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What is feather blending?

What is feather blending?

Feather blending technique is good to use when you’re trying to blend very different colours that would turn into a colour mess if you tried to use the basic blending technique. This method is ideal for colouring long, slightly narrow areas like petals. Feather Blending works best with the brush nib from a Sketch or Ciao.

 

Step 1: Start with two lighter colours that are in very different colour families (colours that end in a 0, 1, or 2 will be easiest). We are using RV02 and B02 as our example. Work in a long, thin area that is not too large.

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Step 2: Apply the first colour about 3/4 of the way through the area. Use the side of the brush and lift up at the end of each stroke so you have denser colour at the start and less colour at the end of each stroke.
Note:
the same principle applies when using a Copic marker for this technique, except you won’t have the distinct brush-stroke. Work in the same direction, but layer enough colour so streaks at the base are lost and they mostly disappear in the middle. 

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Step 3:

Add your second colour from the opposite direction using the same techniques as step 2.

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Step 4:

Repeat step 3. Go back with another light layer of the first colour, then back with the second, then back with the first until it looks good. Every now and then let the paper dry so you can see the true effect. If the paper gets too saturated, you may see splotchiness. If you see ink glistening on the surface, let your paper dry a bit (not all the way, just enough so you’re not going outside your lines). Your colours will gradually get darker. If you have done this technique correctly you should lose most of the individual streaks unless you look closely. On smaller areas you won’t have to repeat as often to make the colours look smooth. 

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Common Feathering Problems

People frequently try this blending technique with only the tip of the brush which prevents the individual strokes from disappearing. The solution is to use the side of the brush and add more light layers. Lots of very light layers overlapping are the key to making your blend look correct.

Another common problem is that the two colours don’t overlap enough. Be sure to allow plenty of room for colours to overlap.

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