Peace, Love and Harmony

Here’s a simple project using Splash Inks and Oil Pastels, specifically the white pastel.

On some watercolor card stock I took the white pastel and drew a peace sign, then a heart, and last, a yin-yang symbol.


Next, using the Splash Ink formula guide I mixed some cool colors (again like in my previous post about glazing, I used the Niji Waterbrush as a water dropper). On the peace sign I wanted a kind of tye-dye effect, so I painted a swirl at first, then made splatters and took a softer watercolor brush and blended the colors. Because oil and water don’t mix the peace symbol came through and I really liked the effect.



To symbolize Harmony I took the yin-yang symbol and did the same process with purple tones and pale yellow to make the oil paster stand out on the paper.


Finally for Love, I know, it’s cliché but I had to use the heart. Simplicity is my middle name (okay, not literally).


And there you have it, my wish for the coming new year. Peace, Love and Harmony to all.


Glazing with Niji Splash Ink


Today  I want to show examples of a watercolor technique called glazing, which is basically painting in layers of color. The Niji Splash Ink is a very cool system. In a set you get the three primary colors, plus black. You also get a formula guide to make other colors. This is really a fantastic and easy system to get consistent colors instead of having to blindly mix colors and wasting a lot of paint.


What you need:

  • Niji Splash Ink
  • water dropper or a Yasutomo waterbrush
  • watercolor paper (I used watercolor postcards here)
  • watercolor brushes
  • brush cleaning water  and container (I used an old yogurt tub)

I started with two blank watercolor postcards. I mix up some colors using the handy chart. For a dropper I use the water brush.


With a wide flat brush I first lay down a wash of water. This is so the paint will go down more smoothly. Then on one I put down a wash of one color. On the other I decide to do a multicolored background.

greenbackgroundpaper colorfulbackgroundpaper

I let them dry and then on the single colored card I put down a swirl design in the same color.



Again, I let the paint dry and then I go back and add dashes with the same color again. Another “layer”.


While that one is drying I go back to the other painting with the multicolored background. Where I live there was an iconic ironwood tree that seemed to defy the natural elements and even though it was not living anymore it still stood tall on the beach. People would climb it and decorate it. I used to draw it almost daily, every time I went to the beach. I wrote about it on another blog when it finally did come crashing down in a severe storm a couple of years ago. You can read about it here and see some of my old sketches:  So I decided to paint the tree again on the multicolored background. I used an ink drawing I had done at the beach as my reference. I start again with the same green tone I had already mixed.


First I paint a line drawing, let it dry and go back for shading. Letting it dry after each application and painting over an area to make it darker and darker. We’re glazing.


Here are the finished paintings and original sketch of the tree.


Of course I was having too much fun experimenting with the  Splash Ink, so I decided to do more. This time playing with negative space. I took a card and after the water and color wash (and letting it dry) I drew different sized circles in pencil.


I then painted in the same color the negative space, that is, the space around the circles, not the circles themselves.


I went back and drew more circles, intersecting the existing circles and painted around them again.



I did this over and over until I ended up with this.


Then I thought what if I did paint just the dots, the “positive space” going through all the same steps, letting the paint dry at each step. The beauty of Splash Ink is if you run out of paint you can mix the same color again using the formulas already calculated. Here’s that version.


Neat effect, I think I prefer the negative version. I’m going on…


and now it’s your turn.