How to Blend Oil Pastels or Markers in a Zen Doodle Drawing

Here at ArtistsNetwork, we’ve been sharing Zen doodle techniques and tangled art, including how to draw tangles and doodling ideas. If you’re new to the style, let me explain: Zentangle® is a way of drawing geometrical or organic patterns that weave throughout each other. In its most authentic practice, artists try to reach a Zen-like meditative state while drawing, which is what makes Zentangle stand out from other forms of art.

While some artists prefer to keep their doodle art in its purest form of black-and-white drawings, others like to spice it up with color. That’s where Tiffany Lovering comes in. Below, you’ll find her advice for using oil pastels or markers–yes, markers!–to blend color for new effects.

Oil pastel Zendoodles by Tiffany Lovering | ArtistsNetwork.com

Zen Doodle art (oil pastel) by Tiffany Lovering (Pin this!)

How to Add Color to Zen Doodles

by Tiffany Lovering

Oil Pastel Tips: To color with oil pastels, choose two different shades of the same color. Take the darker shade and make a mark of color. Next take the lighter shade and make a mark near the darker color. Take a blending stump and move it in a circular motion to blend the colors together over the entire area. Your hands will quickly get dirty with pastel residue when you blend. Keep some baby wipes nearby to wipe your hands when you switch colors. Avoid using your hand to wipe away residue because this will smear the color. Instead, shake the paper over a garbage can, and the residue should come off.

How to blend markers | ArtistsNetwork.com

“This process of blending Sharpies can be somewhat time-consuming,” Tiffany advises, “so it’s recommended for small areas. This method is great for accenting focal patterns.”

Marker Techniques: To blend Sharpie markers, use new or almost new markers because these have the most ink. Choose two shades of the same color. Draw a line of the darker color. While the ink is still wet, take the lighter shade and, using a circular motion, color over the darker color and right next to the darker color. This will allow the marker to pick up the darker color and blend beyond that line with the lighter shade. Next, still using the lighter color and a circular motion, blend to the outer edge without touching the darker color. This will create a three-color blended effect. ~Tiffany

Get your Zen Doodle Unleashed: Love to Color collection today and learn how to draw patterns, add color to doodle art, and also blend color with watercolor and colored pencils. You’ll discover basic patterns as well as take on advanced tangles, all at your own pace. Tiffany’s coloring book for adults, Love to Color: Petals, Patterns and Doodles Coloring Pages is part of this exclusive collection. Cool bonus: this kit even comes with a set of Chameleon tone-changing markers. They make it even easier to blend colors into beautiful gradients that will give your drawings dimension.

Have fun,
Cherie
Cherie Haas, online editor
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The Zentangle® Method was created by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. Zentangle® is a registered trademark of Zentangle, Inc.

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