10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers

One of our favorite ways to add color to our art projects is with trusty TriBlend™ markers. We recently picked our artists’ brains and put together a list of 10 practical tips, tricks, and ideas for using these colorful tools!

10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers #markers #coloring #color #closetomyheart #ctmh #triblend #blend #colors

If you are not familiar with TriBlend™ markers, inside every marker there is a gradation of colors, from light to dark, delivered through three separate fine bullet nibs. You basically get three markers in one! The alcohol-based ink is especially designed to blend seamlessly for mixing and layering the shades.

When blending alcohol-based inks, there are a few things to keep in mind.

1. The surface onto which you are applying the inks will make a difference in how to layer or mix them. If you are using a porous surface, like paper, and are hoping to create a seamless blend, don’t allow the ink to dry between color applications. Start with the lightest color, then add a darker shade, overlapping some of the color in the middle of the two. While the ink is still wet, it will move and spread through the fibers of the paper. When two colors of ink are wet on top of each other, they will spread into each other, creating a more seamless blend.

10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers #markers #coloring #color #closetomyheart #ctmh #triblend #blend #colors

The same is true in the opposite scenario. If you want to create a seam in between colors, allow the first color to dry. When applying the second color, don’t overlap too much, because this second color will continue to spread into the first color until it dries.

2. This second tip is more of a trick that we use when we color our stamped images with TriBlend™ markers. Like we mentioned above, alcohol ink will spread through the fibers of a piece of paper when it’s still wet. Keep that in mind as you color a stamped image, and avoid coloring up to the edges, leaving a tiny space for the ink to move into on its own. If you apply too much ink to a stamped image, even though you may have colored in the lines, it may not look that way by the time the ink is absorbed and dries.

10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers #markers #coloring #color #closetomyheart #ctmh #triblend #blend #colors

3. Alcohol ink doesn’t just absorb into paper and cardstock, but it usually also soaks through it. When coloring parts of a project, we recommend using scratch paper underneath it. If you are going to color directly onto your project, remember that you will see the bleed-through on the other side. If you are working on a card, for example, you will see bleed-through of colored images on the inside of your card if you color directly on the card front. There are two ways you can address this: You can either create separate pieces for coloring that will get attached to the card front afterward, or, you can add a piece of cardstock on the inside of the card to cover up the spots where the ink has soaked through. (In the cards above, the elements that were colored with TriBlend™ markers are on separate pieces of paper from the card base).

4. If you’d like to color on vellum with TriBlend™ markers, go for it! Vellum is less porous than regular paper, therefore it does not absorb the ink. Since the ink does not absorb into vellum, it also doesn’t spread the way it would on paper. You can still move and blend the ink, but in this case, you will do so yourself with the nib of your marker. The ink will dry on the surface, and it will dry well since it is alcohol-based.

You can create a softer “stained glass” effect by coloring stamped images on vellum from behind!

  • 10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers #markers #coloring #color #closetomyheart #ctmh #triblend #blend #colors

5. Our fifth tip is to use the Blender Marker. Though technically not a “TriBlend” marker, since it only has two nibs, this marker contains a colorless alcohol-based ink and is intended to be used as a blender with other alcohol-based color markers. What we’ve discovered is our use is that this marker works well to lift and lighten other colors. Our artists love to use it to create sheens or light reflections on things like balloons, sunglasses, or fruit.

One of the perks of blending different shades of one color in alcohol inks is that creating shadows has never been easier!

6. This tip applies to all coloring projects, not just ones using TriBlend™ markers! Before you begin coloring, consider your “light source.” If you are hoping to achieve a more dimensional look by coloring your images with shadows, you will need to decide where the fictional “light” is coming from to determine where the darker, shaded areas of our images will be. Where the “light” hits your images, these areas will be lighter.

7. Once you know where your “light” is coming from, you can begin shading your image. Start with the lightest shades and gradually work out to the darkest shades. Blend these different shades by going over the intersections with the lighter shade. Also, remember to shade while the ink is wet. Break larger images into sections in order to blend while the ink is still wet. If you color all of the lighter areas first, by the time you get to the next shade your first one will be dry.

10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers #markers #coloring #color #closetomyheart #ctmh #triblend #blend #colors

8. If you want to create an actual shadow behind an image, the lightest Brown Grey blend marker is the way to go! Color outside the lines of a stamped image, only along the parts where a shadow would fall. Consider your light source to figure out where that should be. this shadow outline will create a dimensional effect, as if your picture were propped on foam tape even though it’s not!

