an instant coupon for 20% off RST stamps here plus the deepest weekly discounts available! Offer expires July 31, 2017.

Supplies:

Directions for flowers:
Before you begin get your clay roses made. If you are using air dry clay make the roses the day before.
1. Condition clay and roll into pea size balls. Flatten.
2. Ink up rose stamps with pigment ink and stamp on the clay disks.
3. Bake according to package directions.
4. You can also paint the roses later if you like!

Card Directions:
1. Make a 5 1/2″ x 4 1/4″card base from kraft. From white card trim a 4″x 5 1/4″ panel and make six 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ strips and two 1/8″ x 4 1/4″ strips. Die cut or tear 2 grass strips from green and punch or hand cut a scalloped oval from any color scrap.

2. Ink the white panel with blue using the scallop oval as a cloud mask then ink the bottom with green. Protect the top part of the panel with a post-it note! Spritz with water if using distress oxide ink for a fun effect!

3. Trim the fence strips so they have points at the top and ink with a blending brush and brown and grey ink. Ink edges with a sponge.

4. Assemble the fence directly on the card. Stamp rose vines over the fence. Glue grass at the bottom.

5. Poke stitching holes with a needle tool or tack on a foam pad. Back-stitch i the holes with green thread.

6. Glue roses on card. You can stamp a sentiment and add a bird like I did if you like!

I had a lot of fun making this card and I love how it turned out! Would you use any of these techniques on a card? Let me know in the comments below and it you liked this project please consider sharing it on your favorite social network using the handy buttons below! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Gettin’ Sketchy with Charcoal! 2 Video Tutorials!

Hi friends! I have been having a lot of fun sketching the past few days. I think I like the minimal amount of supplies and effort while I have been feeling under the weather. All of the supplies I am using came in this months SmartArt subscription box but of course you can use what you have. I want to thank Smart Art for sponsoring this video and let you know that they are now shipping to Canada as well as the US. Now, grab your charcoal and let’s get sketchy!

The first video is in real-time with live narration. We discuss a lot of techniques as well as finding the light source and shading. Email subscribers will need to click over to watch the video and see the projects because video thumbnails are not visible in emails. Enjoy!

Video #1!

It’s fun AND easy! I also got a chance to upload a speed draw of the moon tutorial I showed in the fist video. I’m glad I sped it up because that was as long as my voice lasted today. I am so wishing I bought stock in Kleenex this week! Enough of the snot-talk, here is the tutorial. 😀 This is also part of the #lovefallart collaboration with the Creative Arts Community on YouTube! Oh and I added 2 things that were not in the SmartArt kit: Hairspray and white chalk, now you can enjoy. 😉

Video #2!

If you want to see what is in next’s month’s Smart Art box (and create right along with me with the same supplies) make sure to visit Smart Art and subscribe, the boxes get cheaper the longer you sign up for. I’ve got 3 boxes so far and they have all been a great value of high quality supplies. To find out more visit SmartArtBox.com. I hope this inspired you to grab some simple supplies and draw, it is so much fun and you don’t need a ton of supplies to do it. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Tutorial: How to Blend Colored Pencils with Baby Oil

Hello friends! Check out this fun card and bookmark set. The neat thing how I blended the colored pencils on the bookmarks, not with stinky solvents but with baby oil!

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Not only does it work but it is quicker and uses less pigment than blending with dry pencils. See how in today’s video tutorial:

I hope you give this a try, it will work with any regular wax or oil based pencils, even the inexpensive children’s brands. Have a great night and til next time happy crafting!

Fancy Coloring with Bics and Sharpies!

Are you frustrated by the price of art markers? Buying a set of Copics can send even the spendiest of crafters into sticker shock so today I am going to show you how you can blend with inexpensive Sharpie and Bic Markits. These markers are about $1 each (less in a multopack or if on sale!) so they are a great way to get your feet wet without breaking the bank. On these tags half were colored with Copic markers, and the rest with Bics and Sharpies, can you tell which is which? Don’t mind the watercolor poppy tag I demoed the other day (oops!)…how’d that get in there? BTW the stunningly gorgeous stamps I used are by About Art Accents-save 10% with coupon Lindsay10% AND the set is on sale too!!!

