Artists use colored pencils in a variety of ways. Many use them in mixed media with watercolor or ink, others layer them to create dense color saturated images. I like to use colored pencils with odorlessmineral spirits (OMS), applied with a cotton swab, to create vibrantly colored, painterly drawings.
The materials needed are colored pencils, OMS, cotton swabs and Bristol paper. The Bristol paper is a good choice as it is smooth without any texture.
I start out by doing a sketch of my subject matter using colored pencils to lightly block in my composition. As I build up the color I lightly rub the surface with mineral spirits on a cotton swab. The mineral spirits act to break down the waxy binder in the colored pencil and create a vibrant and painterly image. I keeping layering the colored pencil and ODM until the drawing is complete. Here are a few recent examples of my work using this interesting technique.
I would like to thank my friend Josh Yavelberg for introducing me to this way of working!