I often start a piece with the idea that it will be clean and simple and then my need for details takes over. Mark marking is the final touch to create focus and textural interest on a painting. I use many methods to “detail up” my paintings but I do love the old school basics of a graphite pencil and fine tip marker. I use Blackwing 602 pencils. They are beautifully crafted and the mark can be crisp or smudged for a blended effect. Posca acrylic paint pens are available in many colors and nib widths. The acrylic paint gives a consistent line. They make exquisite, precise little dots! Both give me the tiny touches that add just the right embellishment to a painting. They are available at DickBlick.com

These two watercolors have very simple shapes that can support a wealth of finishing details. Without those final touches, they lacked character. The mark making includes intricate patterns, element accents, and movement lines- all provided by the slow and thoughtful addition of pencil and ink. Though time consuming, this process can be very meditative.