 

So what are you waiting for, check out this video and see just how to blend with the cheap markers!

The bottom line is that the ink in the expensive art markers and the cheap office supply store variety is basically the same, but the range of colors are limited so I recommend that you buy a multipack of Bic Mark Its or Sharpies and then splurge on a clear blending marker and maybe a few pale shades of markers so you can expand your color range. You can snag my printable cross-reference chart (Bic markers/Prismacolor/Copic) so you don’t buy doubles. Also I recommend you hand color these charts so you really see what the color will be. Here are the images I colored in the video, not bad for cheap markers eh?

 

Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Video Tutorial: Easy Blending with All Markers!

Happy Friday folks! I was playing with the new Framed Floral ATC stamps from About Art Accents (by the way, the set of 9 ATC size stamps are on sale for $16.99-regular $29.99 and you can save 10% more with my coupon code: Lindsay10%) and they are just perfect for coloring with markers! The card on the left was colored with Copics (alcohol markers) while the one on the Right uses a couple of watercolor markers. They both can be blended and a quick to color.

Here is a quick video to show you how easy it is to blend with either type of markers:

Here are my tips for using markers:

  1. Pick the right paper for the project. I love super smooth cardstock (Neenah #80 Classic Crest in Solar White) for my alcohol ink markers BUT for watercolor markers watercolor paper works best. If you really want to work on cardstock with watercolor markers Stampin’ Up cardstock is the best uncoated cardstock I have tried…still, I’d choose watercolor paper.
  2. Work dark to light, I know this sounds counterintuitive but trust me, it works and you can get by with fewer markers. When you work light to dark you need to work with colors that are just a hair darker than the previous but when you start dark and go over that with the middle value (like I did in the video) you can jump a few shades meaning you need fewer markers to get the same results.
  3. Color a swatch on a scrap of the paper you are using to see if the colors really blend well together before you start coloring you picture, this will save a lot of time and wasted paper.
  4. Relax, practice and have fun, after all it’s only coloring!

Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Dip dye! Oh my! {and a contest!}

Hey peeps! I just had to pop in quickly and tell you about the sketch contest I am sponsoring over at Tuesday Morning Sketches this week. Here is the card I made with the sketch:

Digital Stamps: Lindsay's Stamp Stuff, Paper: American Crafts, Friend rubber stamp: Inkadinkado

Digital Stamps: Lindsay's Stamp Stuff, Paper: American Crafts, Friend rubber stamp: Inkadinkado, Die Cuts: Cricut

If you want to play along visit their blog here, and make a card based on the sketch and you might win a gift certificate to the Lindsay’s Stamp Stuff Shop! What fun! I used the dear deer stamp, and the primitive flowers stamp available at the Lindsay’s stamp Stuff shop. The “friend” stamp is from Inkadinkado and I altered it because it was too long so after I stamped it I cut it and inked the raw end. I quickly colored the images with prismacolor pencils and blended with Goo-Gone, Since I was going to trim them out I didn’t bother to stay within the lines, it really speeds this up!

Here is the dyed crochet flower! {and anoter one of my dollar Tree brads!}

Here is the dyed crochet flower! {and anoter one of my dollar Tree brads!}

I also wanted to share a fun technique with you today, dip dying! Here I took a flower that crocheted from white crochet cotton and I wet it then I sprayed a bit of liquid watercolor (a drop of reinker, or even a scribble of waterbased marker would also work) on a plastic baggie then dipped the edges of the flower in it and set it on a clean spot of the baggie to dry. It gives you a subtle gradient of color, it would be pretty on cloth or tissue paper flowers too and you can dye it to match your project. *note: If you plan to wash this then use a fabric dye and a soda ash fixative.

Have a great Tuesday everyone!

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