More Playing with Inktense Pencils

After finishing my little Chickadees, I decided I needed to see what else I could do with my Inktense colored pencils. I sold out of my covered mini photo albums, or brag books in early December, and really need to get more made. The covers were made using sunprinted fabric or photo transfers along with whatever dyed or painted fabric I thought looked good with the focus piece.

Brag book- Set of 4

This photo above shows a little group of the books I finished last fall. I try to use my best sunprints for the focus fabrics on the fronts of the covers, but I have LOTS of prints that just don’t have that WOW factor…. They are either not very sharp, or otherwise pretty boring.

Cosmos Sunprint

This photo shows one of the “wishy-washy” sunprints. The fern printed OK, but the Cosmos flowers are pretty blurry. Also, there isn’t much contrast in the piece of fabric. I could jazz it up with stitching and thread, but decided this was one good “victim” to try my pencils on.

Cosmos with Pencil

Above is another sunprint from a similar batch after I outlined the flowers and centers with the Inktnse pencils. I used Fuchsia for the petals, and Sun Yellow for the centers. I lightly dampened the fabric just were I wanted to add color with water, and added the pencil. Since I love all things sparkly, I decided to see what happened if I used my iridescent medium over the pencil to finish things. I used very watered down medium over the flowers, then added some thicker pearl to the flower centers, dotted over the yellow. With the water just where I wanted the color, and careful placement of the medium, I got pretty sharp lines.

Maple Sunprints

This is a sunprint of a couple of Maple leaves on nearly black paint.

Penciled Maples

This photo above doesn’t do justice to these leaves, but here is what happened when I drew the veins in the Maple leaf sunprints done on black. I started by just adding water over the pencil, but since I was playing with sparkle, I decided to add some to these… The effect gives an impression of the sun shimmering off snow on a very cold day. I kept the pearlescent medium just in the leaf areas. The actual look is much softer than the photo.

Ginkgo Sunprint

Here is one of my Ginkgo leaf sunprints on black…..

Ginkgo Cover

I tried a similar idea with the Ginkgo sunprints. I added Fuschia colored veins with the pencil, then used the pearlescent medium that wasn’t as watered down as on the Maples. The thicker layer of paint nearly covers the color completely. The camera is also picking up a lot of shine…. in real life, at different angles, you see varying amounts of the pencil color.

Fern with Flowers

Here is what I ended up with when I dipped the Violet pencil in water, then scribbled over a small flower stamp I have. The stamp gave a faint outline that I then traced over to get more color. I again used very watered down pearlescent medium over the pencil, then thick medium for the centers. The flower centers are sparkly even though they look white here.

Album Covers in Progress

This photo shows some more of the sunprints I played with. A  couple more on black, where I added color, and other sunprints I added little bits of color to. I have used some of last Spring’s dyed fabric for the remainder of each cover. The pieces used here are pretty bright and pull colors from the pencil I added. It will be fun to see how these look when I get them finished.

One thing I discovered while starting these, is that the little sketch book I made and used for my bird sketches will fit just right in one of these covers. I didn’t really pay attention to the size of the book I was making- I just cut the heavy drawing paper I had and folded, but the pages ended up being 4″x6″… just the size of the photos that fit in the albums that go in these covers.

So far this year is beginning much more creatively than the past couple…. Now to get these albums  finished so I can list them in my Andrus Gardens Studio on ArtFire.


I am a former textile artist and new pattern designer with a degree in horticulture, wishing to share my love of nature, flowers and gardens with everyone through my photos, sunprinted fabrics, and now pattern designs. Chronic Lyme Disease has caused major changes to the direction my life. I have to limit the amount of time spent digging in my gardens, and quilting has become more difficult. I discovered pattern design as a way to get art back into my life. I now use my gardens and photos to inspire designs that can be used on fabrics and print on demand items.

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7 comments on “More Playing with Inktense Pencils
  1. Maria Elkins says:

    Wow! These are really terrific. I like the pearlescent medium on them. Thanks so much for sharing 🙂

  2. Wen Redmond says:

    These are terrific. I like the sun prints, aren’t they such fun.

  3. Very pretty. i especially like the ones on the black — you really made them pop!

  4. Sandy Corry says:

    What great results. I love the way that something that is discarded or considered just not “good enough” can be reconstructed into something of great value. Sounds like a life-lesson! Thank you SO much for sharing your journey.

  5. Sue… this is awesome!! I’d say yu are onto something here!
    Thank you for sharing.

  6. Sari Shifrin says:

    Sue…I love the effects you are achieving. Thank you for sharing your technique and your beautiful results!

  7. kim says:

    can u instruct me on how to get the FAMM badge on my site? I do love the inktense as well, although my level of work isn’t up to your par