Siren of Pearls

Howdy folks!  Today (well actually a couple days ago) was my day on the Make it Crafty Blog to post something and and I’m here to welcome you back to another underwater tutorial.  This one uses the same steps as the last one, but with a different image, it might give you a different perspective too!  For this project I merged a few images together from the fabulous Make it Crafty store and grabbed one of the gorgeous mermaids to play with… Siren of Pearls.  All the colors and images are listed below in case you wanted to jot those down.

Step 1 – On this image, the sun will be shining into the water from the upper left corner and I start coloring the rays using B52.  Sometimes it helps me to put an object at the top corner so the angle of the rays radiate in a natural curvature.  Once the first layer of color is applied then I’ll remove the object and remember to be consistent on the direction of the rays. For each stroke of the marker, I use the side of the brush tip and always start outside the range of the image then drag in the direction of the ray with a quick motion.

Step 2 – Add darker rays with B93. When coloring an underwater scene like this, I like to start with the ocean background first.  That way I don’t have to worry about being precise and if I make a huge mistake then I can always start over without loosing too much.

Step 3 – I continued to add rays using B00, B93 and B52 until most of the ocean is colored.  It’s okay if the colors are bleeding into the rest of the image since I can either remove most of the color later with a Blender marker.  Plus having some of the blue in the rest of the image adds an overall underwater feel.

Step 4 – Now I change direction of coloring to start from the sea floor and use BG11 and BG15 to color up using the same technique.

Step 5 & 6 – Continue to darken the lower ocean with BG15 and G85 then blend in with BG11 and G00.  I like to pull the greens from the bottom up into the blues but not all the way to the top.  The darkest part is at the horizon of the image but I also add a little bit of color at each ridge in the seafloor.

Step 7 – I return back to add just a little more color using the original colors, B00, B93 and B52.

Step 8 – In this step I add seaweed much the same way I would color grass on another image; the difference being seaweed is more of a wavy line and a lot taller.  Clusters of seaweed are colored in using YG93, YG97, G85, G82 and G40.

Step 9 – At this point I’m able to look at the overall effect of the ocean and usually add a bit more color where I think it’s needed until it’s finished.  For this image, I added a touch of G21 and BG72 then blended a little with BG11.

Step 10 – I colored the rest of the image using a variety of bright colors.  Since the little fish were mostly colored already from the ocean technique, I used the Blender marker to remove a lot of it before coloring them.  I also brought in a little texture by using dots on the seafloor and the mermaids tail.

Step 11 – Once everything is colored, I can go back in with the Blender marker to create bubbles and use a white gel pen to add other highlights.  The pearls in the hair was a technique I learned from Daria ( and loved the effect.

Step 12 – The final step is to trim around the image and place it on the card and embellish it.  Since the image takes up most of the card area, I clustered my embellishments in one area and left the rest of the card as-is.  Of course the scene looks great without embellishments too but I wanted to experiment with the Fancy Ribbon Sliders chipboard embellishments.  😀

Copic Colors:
Sea Floor (B00, B93, B52, BG11, BG15, G85, G21, BG72, G21)
Seaweed (YG93, YG97, G85, G82, G40)
Coral (R02, R05, R08, R29; V12, V15, V17; and Y06, Y18, YR23, YR24)
Fish (FYG1, Y06, Y18, BG57, BG09)
Sea Floor (E51, E53, E55, E57, E59)
Clam Shell (R83, R22, R21, R12, R11, R000)
Mermaid Skin (E31, E30, E21, E00, E000, R12, R11, BV23, E04)
Mermaid Tail (B91, B93, B95, B97, B99)
Mermaid Hair (E71, E74, E77, E79)
Shadows (T3, T4, T5)
Make it Crafty Products:

I’d like to enter this into the following challenges:
Fresh Brewed June Challenge – “Mermaids, etc”
Bastel-Traum Challenge – “Water”
Natalie and Amy Challenge #10 – “Fantasy”

Update: I was selected the gold winner at Bastel-Traum Challenge!

27 thoughts on “Siren of Pearls

  1. Wow, I just LURVE your mermaid, and you would NOT know you'd had any trouble with that paper at all. the white gel pen finishes the water off beautifully.Had to smile at your dictionary story…..I did the same thing, bought an old dictionary, pulled out a page then later looked and there WAS a pretty rude word on there! Gave up that idea and bought an old book instead, then couldnt bear to tear it up and have kept it to read instead. Got some designer papers in the end, lol. CoB


  2. Barbara this is breathtaking….I just can't get my head around everything…. the way you coloured the sea!!!!!….Your attention to detail is mind blowing…I just want to get in you head, your absolutely awesome!!!!!xxx


  3. THANKS so much for your great card and your LOVELY underwater tutorial. I searched the web for a tutorial and I can`t believe it,so a beautiful one to see here by… YOU are a AMAZING artist… best wishes from Switzerland 🙂


  4. THANKS so much for your great card and your LOVELY underwater tutorial. I searched the web for a tutorial and I can`t believe it,so a beautiful one to see here by… YOU are a AMAZING artist… best wishes from Switzerland 🙂


  5. HI Barbara, YOU are a WINNER by… Curious? Than visit our website and look, what you win 🙂 Best wishes from Europe says Ute


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