Watercolour Small Images with Aqua

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About Aqua Markers

Spectrum Noir’s water-soluble Aqua markers are a great solution for illustration and design work, especially where you want to create a more diffused, subtle look. Their high quality water-based dyes offer smooth coverage and can be easily diluted and blended with water, which makes them perfect for watercolour style sketching on the move. Aqua markers are also ideally suited for producing stunning background effects and beautiful translucent washes of colour.

Each pen is twin-tipped, combining a flexible brush for loose, broad coverage with an ultra-fine tip for outlining and detail.

Create Backgrounds

Design Team member Gwendolyn has created a step-by-step tutorial on how to use the Aqua markers. These are really great to paint small objects, like the stamps we use for cardmaking. Because of their brush tip and marker tip, they can be controlled more easily than watercolour brushes and paints.


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Step 1

Stamp your chosen image Spectrum Noir’s Pebble waterproof ink from the Finesse range onto watercolour cardstock. This will ensure that the outlines will not run when watercolouring.

Step 2

Start adding colour to the frogs. With the Moss Aqua marker, outline the areas where the darker shades should be. With a waterbrush, blend the colour in by pulling the colour into the white areas.

Optional: Use a more feminine colour for the other frog as it has eyelashes. Again add colour, this time Flame Red and Sunshine, along with Moss and blend it in as before.


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Step 3

With the fine marker tip of the Alpine Green Aqua marker, add spots to the frog in areas where the colour was first put down.

This will add depth and visual interest.

Step 4

With a white ink gel pen add more spots in areas where interest should stand out This helps make the image would be more three-dimensional.


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Step 5

Colour the little cocktail drinks to add behind these two frogs using the same method as with the frogs.

The first colour, in this case Flame Red, starts at to the bottom of the glass and then blends into the white areas. A gradient effect can be achieved by going from red at the bottom to yellow at the top. Added a bit of Sunshine close to the Flame Red. When blended in it will turn orange and then yellow.

Step 6

Use Alpine Green to line the bottom of the glass and add a bit of Lime next to it. When blended it gives a lighter green.


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Step 6

Allow the cocktail images to dry. Use a white gel pen again to add the highlights on the glass of the cocktails and the fruits.

Step 7

Used a grey Aqua marker to the stem of the cocktail, making sure to use a darker shade right underneath the glass as that is where the shadows would be.

Fussy cut the 4 images and arranged them on to my card.

Step 8

Create the Autumn coloured border. First wet the areas where colour is desired. Use the markers to drop in colour by simply touching the brush end tips to the wet paper.

To finish I splattered black and white acrylic ink onto the border and stamped the sentiment with Noir Black ink.

Try It Today

Try it yourself and be sure to share the results with us by tagging #spectrumnoir on Instagram, posting on our Facebook page or in our colouring community, or sharing on Pinterest.