Do you have the tendency to push a little too hard on your paper when working with colour pencil? If you do, you’ll know the more you smoosh your pencil into the toothy groove of the paper, the more difficult it is to keep adding layers of colour. It’s like pushing send on a email or text when you’re angry…instant regret.
What about when you try to add white highlights to your work? Do you find you can’t erase the paper back to pure white? Trying to create fine white details like whiskers, bubbles or pearly white teeth can be particularly hard when working with such small areas of paper.
Now there’s hope. If you are struggling with issues like these, you should consider the Colored Pencil Touch-Up Texture and Titanium White powder.
TOUCH-UP TEXTURE AND TITANIUM WHITE POWDER - WHAT ARE THEY?
Colored Pencil Touch-Up Texture
This transparent liquid (that looks like nail polish), can be precisely applied to small areas of your colour pencil work where the surface has lost its tooth. Once dry, it hardens to provides texture, allowing you continue adding layers or bright highlights.
Colored Pencil Titanium White powder
This suspicious looking white stuff is effectively a powder version of a white coloured pencil. No doubt there is more proprietary goodness inside than just a crushed up pencil, but mixed with the Touch-Up Texture, this opaque blend allows you to create the brightest, most opaque white possible in your work.
Some artists use white paint, gel pens etc on their work. While those will yield results, these products are specifically made for colour pencil work, allowing you to have a truly archival piece when you’re done.
Below I demonstrate how to use them. If you want a summary of my pros and cons, skip to the end.
The brand is called Brush and Pencil by Alyona Nickelsen. Alyona is a well-known and highly experienced pencil artist. She has examined the traditional methods artists use when working with coloured pencil and created new and innovative products to help artists achieve their goals. These are products made for artists by an artist.
Unlike other kinds of white powder, this stuff is relatively affordable. The cost for each product in Australia is $21.95. If you decide to purchase the Titanium White powder, be sure that you are ordering that and NOT the Powder Blender.
You can buy these products online at the official website https://brushandpencil.com. There appears to be limited distribution worldwide, likely because of the kaboom-like flammable qualities of the Touch-Up Texture.
Archival, non-toxic. My observation is that they’re odourless.
I’ve used these products on a few pieces, but here I demonstrate it’s use on my recent colour pencil drawing of ‘Noosa Heads Queensland’.
Here I’ve zoomed in on the small section we will be working with. Here I want to add some wave detail.
HOW TO USE
If you wish to add white highlights to your work, use the following steps. If you are using Touch-Up Texture just to add texture to your work without the Titanium White, just follow Steps 3, 5 and 6.
Step 1: Get a mixing palette
As it dries quickly, you only need to mix small amounts at a time. I suggest using something small for the mixing. Here I have used an empty tea light candle holder. The lid from an empty gin bottle would work equally well. (You will have emptied the gin in the time it takes for your order to arrive)
Step 2: Add Titanium White powder
To stop too much powder escaping the container, I only opened the sticker partially. Unless you want to look like you walked out of a flour mill, I’d recommend you do the same.
You can see I’ve tapped out the smallest amount of powder into my mixing palette. The concoction you are about to make dries quickly so there i no need to pour more than a pinch.
Step 3: Shake Touch-Up Texture
Shake the bottle of touch-up texture vigorously!
Keep shaking. Make sure most of the white stuff is no longer pooling in the base. The below photo shows how the base should look once shaken up.
Step 4: Add liquid to powder
Add a few drops of touch-up liquid to the powder. Remember we are working in small batches, just a few drops are needed. Try to drop the liquid away from the powder so you don’t transfer powder back into the bottle.
Use a paint brush to mix.
Here it is partially mixed. Like gravy, it starts off lumpy. Keep mixing!
Mix until it is the consistency of thick milk or runny paint.
If it dries out as you use it on your work, just add another drop or two of the liquid to revive it.
Step 5: Paint on with a brush
Apply the mix to your work with a paint brush. As I was working on fine detail I used a thin brush.
If you make a mistake and it is still wet, simply lift the wet mix off with a dab of a tissue or your finger. If you are working on dark paper, it may not lift completely.
Step 6: Let dry completely
Let it dry on your work COMPLETELY. Once dry, you can work back over the area with pencils if necessary.
You can add as many layers of the mix as you like.
Here are a few more examples of the products in action. You can see the difference between a normal colour pencil (Faber Castell Polychromos) and the Brush and Pencil products. You can keep layering as often as required.
‘Depth’ by Candace Slager. Here I used the white for a bubble effect.
‘Make it happen’ by Candace Slager. Here a few dots were added around the car for reflective glare highlights.
Colored Pencil Touch-Up Texture and Titanium White powder are ideal for intermediate and experienced drawing artists. They are perfect for anyone who is frustrated with traditional methods for preserving or adding white highlights or anyone who wants to add more layers to their work, including adding lighter colours over dark.
Are these products essential? No but they sure do make life easier.
- Creating fine detail and highlights.
- Creating extra tooth and covering mistakes.
- You only need a small amount. I can’t see myself running out any time soon.
- Easy to use.
- Not good for covering large areas.
- The mixture dries quickly.
- If you also own the Brush and Pencil Powder Blender product, it’s easy to confuse it with the Titanium White powder as the containers are too similar.
Things to note
- Don’t try and use it to cover large areas.
- Don’t mix the powder up with water. The touch-up texture is intended to be used with the powder to ensure the white pencil sticks and doesn’t flake off.
If you have any questions about this product or my artwork, feel free to contact me.
I also have a review on the Baohong watercolour paper becoming more and more popular with artists. Read about it here.
*Disclaimer: this review is not sponsored and contains no affiliate links. I purchased this product. All opinions are solely my own and based on my experience and techniques. Always do your own research before purchasing any product.