Do you want to add rainbow colors to your hand lettering? Learn to create a rainbow watercolor background with brush pens you already have as watercolor! You can use any colors, but my favorite is the rainbow blends so that is what I will show you here.
I know watercolor is expensive and it can take some time to get the hang of it. If you have been hand lettering for any amount of time, I’m sure you already have brush pens. I look through my drawers of brush pens and see that I have quite a lot that I’ve accumulated over the years. Some of my brush pens are frayed but still have a lot of ink in them. Do you have frayed brush pens? You can use them as watercolor! Any water based pens will work well as watercolor including Crayola Broadline markers that are used in kindergarten.
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Rainbow Watercolor Background for Hand Lettering
First, let’s talk about what brush pens to use. Like I said, this is a great way to use old, frayed brush pens. I like to use my Crayola markers because I find that they are very vibrant. I also really like Karin Markers for this technique because they are very juicy. If you want to see a comparison of all of my brush pens using this technique, check out my YouTube video Watercolor Brush Pen Comparison.
You’ll want to scribble on a piece of plastic or on a palette with your brush pen, and then come in with a wet paint brush to pick up the ink. I don’t like using my brush pens on watercolor paper because they fray quickly. If you don’t know what paper is good for brush pens, check out my tutorial The Best Paper for Brush Lettering.
Next you use your paint brush on your watercolor paper to get any rainbow background you want. I like to do stripes or a classic rainbow wash background. You can do it around any shape as well. I like to make rainbow bookmarks and add a hand lettered quote.
Rainbow Art Examples
The background doesn’t even have to be rainbow. I also like to use similar colors to get a nice ombre background like this whale quote. I used all of my blue brush pens to get the nice ombre watercolor blend.
For the white lines I used washi tape that I will link to at the end of this post. I really like this technique where I use a stencil for the animal and letter inside. Here is another example with a different animal and a rainbow blend background instead of the blues.
I also like to do this technique around a silhouette. It really makes the silhouette stand out. I love rainbow colors as the background and black for the lettered quote. I felt like this design worked really well with this Eleanor Roosevelt quote.
Rainbow Skillshare class
Want to learn more specific techniques with blending rainbow backgrounds using brush pens? Check out my Skillshare class: 3 Rainbow Watercolor Backgrounds for Hand Lettering. You will leave with 3 specific projects you can easily create to add some color to your lettering. You can add your own personal style and create all kinds of lettering projects with colorful backgrounds. I will show you the details and techniques of how to get a smooth rainbow blend without having hard lines or turning everything brown.
I hope you try one of these and add your own personal touch to it. If you do and you share it on Instagram, I’d love to see it. Tag me @ensigninsights. If you are new to skillshare, you can use my link below to get two months free and you can take all of my classes plus any other class. Skillshare has all kinds of classes on hand lettering, art, watercolor, and even business, photography. Lots of things. I personally love and use skillshare and definitely recommend it.
Use my special link to get 2 months of Skillshare premium for free. You can take all of my classes plus any other class you want. And you can cancel at any time. I do make a small commission if you sign up, but it’s free for you so it’s a win-win. 🙂
Supplies needed for Rainbow Watercolor Backgrounds Skillshare class:
-Brush Markers (anything waterbased)
-Watercolor paper (I use Canson Watercolor paper)
-Paint brush or waterbrush (I use a Pentel Aquash waterbrush)
-Palette or plastic bag
-Washi tape (I love this thin washi tape)
Lastly, if you would like to see this video tutorial on YouTube, check it out here:
Did you enjoy this tutorial? Let me know if you’ve tried this! You may also enjoy another fun thing you can do with your brush pens in my tutorial Faux Calligraphy with Brush Pens.