90
If you don’t have
fancy natural sponges
on hand, use
an old sponge
from your kitchen!
~
R
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20
Tools and materials
Watercolors or acrylics
• Watercolor paper
• Watercolor palette
• Water
• Brushes
• Natural sponges
or old kitchen sponge
You can’t beat beautiful natural sponges for making some
great textural e ects. You can buy these amazing tools in
sets at your local art supply store or you can get some really
ne, large varieties at your beauty and bath shops and even
at health food stores.
Sponge the Paint
Tool
s
an
• Water
c
• Water
c
• Water
c
W
ate
r
• Bru
s
h
e
• Natur
a
or old
k
90
91
Start with a dry sheet of watercolor
paper or a dry color wash in a light
to mid value.
Mix up a palette of darker, slightly
thick paint.
I like to mix my own colors;
above, I am making a purplish-
blue color by mixing in a bit
of Alizarin Crimson with my
Ultramarine Blue. I don’t mix them
thoroughly —I want all kinds of
tones and shades on the tips of
my sponge.
—continued
Sponging is simple, but to really
get e ects that are worth the
e ort, you must pay attention to
how wet your paper is and how
liquid your paint is. This might
take a little practice.
If everything is too wet, you’ll end up
with some gentle tonal blends and no
texture. If everything is too dry, your
colors might not bleed together and
you’ll end up with a very busy, kind
of prickly texture.
As graphic designers, we set type
on our pages, and busy textures can
be di cult to work with. Spend a
little time to experiment and get the
technique down; it’s worth it in the
long run.
20:   
UNFOLD YOURSELF
a journal of discovery
Once you’ve created several pages of
sponged color, you’ll fi nd myriad ways
to use them in your design work.
92
Lightly dip a natural sponge into
the thick paint and “stamp” gently
on the paper.
Sometimes I make single, distinct
stamps, but other times I move
around the whole wash and
overlap marks to make a texture.
Tip: Sometimes you’ll want a
softer, more subtle e ect.
In that case, start with a slightly
damp sheet of watercolor paper
or a slightly damp watercolor
wash. Make your paint a little
thinner and lighter in value. This
variation allows the colors to
bleed together slightly and gives
a more blended texture.
Also see Chapter 18 on pouring
watercolor where you can get a
lovely graduated blend
between the colors.
Let your fi rst layer dry. Then repeat the process with
layers of di erent values or colors to make a beautiful
multidimensional e ect.
20:   
Bon Voyage
Pa rty!
Join us to wish “bon voyage”
to
Jered & Larissa
as they head to Brazil
for a three-month adventure!
Friday, September 25
9 midnight
%DNHUVÀHOG
South Lake Tahoe
RSVP
carmen@comcast.com
93
One of my favorite childhood memories
is standing in the market in Athens
with my mother and two li le sisters,
buying sponges from a delightful old
Greek gentleman who looked like he
was in the movies white hair,
large mustache, and of course
the de rigueur Greek
shing hat.
~
C
The Crest
gear for the serious climber
Ropes
Ascenders
Carabiners
Camming devices
June 12–28
th
1267 Main Street
South Lake Tahoe
510.433.7856
www.TheCrestGear.com
20% off all
%$*,$
ACTIVE BOARD WEAR
For this hang tag,
in InDesign I overlaid a page of
sponge texture onto a soft water-
color wash so I could play with the
color interaction and placement,
giving me a great combination
of sky and water.
In Photoshop, I layered a mountain photo
on top of a layer of the sponge texture and
applied “Linear Light” from the Layer/
Modes pop-up menu. In InDesign, I lowered
the opacity of the sponge texture on the
rest of the ad to 20 percent.
20:   

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