Introduction: What Are Real Brush Pens?
Real brush pens are unique ink-based markers that feature bristle tips instead of the common felt, chisel, or sponge tips. These pens can behave like markers, pens, or brushes depending on the surface you use them on. They are filled with water-based ink that is released as the tip touches the painting surface, allowing artists to achieve watercolor effects without the need for traditional watercolor paint tubes, pans, or cups. Arteza Real Brush Pens, in particular, offer convenience, ease of use, and a mess-free experience for sketching on location or at home.
Arteza Real Brush Pens are dynamic watercolor markers known for their versatility. They can be used with or without water and feature more bristles than many leading brush pens on the market. The longer, durable, and flexible bristles make these pens suitable for various artistic endeavors, including painting, drawing, sketching, lettering, and coloring.
Using Real Brush Pens with Water
To achieve watercolor effects with Real Brush Pens, follow these steps:
- Select your desired color and dip the brush halfway into water, submerging the flexible nylon tip for no longer than one second.
- The intensity of the color will depend on the amount of water used. For a light, transparent effect, leave the brush pen in the water for a longer duration.
- Experiment with different amounts of water to achieve different outcomes and a wide range of shades.
It’s important not to keep the brush pen in water for too long to avoid the pigment becoming too transparent. If the water becomes too colored, indicating excessive dilution, it’s better to add more water later using a water brush pen rather than losing all the pigment.
Celebrated artist Celeste Jones recommends drawing as if slightly “rubbing” the marker into the paper. Over time, the pigment will become more saturated, allowing for tone transitions.
Mastering Water Brush Pens
Water brush pens are an excellent complement to Real Brush Pens and offer various techniques for creating beautiful artwork. Here are three options for using water brush pens:
- Option 1: Rub the desired brush pen marker color on a palette and customize the tone using the water brush pen included in your set. This technique allows for blending and the creation of watercolor effects.
- Option 2: You can paint directly with the water brush pen. Mix several colors on the palette and apply them using the water brush. This method yields delicate and light shades. Dip the water brush back into the color on the palette as needed to build up layers and intensify the color.
- Option 3: Pre-wet the background with the water brush pen and then paint with a dry Real Brush Pen. Begin by filling the detailed areas of your drawing with a single color. Once applied, you can add other shades, just like in traditional watercolor painting. The wet paper will allow the colors to mix, spread, and flow gracefully.
Apply the brush pens gently, avoiding excessive pressure to preserve the integrity of the brush tip. Celeste Jones recommends using a light touch for better control. With proper care, your brush pens will last a long time. Additionally, you can create a transparent glaze over your canvas by spreading a barely noticeable color. Dilute the color on the palette first, then brush it over the entire surface of your paper.
Using Real Brush Pens without Water
Real Brush Pens can also be used without water to achieve different effects. Here are three options for using them:
- Option 1: Draw directly on the paper and experiment with different grips to familiarize yourself with how the bristles work on the surface. Explore different shapes, color combinations, and stroke techniques. The longer and more flexible the bristles, the greater the variety you can achieve.
- Option 2: Utilize the texture of the paper for special effects. Place the brush pen tightly against the paper, sweeping it to showcase the paper’s texture. This technique works particularly well for backgrounds or adding details to illustrations.
- Option 3: Pre-wet the background and then paint with dry Real Brush Pens. Moisten the desired area with water, and then start drawing. Fill the detailed areas of your drawing with a single color before adding other shades, just like in traditional watercolor painting. When the paper is wet, the colors will mix and flow beautifully.
Avoid applying excessive pressure when using the brush pens without water to preserve their integrity. Treat them as you would regular watercolor paintbrushes. Celeste Jones suggests using the entirety of your Arteza Real Brush Pens to draw details, as the flexible brush can create thin lines. Varying the pressure will allow you to achieve different degrees of thickness. Experiment with this versatile tool to draw eyes, lips, hair, animal fur, landscape elements, or illustrations.
Combining Two Real Brush Pens
To create gradient effects, you can combine two Real Brush Pens. Follow these steps:
- Take two contrasting colors, such as yellow and emerald.
- Run the lighter shade over the brush tip of the darker color.
- The lighter shade will pick up the ink from the brush of the darker one, resulting in a gradient effect. Initially, you’ll notice a bit of emerald, which will then gradually transition to yellow.
Real Brush Pens can be easily mixed on a palette using a Water Brush Pen or a pen of a different color. Remember to rinse the brush pens if the brush becomes dirty from a different color.
Avoid mixing complementary tones, as they can create dull and muddy hues. Complementary tones are colors opposite each other on the color wheel, such as red and green, purple and yellow, and orange and blue. Celeste Jones recommends laying down a dark tone on wet paper, then brushing a light paint color over it. With this technique, you can create textures, patterns, or simulate incident light, similar to traditional watercolor painting.
As artists, we love exploring new tools and stepping out of our comfort zones. Whether you’re decorating a daily planner or bringing a black and white portrait to life with charcoal, Arteza Real Brush Pens are a valuable addition to your artistic toolbox, particularly for beginners in watercolor. With their soft tips and high degree of flexibility, these brush pens make it effortless to create a variety of strokes. The water-soluble ink is washable, and Arteza offers a wide range of watercolors. So go ahead, blend, paint, and create to your heart’s content!
Frequently Asked Questions
What paper should I use?
For optimal results, we recommend using Arteza 9×12″ Watercolor Pads. The texture of these pads enhances the paint’s appearance, particularly when using Real Brush Pens without water.
What is the best way to draw a background with Real Brush Pens?
The wet-on-wet technique is ideal for drawing backgrounds. Start by creating a 1-2mm border using washi tape or painter’s tape along the edge of your watercolor paper. Once the background is dry, use your brush pen to add details.
What is the best way to draw details with Real Brush Pens?
While Real Brush Pens can be used for drawing details, we recommend transferring the color from the brush pen to a palette for very small details. Use a thin brush and draw the details using the color from the palette.
I’m a beginner, what else should I know?
Celeste Jones suggests testing colors on another piece of paper before applying them to your artwork. This allows you to create swatches and familiarize yourself with color combinations. When mixing colors, avoid combining more than three colors to prevent muddiness. Experiment with mixing neutral colors or warm colors with other warm shades. Similarly, try combining colors that are close to each other on the color wheel to avoid canceling each other out.
Remember to have fun and embrace the creative process!