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February 2019

Create a Cosmic Bouquet with Pitt Artist Pens and Albrecht Durer Watercolor Pencils

Learn how to combine florals with galactic elements to create a unique Cosmic Bouquet

There are two things that I think are absolutely beautiful, florals and the galaxy. Here I’ll show you how to easily create a Cosmic Bouquet using Albrecht Durer Watercolor Pencils and Pitt Artist Pens for details and outlining.

Items used for this project:


Start by lightly sketching out your design with a graphite pencil. Don’t be afraid to erase and re-sketch until you’re happy with the results. Here we’ll be drawing some flowers, planets, and a crescent moon with some stars and dots all around.

*Tip: For the flowers, draw a few circle and oval shapes lightly with your pencil. Then in the center of those, add the same shape but smaller. Then use those shapes as guidelines for the petals.

Now take your Black Superfine Pitt Artist Pen and go over all of the pencil drawing. Take your time and go slowly. Once you are done, use your eraser to remove any remaining pencil marks that are left over from the initial sketch. I really love how well the Faber-Castell Dust Free Eraser works, and the way it leaves very little eraser dust behind. You can also use a kneaded eraser.

Then take your Albrecht Durer Watercolor Pencils and color in the flowers, planets, and leaves.

*Tip: Use multiple colors for everything possible. I used different colors when coloring the planets and flowers, keeping the colors as similar as possible so that they would blend well. And I used different greens for the leaves.

And now you can take your watercolor brush and saturate all the colors to make them vibrant and blend where needed. Also, if you want some colors to stay separated, move around your page to allow different areas to dry before going back and adding more color.

Lastly take your Pitt Artist Pens in Metallic Blue, Gold, and Silver and color in the moon, stars, and dots. I also used the Silver to go over the ring on the blue planet.

You’ll probably notice that I changed some things as I went, like outlining and then changing the color completely on the moon from blue to silver and also changing the pink areas on the other planet to purple. Never be afraid to change things if they’re not quite looking right.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and have fun creating your own Cosmic Bouquet!

Thank you so much,

♥ Chrystal

Chrytalizabeth logo

Everything You've Always Wanted to Know About Gelatos

We’re asked all the time, “What is a Gelato®?”. Gelatos are a water-soluble pigment stick, they look similar to a lipstick or lip balm. They come in a tube with a twist up feature. When you use Gelatos, you’ll notice that they have a soft, silky texture that is similar to lipstick. Gelatos are made of a combination or emollients, wax and pigments. You can find Gelatos in 80 colors including opaque, metallic, translucent and iridescent.

Gelatos are water-soluble, so you can paint with them. You can apply Gelato straight to your surface and then go over it with a wet brush, dissolving the Gelato into a rich, vibrant watercolor. Another method to using Gelatos as watercolor is to apply some Gelato onto a palette, if you don’t have a painter’s palette an old plate or take out container lid works just fine. Then, drip some water and mix with your paintbrush to create watercolor paint that you can then paint with.

Watercolor on palette

Gelatos can also be used dry just by applying to paper and then blending with a fingertip, blending stump, damp cloth or baby wipe. If you’d like to create art with more texture, you can mix Gelatos into different mediums like Gel Medium, Gesso and Glaze. To mix simply cut off a small piece of Gelato, “smoosh” it up with a palette knife or the back of a spoon, then mix into your medium.

Gelatos Dry Blending

When working with Gelatos, don’t limit yourself to just paper! Gelatos can be used on wood, fabric, canvas, unglazed ceramic – nearly any porous surface can be used with Gelatos. When working on fabric, you may want to finish your work by spraying a clear fixative over your work to protect it, especially if you have used Gelatos with a dry method. They work on dark or light surfaces too!

Watercolor on paper

One of the benefits of working with Gelatos is that you don’t have to worry about your work fading over time. Gelatos have been tested for lightfastness. Gelatos are also permanent when dry so you can layer other colors or mediums over Gelatos.

Hungry for ideas and inspiration? Follow us on Facebook, Youtube and our blog for how to’s and project inspiration!

Pitt Pen Wreath

Lets make a wreath! Pitt pens make it super simple.

Draw a circle in pencil, lightly erase, then go to town with your favorite colored Pitt pens!

Here we have the big brush pen in leaf green, Pitt brush pens in chromium green opaque,  permanent green olive, and coral, and the size small black fine liner.

Start with the big brush pen. The fun thing about these is that if you just press the side down, it'll look leaf-like, and you don't have to put much work into it. The big brush pens will give you bigger leaves, and if you mix and match, it'll add lots of depth to it!

