When I buy a new color of Copic marker, the first thing I do (besides holding it lovingly in my hands and promising to never let it be lonely again) *yep, obsessed* — is to update my hand color chart. This is such a great reference for a quick shot at all the colors you have to work with. Print it out (laser printer or color laser copier *NOT* inkjet) on the kind of paper you use for coloring, and color it in by hand with the markers that you own for a more accurate representation of how they will look when you use them:
You can download a blank chart here: http://copicmarker.com/wp-content/themes/copicmarker/images/library_blank.jpg
I'm constantly updating my personal swatch book of colors with stamped images and working my way through all of the color families. This is one of my favorite things to do when I'm on a plane, or (as the case was yesterday) at the DMV or waiting for any other appointment. My marker tote and swatch book are my constant companions these days.
Hmmmm, YR14 is such a puzzlement… ok, back to organizing.
By the way, whenever I list a color combination, whatever color I have listed first or is at the top of the stack is the color I put down as my base color, then I blend in the second color, third color, etc. I always go back and blend with the first to give a representation of how I use the colors.
So that gives me a general overview, and then within the color family. But there is so much more that I want to experiment with and document for my swatch book, so off to Microsoft Word I went…
I was originally inspired by a post nearly a year ago by Marianne Walker, where she showed two small charts of color combinations for E33. That thing just blew my mind!! So I set out to create a system for documenting, inventorying and creating a monster swatch book that would capture this type of information and inspire me to try, and document color combinations that I like. I am NOT NEAT when I do this. It isn't artwork, folks – it's *swatches*. So that said, here is the result:
Download Ink Combination Chart (6 Megabyte file, 319 pages!)
I created this Microsoft Word document and saved it to be compatible with Word 2003-2007, so hopefully it will work for many people. The margins are set to .5" all around. I print this out, 4 sheets to a page, for a nice quarter sheet display that can easilly fit into my swatch binder. You could print out one sheet to a page if you wish. Just realize that there are 319 pages if you choose to do it this way.
Print it out on paper that you use for coloring. I know it is painful to run that type of paper through a laser printer or copier, but it will give you results that are typical for the paper that you work on most frequently when coloring. It is a worthwhile investment IMHO. I don't own every color, but someday…
The color 'rules' are those you find on sites such as Adobe's Kuler.com. I use RGB approximations of the Copic colors to input as my base color and then see what the rules give me. From those results – I compare to my Copic swatches and fill in the information. This is a very subjective process (but it is fun, for me) *again, obsessed*.
I downloaded the RGB approximations swatch file (.aco) from .Too's website in Japan. The translated version is kind of funny to read. Google does a number on the native Japanese. But the free download links are there. This works for Adobe Photoshop CS3. I don't know if it will work for Elements. Darling reader, please read your manual. At some point, certainly, I will have input all of that lovely information into my spreadsheet – and I will share it. But for now download and see what happens…or just fiddle with the color wheel until you get something that looks close – and see what you get.
Otherwise, I'm about to hit the road.
I'm teaching a Copic 101 tomorrow night at Wiggles & Giggles in Wethersfield, CT.
And on Friday I am jumping on a plane to Maryland. I will be teaching three workshops on Saturday at The Queen's Ink in Savage, MD, followed by a full-day Copic Certification Class on Sunday at the same location. At this writing, there were THREE seats available. Call Kris to register! 541-684-0013, ext. 1.