Hand Lettering

5 Ways to Blend Lettering

What a week! Hope you all have been enjoying the #Letter5Ways challenge hosted by myself and Hannah (@daintydaisydesigns_). It has been such a joy to host this challenge.

From my blog post: I Asked, You Answered: 5 Bonuses to Enhance Your Lettering Pieces, one fun way to enhance your lettering is to blend colors together. What do I mean by “blending”? Blending is when you create the effect that one color blends into the next color. Blending can create a watercolor or ombre effect within each letter or over several letters.

There are many different methods to blend colors together! I am going to show you my 5 favorite methods to blend lettering.

1. Rub Your Marker Tips Together

This is a pretty simple technique. You take two different marker colors, rub the darker color marker on to the lighter color marker, and then write with the lighter marker. This method can create a very smooth transition as a gradual blend from the darker color to the lighter color. It can also create a two-tone effect with blending in the middle if you just infuse one side of your marker with a different color. Here are some pictures and links to videos to show you how to do this method!

Gradual Blend Method

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Two-Tone Method featuring Kristen (@kphletters). Check out the link to see a video of her work!

2. Using Glass or Plastic

This method is similar to the first but you use a piece of glass or plastic to blend the two colors together. Simply scribble on the glass with one color and use the other marker to blend the colors together. I love this method because this seems to be the smoothest transition from one color to the next.

Here is a video of this method in action!

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3. Ombre Effect

This is by far my favorite method because of the cool effect it creates! This method uses several shades and blends them together using the lighter shade. The best method I’ve found to create this effect I learned through several artists on Instagram (@alissecourter@letteringbymhel@kphletters just to name a few. Seriously – go check them out they are incredible!) Using the lightest color, you create your initial lettering. Then you take the darkest shade to begin the ombre effect, then take the shade slightly lighter and “wisp” from the darker shade down to blend the colors together. You can continue doing this with several different shades.

Check out this video!

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4. Colorless Blender

You may wonder what the N00 marker that comes with the Tombow kits. This pen is called the colorless blender. I don’t do this method of blending a lot but I love using the colorless blender for the above methods to smooth out the transitions between shades. You can do all of the above methods with multiple colors by using the colorless blender as your base marker.

5.Watercolor Blending

Watercolor blending is another fun form of blending because you let the natural flow of the water do the work to blend the colors together. Watercolor blending can be done several different ways. You can use a brush or an aquabrush with watercolors using the wet on wet technique and letting the flow of water do the work to blend the colors. Or you can apply the shading using markers and use a water brush lightly to blend the colors. So many fun methods for this! Below is a wet-on-wet technique that I used on the cacti to blend pale pinks with medium and darker greens.

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My Favorite Tools

I think it is fairly obvious from the above posts that I adore my Tombow Dual Brush Pens for doing blending. Blending can be done on most water-based markers that I have worked with, including Crayolas!

My favorite papers to blend on are Canson Marker Paper or Rhodia Dot Pats. They paper is smoother to help blend the colors together. Be careful though of over blending because it will ruin the paper. Keep a light hand when blending and you won’t have any issues.

For doing any watercolor blending I love to use the Pentel Aquash Water Brush. The water is in a tube and your pressure creates the amount of water you get to work with which is really nice! When I blend using this method, I like to use the Canson Mixed Media paper!

I can’t wait to see your work on Instagram! Tag @flotographydesign to show you different methods of blending!

~Erin Floto



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