Letter your favorite quote inside it, and hang it up!





Photo Feb 28  9 52 26 AMChelsea has a not-so-slight obsession with all things lettering. Watching lettering videos is what got her started, and you can usually find her posting videos using every supply she can get her hands on. From brush pens, to watercolor, and everything in between!


I know Valentine’s Day is over, but to me, February is just a month of love!! 


Not only do I love my Pitt Artist Big Brush Pens for vibrant, large scale handlettering, but my oh my are they perfect for the daintiest, most perfect heart accents! Check out the video below to see how I created these little hearts! 




Leah Kelly



Landscape with Oil Pastels


Hi everyone, Mou here with a landscape tutorial for you! I created this landscape with oil pastels. You need very few supplies for this. I’m listing them below.


Faber-Castell Creative Studio Oil crayons cardboard box of 36 (#127036)

Faber-Castell Creative Studio 6 Ct. Graphite Pencil Tin (#900010)

Faber-Castell Paper Blending Stump (#122780)

Other – paper, baby wipes

Now, let me show you the steps.


Start with a light sketch of the landscape using Goldfaber Graphite pencil. You can work from imagination or memory or from photo reference. For this piece, I worked from memory and then filled in things from imagination.


I like to start coloring from the top to avoid any unwanted smearing of colors. The day I was capturing was a dark cloudy one. I chose a light blue and warm grey for the base layer of the sky and scribbled the colors on.


I blended the colors of the sky with my fingers for a softer look. I used a baby wipe to clean my fingers. Then I started adding darker colors for the distant mountains and blended those colors with a paper blending stump.


I continued to fill in the foreground with various shades of green, blue and brown, blending the colors in and creating textures by scratching with the paper stump.


I decided to add a few grazing cows to my landscape to make it more interesting. I drew silhouettes of the cows with Goldfaber Graphite pencil to finish.

The Creative Studio Oil Pastels rekindled my love for painting landscapes with pastels. I hope you enjoyed today's tutorial and would try these pastels yourself.


How To Create Daily Boxes in Your Bullet Journal

We’re back with another tutorial! I decided to focus my attention to my daily boxes, because I receive the most questions about them.


I don’t use daily pages as many bullet journalists do, because I need more structure. I’ve tried using them but it gives me this sense of pressure to fill it all in, which in turn brings my focus from my actual tasks to solely filling the page. To me, while bullet journaling is an amazing creative outlet for me, I need it to be functional above all else. The result: daily boxes in a weekly spread.


Using this method helps me compartmentalize my week so I can focus on the days and tasks at hand. While I appreciate and admire other methods, after my 3 years of bullet journaling, I’ve found this to be the most helpful.

Using the simple steps above, you can try out your own daily boxes! Keep in mind, what I add to mine are suggestions only - it’s important to create a personalized system that fits your lifestyle and helps you be your best self!

Here is a Free Printable with a few styles of daily boxes for you to use in your journals!

Tip 1: If you print out 7 copies, you'll have enough daily boxes for 8 WHOLE WEEKS!

Tip 2: Color them in using Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pens!


Thanks! Keep creating!




Vincent van Gogh Project


Learn Vincent van Gogh Painting Techniques

    Welcome to the studio, a place to relax, to be inspired and to develop your own creative potential. Here, we will explore ideas and create art with mediums and techniques that will have you achieving rewarding results with your own art.

    Oil pastels offer the diversity of producing strong, intense color as well as delicate pastel tones. They can add a wonderful texture, yet are also blendable.

    In this lesson plan, we borrow a few of Vincent van Gogh’s painting techniques, and create a lively work of art in oil pastel.



“I put my heart and my soul into my work, and have lost my mind in the process.”
~Vincent van Gogh

    In this lesson plan, I have chosen to pay tribute to Vincent van Gogh and his liberated painting style, because it lends itself so well to executing the apple tree project presented here. Van Gogh’s style reflects a letting go of minutia, and focuses instead on shape, color and movement in a composition. His style is loose yet deliberate, lively and strong.

The inspiration; an apple orchard in Maine

    I took these photos one beautiful October morning I spent apple picking in Maine.



