HOWTO: Copic Marker coloring 101

I spent Saturday up in Albany at a Splitcoast stamp camp that Lisa Moore coordinated.  It was so much fun meeting these girls in person, and sharing our stamped creations.  I had the honor of showing many of the girls WHY I love Copic Markers so much.  I thought I’d post a quick pictorial here as well.

First, whenever I color with markers, I get that uni-color, ‘my 5 year old’s artwork is progressing’ look.  NOT with Copic Markers.

ONE – they don’t show brushstrokes.

TWO – Infinitely blendable, keep going and going until it’s done

THREE – you can lift ‘oopsies’ and lighten areas easilly with the blender pen

Here is an example.  This image is stamped with Brilliance ink (this ink is a MUST as it won’t move when coloring with these markers, unlike Stazon which will wipe clean off!).  Follow each step, because you won’t see how great they are until the end.  And don’t laugh at my coloring.  I’m putting Mr. Bunny under a microscope, blowing up an image that is approx. 1" x 1 1/2" so that you can see details.  Means you can also see that I’m human.  OK?


Here is the heretofore ‘terrifying’ image, that needs coloring.  Before Copics, NOTHING would really do it justice.

And here are the colors I am using:



OK, step one, color over all the areas with the lightest shade you have.  I used a light yellow for the grass and light brown for the bunny.  Not a single brushstroke is visible on that bunny.  Amazing!


Now, take your second darker color and thread it into the grasses, and color along the outside of the bunny, where a shadow might possibly be.  Let the stamp guide you.  You don’t need to think about light sources or anything.  Just add color and follow the stamp lines.


OK, now we are adding in the darkest colors.  I applied these in the areas that seemed to have the most shadow and along the bottom of the image only.  Less is more.


Now it’s time to go back to those first two lightest colors you used.  I take the light yellow marker and start drawing it in small circles over the grasses.    Push the dark shading up with your penstrokes.  Pull the ink where you want it to go.  Keep doing circles until the stamp image is more visible under the dark shadows that you’ve added.

I don’t use the colorless blender in this step, because on this image, I don’t want to remove color.  Simply using the lightest color makes it all look great and blended.

The same for the bunny, but with the light brown instead.

And when I need to ‘clean up’ the image a bit, I can pull out the color less blender and mark the tip of his cute bunny nose.  It removed the brown ink and allowed me to put a little pink in its place.  Looks like I need to do that a bit on his ears.  You get the idea!

Try Copic Sketch markers.  322 colors of absolute bliss.  There is more information at


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