TriBlend™ markers can be used for so much more than just coloring a stamped image!

9. Alcohol markers are a great tool for coloring embellishments! They dry very well on non-porous surfaces, like those of gems and acrylic shapes. (Revisit this post from a few weeks ago to see more!)

10 Tips and Ideas for Using TriBlend™ Markers #markers #coloring #color #closetomyheart #ctmh #triblend #blend #colors

10. Use TriBlend™ markers to color the white core of a ripped piece of cardstock or paper, create a “wash” behind titles and sentiments, freestyle additional design elements for your projects, or even use them with a stencil!

To create a wash with your marker, it’s easiest to hold your marker horizontally to the paper and use the side of the nib rather than the tip. Also, be aware that alcohol-markers will stain any stencil that you color through. These stains will not ruin your stencil, they will simply make it more colorful!

We truly love creating with these markers, and hope you do, too! Get creative as you color your art, and experiment with the different shades each of the TriBlend™ markers has to offer.

To help you do that, we’ve put together the following color reference chart:

Download and print a free blank chart, here (here for AU/NZ), and add the three shades of each available marker color to its corresponding rectangle. (You’ll notice that the downloadable chart is two pages long, and that is because we’ve added to our color options since this top chart was created!) We’ve also added the True Black marker to the list, although it doesn’t have different shade options, in order to have all the color options available for reference in one place.

**Make your chart last longer by printing it on cardstock rather than regular printer paper, and keep it handy as you’re making color and shade choices for your artwork.**

Thanks for joining us on this colorful journey today! In the comments below, let us know how you’re using these markers and what you love about them!

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Marker Shading 101

Our final stamping technique in honor of National Stamping Month is a perennial favorite: how to bring your stamped images to life using marker shading! Today’s post will show you how to get multiple color shades from a single marker.

Step One: stamp your image. If you’re not sure what ink to use, see our tips at the end of this post.

Marker Shading Technique Step 1 #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #markers #markershading #markertechnique #flower #floral

Step Two: color your image using ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ markers. These markers are alcohol based, which makes them ideal for blending.

Marker Shading Technique Step 2 #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #markers #markershading #markertechnique #flower #floral

Step Three: decide where the “light” is coming from. To create a three-dimensional effect, which is what we’re trying to achieve by shading, you must determine where the light and shadows will be. Using the colorless blender, lighten the areas of your image where the light touches it.

Marker Shading Technique Step 3 #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #markers #markershading #markertechnique #flower #floral #highlight

Step Four: Re-color shaded areas. Using the same color markers, go over the shaded areas again to darken them.

Marker Shading Technique Step 4 #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #markers #markershading #markertechnique #flower #floral 

That’s it! Easy-peasy, right?! You can use this technique directly on a scrapbook page, a card base, or to create an original 3-D accent piece like we did with this card.

 Marker Shading Technique #ctmh #closetomyheart #cardmaking #markers #markershading #markertechnique #congrats

INK TIPS: The very first thing we have to do, before picking out colors or anything of the sort, is to consider if we are using the correct ink for our stamping. Which is the correct ink? Isn’t black just black? Well, it depends on your stamping surface and what you will use to color in the image. Here’s a quick breakdown for you. Our Black Exclusive Inks™ is best used for images that you will stamp in solid black. Then there’s the Archival Black Exclusive Inks™. We like to use this ink especially in our scrapbooks because it’s colorfast and truly archival. You can add color to Archival Black ink with watercolors or alcohol-based markers, even, but you must make sure it is completely dry before you do so or your image will bleed. Black Memento™ ink is a favorite because it dries quicker than Archival Black and it doesn’t bleed when you add color. We’ve also learned, however, that the Memento™ ink does not work well on vellum paper and Archival Black does. The last one of the bunch that deserves a quick mention is the StazOn™ ink. StazOn™ works well with non-porous surfaces, such as glass, metals, ceramics, etc.

All of the stamped images on today’s post were done with Archival Black ink.

If you’ve got any comments or questions on what we’ve shared today, please let us know below!


