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The best way to Draw a Koi Fish with Coloured Pencils

The best way to Draw a Koi Fish with Coloured Pencils

Colored pencil drawing of a Koi Fish

Drawing with Coloured Pencils on Toned Paper

On this lesson, we’re going to check out making a drawing of a koi fish utilizing coloured pencils on toned drawing paper. You’ll see how straightforward it’s to make sure accuracy in your drawing, utilizing a switch course of. And we’ll additionally check out how summary shapes of shade and worth typically result in the phantasm of realism in a drawing.

Right here’s a take a look at the finished drawing…

Supplies and Floor

On this lesson, we’re utilizing Prismacolor Premier coloured pencils on Canson Mi-Teintes pastel paper. Canson Mi-Teintes paper options two distinct sides. One facet of the paper is closely textured, whereas the opposite facet is much less textured. We’ll be engaged on the much less textured facet of the paper. (The next hyperlinks are affiliate hyperlinks which implies I make a small fee if you buy at no extra price to you.)

Transferring the Picture

A photograph reference is used to create the drawing. Right here’s a take a look at the reference picture…

Photo reference of a Koi Fish

We’re going to start out out by utilizing a switch course of to make sure that we get the contour traces of our fish in place on our drawing floor. We’ll use a little bit of PanPastel and apply it to the again of the picture reference. I’ve printed out the picture reference on simply common typing paper and I’m utilizing the white PanPastel and making use of it pretty liberally to the again of the picture reference.

I’ll take my drawing paper, which I’ve already ready and tape it down in place so it doesn’t transfer. Then we’re going to fastidiously place our picture reference excessive and tape it down very gently with a couple of items of masking tape. Now, we’ll want to make use of a pointy device in an effort to place strain on all of the contour traces to mainly switch the PanPastel materials onto the drawing floor.

Transferring contour lines to drawing paper

Utilizing a lead holder with sharpened lead, I hint over all the contour traces I want to switch. I’m cautious to not place an excessive amount of strain on the pencil although as a result of I don’t need to create grooves within the completed floor. After we take away the picture reference, we will see that now we have a contour line drawing rather than our koi fish.

See additionally: Is It OK to Hint in Artwork?

Formulaic Coloured Pencil Functions

Now we’re prepared to start with coloured pencil functions. I’ll begin with the attention, build up a pure black. I’m not going to make use of the colour black in any respect. As a substitute, I’m utilizing a mixture of indigo blue and darkish umber. This creates a extra pure trying black that offers me full management over the colour temperature. If I need my black to look just a little cooler, I’ll add just a little bit extra of the indigo blue. If I need it to be hotter, I’ll simply add extra of the darkish umber.

Drawing the eye of the Koi fish

From this eye, I’m going to start out working outward, layering totally different varieties or totally different variations of oranges, yellow-oranges, and red-oranges – a little bit of white and grey as nicely.

As I work, I’m attempting to give you a system for a way I’m going to layer my coloured pencil functions. You may see I’ve acquired a broad vary of worth on this small little part. For probably the most half, I begin with simply a regular orange coloured pencil. Excessive, I’m including just a little bit extra of an earthier red-orange. This shade is terra cotta and it does make the worth darker, however not fairly darkish sufficient. I swap over to a 70% heat grey. This makes the worth darker, however just a little bit too cool. So add just a little little bit of darkish umber excessive.

That is usually how I prefer to work with a coloured pencil drawing. I’ll begin in a small space and give you a system of how I’m going to layer my pencils to construct up the colour and worth.

Drawing the head of the koi fish

The values on the top of the fish are a lot lighter. I’ll layer some lighter yellow-oranges, together with yellowed orange and a little bit of cream. Now, there are some reds right here too and I don’t need to lose these. So on this case, I’ll layer a little bit of poppy purple excessive in among the areas.

Keep in mind, we need to create selection within the shade. Orange is combined by combining yellows and reds, so it is smart to make use of yellows and reds in orange areas. Now that I’ve my system in place, I’ll merely work my manner out from this location.

As we work every space, we’ll modify the formulation that we use appropriately.

Working Up the Physique of the Koi Fish

This course of is gradual and tedious. Be certain to take your time and patiently layer your coloured pencil functions. Coloured pencils are at their greatest once they’re layered. This layering provides to the complexity of the colour, making your drawing look extra pure.

I’m making use of the coloured pencils in a manner that the appliance seems stable – in order that not one of the shade of the paper is displaying via. That is one other mistake individuals typically make with coloured pencils. They draw very, very mild. As a substitute, you need to attempt to construct as much as a heavy software. This doesn’t imply that you just begin with a heavy software, it simply signifies that you’ll slowly and step by step construct up a heavy software.

