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Studio Portraits in Ink Wash

Ink Wash Portrait

Illustration: Brown ink wash and graphite

Today I tried Higgins “dye-based drawing ink” in washes on Fabriano 140 lb Cold Press watercolor paper to create some portraits in the studio. I used a watercolor brush (now an ink brush!) to do the washes, and filled in some contrasts with a Platinum Carbon fountain pen with waterproof black ink. The results seem promising enough that I’m eager to try something similar again.

Working in one color–in this case, brown ink–and trying to distinguish different values (or degrees of contrast)–seems easier than managing all the interactions between paper, water, and different colors involved in doing a watercolor portrait.  This paper, moreover, seemed well-suited to the ink washes.

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