Recipes

3″ x 3″ So Happy for You Card
C1693 My Acrylix® Many Congrats Stamp Set, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5974 Raspberry Cardstock, Z3271 Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2457 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Marigold Marker, Z2448 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Carmine Marker, Z2459 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Pastel Green Marker, Z2466 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Vivid Green Marker, Z2454 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Leaf Green Marker, Z3189 White & Gold Ribbon, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z3274 Clear Sparkles

3″ x 3″ I’m a Big Kid Now Card
Z3373 School Kids Stamp and Thin Cuts, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5960 Fern Cardstock, Z3271 Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2448 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Carmine Markers, Z2455 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Light Orange Marker, Z2451 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Clay Marker, Z2456 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Mahogany Marker, Z2454 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Leaf Green Marker, Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker, Z2458 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Marine Blue Marker, Z2467 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Warm Grey 4 Marker, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape

3″ x 3″ Welcome Little One Card
B1558 My Acrylix® Baby Animals Stamp Set, Z3350 Whimsy Fundamental Paper Packet, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, Z3271 Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2461 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Peacock Green Marker, Z2451 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Clay Marker, Z2459 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Pastel Green Marker, Z2452 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Golden Yellow Marker, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z3274 Clear Sparkles, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape

3″ x 3″ Congrats Card
B1558 My Acrylix® Baby Animals Stamp Set, D1747 My Acrylix® Happily Ever After Stamp Set, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5982 Canary Cardstock, Z3271 Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2454 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Leaf Green Marker, Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker, Z2459 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Pastel Green Marker, Z2452 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Golden Yellow Marker, Z2453 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Lavender Marker, Z1799 Silver Shimmer Trim, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z3274 Clear Sparkles, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape

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Shading Flowers with Watercolors

How to shade your stamped flowers using watercolors #watercolors #watercolortechniques #howto #painting #crafting #cardmaking #wedding #bridalshower #ctmh #closetomyheart

Today is National Floral Design Day, and to celebrate, we want to share with you a fun watercolor technique for getting beautifully shaded flowers, like those on this card from our Seasonal Expressions 1 idea book.

Step One

Mix your favorite watercolor paints with water to create a mixture that has roughly the same consistency as milk. Then, using an ink color of your choice, stamp your flowers. We stamped ours with Whisper ink.

How to shade your stamped flowers using watercolors #watercolors #watercolortechniques #howto #painting #crafting #cardmaking #wedding #bridalshower #ctmh #closetomyheart

Step Two

Paint a light coat of your watercolor mixture onto your first flower, covering the entire surface.

How to shade your stamped flowers using watercolors #watercolors #watercolortechniques #howto #painting #crafting #cardmaking #wedding #bridalshower #ctmh #closetomyheart

Step Three

Mix a darker shade of the same color, and start adding it to just the “shaded” areas of the flower. You want to add it as a thick line. It won’t look pretty and blended yet, but that’s the look you want for this step!

Not sure where to add shading? A good general rule is to shade the edges of the petals that are closest to the center of the flower. If you prefer, you can also look at real photos of flowers online and follow the shading you see there. Continue to step four before the paint has dried.

Step Four

Rinse out your brush. Using a small amount of clean water, gently blend the color out toward each petal’s edge without going all the way to the edge. Allow to dry.

How to shade your stamped flowers using watercolors #watercolors #watercolortechniques #howto #painting #crafting #cardmaking #wedding #bridalshower #ctmh #closetomyheart

That’s the gist of the technique! Repeat for any additional flowers and leaves that you want!

Here are a few general tips to keep in mind when painting with your watercolors:

  • You’ll notice we didn’t use our waterproof Archival Black ink to stamp this image. You can use dye-based inks when coloring with watercolors, but you’ll want to be careful not to touch the edges of the stamp image with your brush or else it will make the ink bleed.
  • If using dye-based ink, we recommend using a lighter color. That way if there is any slight bleeding, it will not be too noticeable. A lighter color also draws the eye to the watercoloring of the flowers rather than the outline of the flowers.
  • If you want a “no line” look, you can use a light ink color and carefully color the lines completely. If you like to see the lines though, you can reinforce the stamp image by stamping the image again after the paint is completely dry. Both methods have their own beauty.

Happy painting!

Recipe

4¼” × 5½” You’re Invited Card (Vertical)
X7216B Hello Lovely Paper Packet, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, Z3146 Watercolor Paper, Z2872 Whisper Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2864 Sorbet Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z3313 Blush Shimmer Ribbon, Z3312 Gold Glitter Gems, Z3132 Watercolor Paints, Z3188 Paintbrush Set, Z3301 Hello Lovely Cardmaking Thin Cuts Bundle (includes stamp set C1670), Z2046 Piercing & Embossing Tool Kit, Z1852 Stitch Guide, Z3247 Simple Chevron Embossing Folder, Embossing/Die-cutting Machine, Thread

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