How To Blend Colored Pencils and Crayons for Beginning Artists

Example of blended crayons and colored pencils

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Floral design with blended color pencilsMorning glory flowers done with colored pencil and blended with mineral spiritsPlease refer to the labels on the photo. One part is colored pencil, the other is crayon. These both can be made darker by layering on more color.
Floral design with blended color pencils
Floral design with blended color pencils
Morning glory flowers done with colored pencil and blended with mineral spirits
Morning glory flowers done with colored pencil and blended with mineral spirits
Please refer to the labels on the photo. One part is colored pencil, the other is crayon. These both can be made darker by layering on more color.
Please refer to the labels on the photo. One part is colored pencil, the other is crayon. These both can be made darker by layering on more color.

Adults, Art and Crayons, a perfect mix!

Everyone that is interested in, or may have had art lessons is used to the idea of colored pencils being used in art, but what about crayons? I had never related children's crayons to art in any way, until tonight. I was in my art room and was playing around with colored pencils, blending them with a Q-tip and some odorless mineral spirits, which works great. While doing this, I thought of regular kids crayons, and thought I might as well give it a try. Much to my surprise, the crayons blended beautifully with the same tools (Q-tip and mineral spirits)!

I decided to share this inexpensive idea with you. Of course, this isn't a medium you would do fine art with, but it works great if you want to do some color studies, or quick sketches and add some color to them, without using up your more expensive supplies! In the photo I have here, I labeled the areas where the pencils were used, and also where the crayons were used, so you could see the difference. The colored pencils are very light, because I didn't use much pressure with them. I would suggest using more color initially, before blending. Of course you can always go back over it, gradually building up color until it is how you want it. The mineral spirits work well with the crayons and the colored pencils for blending, because it breaks down the binder that holds the pigment together to form the lead or crayon. I believe they are both wax based.

Art the Cheap Way and Mixed Media

I always like to save money when I can, when it comes to my art supplies, because I always want more. Since I am in the process of acquiring one of everything, I like to use cheaper supplies when I can, say if the project is just for fun or practice, or to give me an idea of what color scheme to go with. I have been doing a lot of mixed media lately, and these two methods worked great in my art journal of mixed media. I especially like the softness of the colors, and how easily the crayons blended. I suggest using Crayola crayons, as the colors are more vibrant than say, Rose Art brand. be sure to use as small amount of mineral spirits as possible, so your paper will not get an oily look around your colors. If you do see some oily spots, try letting it sit for a few minutes to see if it will dry. I thought I had messed mine up, and five minutes later the oily stain was gone.

Anyway, here is a new method for you to try the next time you want to play and experiment with your art supplies. Try crayons and mineral spirits and save the more expensive supplies for those special projects!

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Comments 8 comments

Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

Thank you for your wonderful hub.


Laura Thykeson profile image

Laura Thykeson 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

Hello, hello:

Thank you for commenting!


ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

The artwork is beautiful!!! Oh yes, I know colored pencils and crayons can go together! :) Blessings, love and light :)


Laura Thykeson profile image

Laura Thykeson 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

ripplemaker:

Thanks for reading, and for your comment. Thanks also for the compliment on my art!


Carolyn Champion 5 years ago

Your advice on using Crayolas and mineral spirits was great. Gonna place an order with Amazon right now. Thanks...I'll be checking back if I have any questions when I get started. Again...Thank you Carolyn


Laura Thykeson profile image

Laura Thykeson 5 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thank you Carolyn! Enjoy your new method of art!


iron doors 5 years ago

Love the idea, I tried them ,pretty cool!

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The Shakoa 4 years ago

They're great for fine detail, just as colored pencils are. Personally, I prefer crayons. Don Marco is the best at crayon art, though. I do suggest looking him up for the possibilities that crayons can offer.

Note: Rubbing alcohol does not do what mineral spirits does to crayon.

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