How to Remove Colored Pencil from a Drawing

How to Remove Colored Pencil from a Drawing

This post is a followup to a previous post in which I shared a couple of my favorite ways to remove color. Today, I thought I’d give you a mini tutorial on how to remove color from a colored pencil drawing using those two methods.

I’ll also show you how to add color, if that becomes necessary.

How to Remove Colored Pencil from a Drawing

I used several layers of medium to heavy pressure to lay down the color quickly over this circle. The darkest areas are quite thick and waxy. The middle values are less so. The highlight has very little color on it.

Remove Colored Pencil from a Drawing

Once I finished drawing the ball, the highlight seemed too small. To make it larger, I need to remove some of the color.

Removing Color with Tape

I began by pressing short pieces of tape over the highlight and gently lifting the tape. Because I put so much color on the paper and used such heavy pressure, I used more than one piece of tape.

Removing More Color with a Click Eraser

Next, I used a click eraser to work lightly over all of the highlight. I held the eraser like a pencil and moved it in circular strokes over the area I wanted to erase.

The first time, I started with the lightest area and worked outward into the middle values.

Then I cleaned the eraser by rubbing it on a scrap piece of paper until there was no color left on the eraser.

Next, I worked only on the brightest area. Again, I used circular strokes and went over the highlight a couple times.

I continued to remove color from this drawing until it looked the way I wanted it to look.

Adding Color

Here’s another ball. I drew this one the same way. Lots of color applied with lots of pressure. But rather than lift color, I want to add color.

So I layered indigo blue over the right three-quarters of the highlight using medium pressure. I also worked out into the black around the edges.

Next I added Non Photo Blue. Again, I used medium pressure to add color to the right part of the highlight. I covered all of the area I colored with indigo blue, and also worked into most of the left part of the highlight.

Remove Colored Pencil from a Drawing

Then I layered Powder Blue over the left half of the highlight with medium heavy pressure.

As I moved into the darker part of the highlight, I decreased pressure and gradually blended the blue into the surrounding middle values.

Next was a layer of White, burnished over the brightest part of the highlight.

If I wanted to, I could layer blue over the rest of the ball, too, including adding reflected light to the bottom curves. It’s more difficult to add color to the areas with a lot of color, but it could be done.

That’s How I Remove Color from a Colored Pencil Drawing

These methods work on any type of drawing and on most types of paper. But before you try them on a drawing, I suggest you practice. Keep it simple. Draw some circles like I did, then practice removing color until you’re comfortable with the process.

Try it on different kinds of paper, too, if you like drawing on different papers. That’s the best way to learn how much color you can remove from those papers without causing damage.

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