Basic techniques with our Watercolour Marker

The new Albrecht Dürer artists’ watercolour marker is the modern definition of watercolour painting: a high quality drawing instrument that supports spontaneous sketching as well as painting in watercolours. The water-based ink is always ready and is excellently usable with water.

Quality is our maxim. So the artists’ watercolour marker stands out because of high pigmentation and high lightfastness. The colours follow the Faber-Castell colour system and are therefore reliably combinable with other artist pencils from Faber-Castell. The versatility of the Albrecht Dürer watercolour marker convinces above all on its travels. Whoever likes to capture impressions while on the road will reach for this pen with relish. Two nibs – a brush nib and a fibre-tip – offer the artist flexibility in the personal drawing style. The ink lends drawings and preliminary sketches a high dynamic that is intensified through painting with water.

The correct paper

Hand leafing through a colouring book.


Good drawing results depend on the paper being used. For an optimal result we recommend watercolour paper from Canson Montval (300g/sqm – fine grained) and Hahnemühle Fine Art Britannia (300g/qm hot pressed). These watercolour papers consist of cellulose paper and support good water solubility of the ink. Watercolour pads have glued edges which allows the paper to be smoothed out. Individual sheets should be fixed onto an underlay before painting with watercolours. The higher the grammage of a piece of paper, the better the flatness for painting with watercolours. The Albrecht Dürer artists’ watercolour marker does not bleed through the paper, so both sides of the paper of a sketchbook are usable.

Mixing colours

Yellow and green colour painted in a squared box next to blue and green colour in a box.
Mixing colours without water
Layering colours dry on each other produces colour blends with sharp edges and shapes. The transparency of the ink lets layered colour surfaces shine through and thus allows for extravagantly mixed colour tones. Depending on the order in which the colours are overlapped, various mixed colours can be produced. Thus, yellow over blue produces something different than blue over yellow.
Mixing different shades of green with the watertank brush.
Mixing colours with water
With brush and water layered colours can run into each other and mix. The edges and lines of the drawing blend when get watercoloured and leave picturesque surfaces with a typical watercolour appearance.
Mixing a colour shade on one paper and using this colour for another picture.
Dissolve colours on separate paper
When doing watercolouring it is possible that a colour does not have quite the intensity or depth that one would wish for. No problem, because extra colour is quickly dissolved on a separate piece of paper and can easily be worked in while still on the moist surface.


A blue AD watercolour marker getting wiped up colour of its nib with a paper towel.
If the nib is dirty and shows residues of other colours, it can be easily cleaned with a paper towel.


Cross-hatchings in blue, green and yellow.
Cross hatchings

The light intensity of objects are artistically defined when hatchings are used. Line strength, gaps and dynamic determine the appearance. The closer the lines are to each other, the darker and more intense the colour effect is

For cross hatching, hatchings are overlapped at different angles. Various mixed tones and shadings define the thickness, colour and cromacity of the cross hatchings.

Formative hatchings in blue colour.
Formative hatchings
Formative hatchings take on the individual contour of the object; i.e. the lines run parallel to it.

Watercolour techniques

The nib of a watertank brush mixing yellow and blue colours.
Colour gradients

The Albrecht Dürer watercolour markers give the artist the freedom to use any current watercolour techniques. The ink pigments dissolve and distribute themselves perfectly in the water film and change surfaces and lines in no time into impressive watercolour pictures.

Applying two colours on areas adjacent to each other and then blending the two areas with a wet brush in the middle will produce flowing bleed patterns and brilliant mixed colours.

A hand spraying water on a blue and green colour field with a misting bottle.
Misting bottle
Extravagant effects as well as interesting mixed tones are created when spraying a drawing with water from a spray bottle. The selectively dissolving colours provide immediate spontaneity and vitality in the picture.
Mixing different shades of green with the watertank brush.
Dissolve dried colour
Lovely watercolour effects can also be produced by using a wet brush to redissolve colours that have dried slightly.
A hand mixing green and yellow colours with the watertank brush.
Here, several thin colour layers are laid on top of eachother. Each layer of colour applied must dry before overlapping with the next colour. As watercolours are transparent, the overlapping colours mix visually to create new colours. Painting with glazes gives a picture layer-for-layer depth.
A blue watercolour marker mixing colour wet in wet.

Wet in wet

Every watercolour painter knows and loves this painting technique. First the paper is well dampened with clear water. The colour pigments are dissolved on the paper when the drawing starts and immediately they spread out across the wet surface.
A salt sprinkler sprinkling salt on a blue blotch of paint.
Salt technique
The salt technique provides wonderful textures. Sprinkled on a wet picture, coarse salt intensely absorbs water and colour and is easily removed after complete drying.
Warping green colour with the watertank brush.
Partially blurring colours

Special techniques with the water brush

The Faber-Castell water brush is the perfect companion for the artists’ watercolour marker to realise all the techniques described when on the go. Additionally pictures can become lively and individual with further techniques.

An exciting appearance occurs together with undissolved and dissolved ink. Partially liquidized colour can be blurred with the water brush and lends the picture a special dynamic.

Granulation with the watertank brush in blue colour.

Dry-brush-technique (Granulation)

The paint is applied superficially using an almost dry brush, the pigments remain on the top layer of the paper grain. A structured paper surface is an advantage for this technique.
A hand scratching blue colour with the cap of the watertank brush.
Scraping technique
With the v-shaped side of the cap, the dissolved paint can be moved easily over the paper to create unusual structures like with a paint knife.
Scratching blue splotches of paint with the watertank brush cap.
Scratching technique
The integrated grooves on the cap are perfect for creative effects: The damp paper can be scored to add strong highlights to the picture with line patterns in various forms.


A hand painting lines on a paper with a pencil and blue colour.

The masking fluid protects areas which should stay the same colour as the paper. Using a brush, it is applied at the very start to parts of the picture which should be protected and must then be left to dry. After drawing and painting, carefully remove the masking fluid with a finger once the picture is dry.

A hand pointing at one point of a picture, where you can see a fence on a grassy area.
Art supply shops offer white and blue masking liquid. The difference lies only in the better visibility of masked surfaces. It is thus a matter of pure taste as to which masking colour the artist prefers.

Mixed media

Painting of a man playing kontrabass

Pitt Artist Pen

By combining the Albrecht Dürer artists’ watercolour marker and other painting and drawing media, amazing picture compositions develop.

The lightfast India ink pen Pitt Artist Pen is perfect for setting clear lines and accents on dried watercolours. Since the ink is waterproof, sketches prepared with Pitt Artist Pen remain clear upon subsequent watercolour painting. The Pitt Artist Pen fineliner in different nib sizes and the Pitt Artist Pen brush with its flexible brush nib enrich the drawing style of any Artist.

Sketch of young man playing trumpet.
Castell 9000 Graphite Pencils
Watercolour pictures combined with graphite pencils impress with a classy appearance. The drawing lends the watercolour picture “elegance and subtle vibrancy” when set on a dried watercolour.