Time to Think Ink!

As readers of this blog will know, I quite often use ink in conjunction with watercolour in my paintings. However, ink is a very useful medium in its own right, particularly for quick sketches.

Sketch of St Clement Burnham Overy
St Clement church Burnham Overy Town. Stabilo 68 pen on Bockingford paper, 10ins x 8ins
The work shown here is a sketch of St Clement church, Burnham Overy Town, which near the popular North Norfolk village of Burnham Market, just a mile or so from the coast. I made this sketch using a Stabilo 68 water-soluble pen. This enabled me to work over the sketch with a damp brush, softening the ink and brushing it out into areas of tone. It’s another way of showing tonal value, without using shading or hatching, and I find it has a rather attractive appearance. Although the ink appears black when you draw a line, diluting it with water reveals many subtle colours within it.

The Stabilo pen is very inexpensive and is available from some stationers. The 68 has a bullet tip which makes a fairly bold line that I personally like. There is a version with a finer tip the Stabilo 88, which is also well worth trying. If you can’t find these pens in your local stationers then you can buy them on-line from the SAA, the Society for All Artists.

I will be demonstrating this technique, along with many other uses of ink, at my Think Ink workshop, this weekend at West Norfolk Arts Centre, Castle Rising.