Incorporating a Colour Scheme

You may see right here within the shadowed space of the primary fin that we’re addressing that I’ve determined so as to add just a little little bit of purple to the combo. This shade is appropriately darkish purple and also you could be questioning why purple?

Drawing the first fin of the Koi fish

And that’s an important query.

Purple is used as a result of I’m attempting to use a particular shade scheme. A shade scheme is an outlined association of colours normally based mostly on their positioning on the colour wheel.

The colour scheme I’m attempting to use right here is named a secondary shade scheme. This scheme is made up of the colours of purple, orange and inexperienced. These colours are equidistant from one another on the colour wheel, making them a shade triad. I’m going to place hints of purple right here and there as a result of the paper we’re engaged on is inexperienced and the majority of the fish is orange. If we add bits of purple right here and there, that can preserve us in keeping with the secondary shade scheme. The secondary shade scheme will create extra pop and shade distinction which can make our drawing look a bit extra fascinating.

See additionally: Heat vs. Cool Grays

Shapes of Colour and Worth

I’m fastidiously paying particular consideration to the relationships of the shapes of shade and worth that I see and I’m attempting to imitate these as intently as potential.

Drawing the body of the Koi fish

As a substitute of pondering of drawing a fish, I’m pondering of solely shapes, colours and values. The fish will emerge from the paper so long as I get these proper.

Drawing the second fin of the fish

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On this picture, now we have the problem of making the phantasm of this fish being in water. There may be some distortion that occurs due to this. To create this phantasm, now we have to pay shut consideration to the relationships of colours, or extra particularly the shapes of colours and values that we’re attempting to copy in our drawing. That is fundamental to drawing and portray.

We see that now we have a group of darkish shapes proper subsequent to mild shapes and these are all distorted due to the water. What we truly see is a group of shapes of values and colours. If we will replicate these shapes of shade and worth on our drawing floor, then we’ll create a convincing phantasm that can look real looking. And that’s how abstraction results in realism.

Drawing the lower part of the body of the Koi fish

At the same time as we work as much as the tail finish of the fish, we’re sticking with the identical colours – simply the values will change from part to part. This implies we’ll must have some darker sections and a few lighter sections as nicely. We need to ensure that we proceed to create that selection within the oranges by including bits of purple and yellow-orange. I’m bringing in some jade inexperienced up right here on the finish of the fish as nicely.

Drawing the tail of the Koi

I’m going so as to add hints of the water across the edges of the fish in order that we will see a little bit of motion and to make the drawing a bit extra fascinating. You might fill out the remainder of the image aircraft if you want, or simply add just a little bit extra of this info.

Adding water ripples around the fish

I’m permitting extra of the paper shade to indicate via as a result of the colour is a darkish inexperienced and is smart for this explicit topic. I’m utilizing a little bit of slate grey so as to add just a little bit extra selection within the ripples. We’ll merely pull out a couple of strokes that mimic what we see within the reference.

We’ll do the identical on the left facet of the image aircraft with the slate grey. Now now we have some lighter values and a few center values for our water ripples. We have to add some darker values and we’ll begin with a little bit of darkish inexperienced. This inexperienced is cooler so it is smart so as to add it in among the water areas, however we have to make the values darker. To do that, we’ll add a little bit of indigo blue.

Ending Touches to the Drawing

Let’s add one other inexperienced – a yellow-green. Lime peel is used so as to add extra selection to our water areas and it nonetheless is smart with our secondary shade scheme. Then we’ll simply proceed understanding the areas that we need to embody in our drawing. It’s fully as much as you the way a lot you need to add or how a lot you need to pass over.

Adding the finishing touches to the drawing

Lastly, we have to add some sturdy highlights on prime so the water truly appears moist. Clearly, we’ll begin with a white coloured pencil and put heavy strain in order that it covers up the coloured pencil functions beneath.

The white coloured pencil does a reasonably good job of making these highlights, however there could be a few areas that you just need to make a bit stronger. To handle these areas, we will flip to a fabric referred to as gouache. Gouache is opaque watercolor and we will apply it straight excessive of a coloured pencil drawing. A really fine-tipped brush is used to use pure white gouache to a few chosen areas to make the highlights fairly a bit stronger. After these highlights are added, our coloured pencil drawing of a koi fish on toned inexperienced paper is now full.

Right here’s one other take a look at the finished drawing…

Colored pencil drawing of a Koi Fish

Koi Fish Drawing with Coloured Pencils – Conclusion

Drawing with coloured pencils requires persistence, however it’s price it. Work slowly and focus on the shapes of shade and worth that you just see. Match what you see as greatest as you may and a sensible picture will seem. Layer your coloured pencil functions to develop depth within the shade and revel in each step of the method.

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