How to Draw With Black And Red Ink

Articles & Drawing Tutorials, Drawing With Ink

Black ink is an all-sufficient medium; it is elegant and laconic by itself. It seems, there is no need for anything else, right?

But sometimes you just want color. Does this mean that you should put aside ink and pens, and start a new art with paints?

The answer is no. You can use inks and ink pens of different colors or add bright strokes to your originally black and white drawing. It is fun, and today I’ll show you a way how to do it!

We’ll be creating a beautiful rose artwork. 🙂

The Art Supplies

I’ll be using several pens:

  • Faber-Castell Pitt artist pen number F (F equals 0.5 mm) of the black color
  • Faber-Castell Pitt artist pen number S (S equals 0.3 mm) of the black color
  • Faber-Castell Grip Fineline pen 0.4 of the bright red color
  • Faber-Castell Grip Fineline pen 0.4 of the crimson color

You can use any inks or pens you have 🙂

The Technique Explanation

The technique that I’ve chosen for this drawing is dotwork (or stippling). If you are not familiar with it, please check out this post:

Introduction to Dotwork (Stippling) Technique in Ink

The point is in drawing dots – it’s that simple. So just set aside some time for an artistic meditation! 🙂

Before we start, let’s try the tools.

I draw four samples:

The sample number one is created with the 0.3 (S) pen of the black color,

the sample number two – with the 0.5 (F) pen of the black color,

the sample number three – with the 0.4 pen of the bright red color,

the sample number four – with the 0.4 pen of the darker, crimson color.

You can clearly see how differently these samples look. The wider the tip of your pen, the more intense the dotwork becomes; it feels heavy and a bit rough. A stippling made with a fine-tip pen looks much more refined.

You may also pay attention to the color saturation level – when the dots locate close to each other and the gaps between them are small, we suppose that we see a large amount of the particular color – it looks solid.

These trick are simple yet powerful, and very soon I’ll show you how to apply them to achieve the great results.

The Process Of Drawing

Step 1

I begin with a pencil underdrawing. It is easier to create a confident and detailed artwork when you already have all necessary contours in place. Just keep the lines light! 🙂

Step 2

With the 0.3 ink liner (black), I add dots to the shady places in the petals.

I separate the elements of the flower one from another and mark the external contour of the rose. 

Step 3

I add the crimson color. The dots may locate in the gaps between the existing black ones or overlap them a bit. 

Step 4

I continue with the previous action, adding more crimson dots, especially to the shadows between the petals and the contours.

Step 5

I finish applying the crimson color.

It is important to work gradually – there is no need to rush.

Step 6

I add the bright red color to the highlights (where the petals are bending) and near the tips of the petals.

Step 7


Step 8

With the 0.3 (S) liner (black), I create shadows and mark the details of the leaf. 

Step 9

I work on the second leaf, using the same 0.3 black ink liner.

Step 10

I increase the contrast in my drawing by adding dots to the shadows (paying particular attention to the petals). 0.3 ink liner of the black color is a great tool for that.

Step 11

With the 0.5 (F) liner, I add some bigger black dots. 

Step 12

I evaluate my drawing and add some more 0.5 black dots. It’s complete! 😀 

Here I have a slideshow of steps so you can observe the process.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I hope you like this tutorial was interesting and useful for you. Thank you for taking the time to join me in the creative adventure! 🙂

Please share this post with your art friends – drawing together is much more fun! 😉

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