Technicolour Roots

Well, I’ve had a couple of tricky days, where I just couldn’t do a picture, I don’t know why. But last night in the cool of the evening I managed to snap out of it. I’d bought these radishes earlier in the day, wonderful specimens with a vivid pink which was quite spectacular. ‘Tombow time’, I thought; not too much mixing of colours, just laying it on and pushing it about.

Radishes tombowsWhat I didn’t take into account was that I don’t have a very subtle selection of greens and yellows, and that’s why the foliage here is somewhat lurid, rather than being the actual greeny-grey-yellow of the radish leaves. Bizarrely, I quite like it that way – I’d never have used these colours with traditional watercolours, but they do add a very interesting dimension. The same applies to the shadows.

All in all, I’m pleased that I knuckled down to this one. An hour well spent, to get me back into it (hopefully).

27 thoughts on “Technicolour Roots

    • Thanks! Tombows are watercolours in pen form. They behave initially like a traditional felt tip (albeit with a choice of two ends; brush or fine) and then you use water (I use a brush pen) to spread and blend the colours. Winsor & Newton do make a version too, but they are rather more expensive. I picked my set up on Amazon for about Β£25 for a set of 18. My intention was to use them as a portable sketching set, but I haven’t followed through on this. I’ve only used them for two pictures so far, and these have been subjects which have very vibrant colours and so seem a good match for the fairly lurid pen set I have. I do believe you can buy other colour sets though. That’s one of the advantages of the W&N pens – you can choose only the ones you want, but at nearly Β£4 each (at The Range) I should think so too! πŸ™‚

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      • Intriguing! They sound very interesting and look great in this painting – I wouldn’t have known it was done in something other than regular watercolour. Can you mix and match the pens with normal painting?

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      • I particularly like the way they allow you to apply very intense colour, which is something I have trouble with when using my traditional watercolour pans. I also appreciate how they offer the control over application of a pen with the characteristics of paint. I don’t see why you couldn’t mix and match with traditional watercolours… I suppose it could take a bit of playing with to make sure that the application of neat water didn’t adversely affect the trad washes, but I’m pretty sure it could be made to work. If you decide to give them a whirl, I really look forward to seeing how you use them. πŸ™‚


  1. I just bought a cute small travel box of Sennelier watercolors and in my order I was just about to buy the W&N markers I didn’t this time but I guess I will since the finale effect it is great! It would be also great to use for some accents while using regular watercolors! Your work here is beautiful! πŸ™‚

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