    The branches and perspective made me think of van Gogh’s Almond Blossom painting, thus, inspiring me to create my own painting done in his style.


almond blossom painting

Almond Blossom 1890
Vincent van Gogh
Oil on canvas



The Under-painting

    An under-painting is the initial step used by the old masters to help create a plan or “road map” for the creation of a finished painting in oil or pastel. It is the first layer of paint applied to the canvas, and serves as a foundation for the painting, determining future color placement, values and tones.

faber-castell connector paints

    An under-painting can be executed with most any kind of thinned down paint, or even colored pencil, however this “Connector Paint” is a real favorite of mine. It’s ability to be somewhat transparent or opaque, along with the variety of great colors, make it a real go-to paint for almost any type of project in my studio.

    Under-paintings are light in color and done in a loose style. Sometimes they are done with the intention of peeking through the final art in areas, adding subtle dimension and texture. An under-painting done in a single tone can have a dramatic affect by adding a warmth or coolness to the overall finished painting.

    Finally, an under-painting works well because it can ease a painter into the beginning of a painting, eliminating the intimidating blank white canvas space.




Preparing to use Oil Pastels

    Looking carefully at my reference photo, I choose as many pastel colors
as possible, keeping in mind that more colors and layers will add more interest, depth and complexity to the painting.

faber-castell oil pastels

Shown here are the pastels to be used in two ways:

1) I break the pastels into pieces to be able to use the sides of them, gaining more control with handling the small areas of the artwork.

2) I also crush shavings of the pastels and mix them with paint thinner to use as a form of paint.


Beginning with a Sketch

    Referring somewhat but not completely to my photos, I spend some time loosely sketching and composing branches and apples on tissue paper. After combining a few sketches, I arrive at this composition, a perspective looking upward toward the sky. I then trace the drawing onto my final piece of pastel paper using a light table. You could also use a bright window for tracing.


Paper—Instead of white paper, choose a toned, textured pastel paper for your art. When choosing the paper, consider its tone or value rather then actual color. A good middle toned grey or warm beige is a good start. The more “tooth” or texture to the paper, the better it will accept many layers of pastels, thus giving beautiful results.


The Under-painting

    Using the Connector paints, I begin with the background. I create an opaque light blue and green by mixing the white gouache included in the set to the two colors. I then paint the blue/green haze of the apple tree much like Van Gogh would have, by making short diagonal brush strokes alternating the colors. The paint is watery and bleeds together in areas.

Experiment with different colors, strokes and pressure on a scrap sheet of the pastel paper throughout the painting process.


    Next, I loosely paint the leaves and tree branches in their lightest values. This foundation allows me to build on it with layers of more paint, and later, oil pastel.


    When the foundation is dry, I continue to add earthy browns and greens to the branches. I begin to form a rounded look to the branches with brushstrokes that wrap around them, much like Van Gogh painted his almond branches.

    I add a darker green and a few spots of blue to some of the leaves. The beauty of painting in a Van Gogh style is that you can be very loose and impressionistic, using visible brush strokes and leaving seemingly unfinished areas.

    For the apples, I paint a lime green area for the bottom of the unripened apple, and while it is still wet, I paint the rest of the apple in a light red. The two wet colors soften into each other.


Adding Oil Pastel

    I begin adding layers of oil pastel to the under-painting. I cover the background first, using the small pieces of blue, green, lavender and grey pastel. I then blend these colors together by going over it with white. I leave some areas of the under-painting and plain paper peeking through. All areas of the artwork are brought into play as the image develops, as I contour the branches with a variety of browns, greens and a little blue, and I apply dabs of green to the leaves. Single marks of color are left to model the form, rather then blending.

    I use the thinned pastel to paint the apples, being careful to leave the green of the under-painting showing through the bottom of them. I leave the apples at the top edge of the paper light and flat, so as to lose them into the background.



    In this step, I add one of Van Gogh’s most characteristic elements in his paintings, the bold outline. He would often add this strong line in the final stages of a piece as a graphic device to enhance the structure of the image. Using a dark brown pastel, I very loosely outline a lot of the branches and some of the leaves with a broken line. In some areas, I leave my earlier pencil lines. I also use the dark brown to add more detail and contouring marks to the branches.


Erasing—the best way for removing unwanted oil pastel is to gently scrape away what you can with the X-Acto knife, and continue to work over it. The thick, opaque nature of the oil pastels combined with Van Gogh’s forgiving painting style, significantly reduces stress, and allows you to continue with success.

Unify the Elements


Here, I consider the painting as a whole, and judge how the color and tones work together. I add final details with the paint, including highlights here and there on the branches and leaves. I continue to work the background, adding more of the blue and white marks over the top distant apples. I leave some branches and leaves sketchy and unfinished.
Finally, be very careful not to overwork the painting. It’s beauty and drama lie in it’s interplay between bold detail and loosely painted areas.

Lesson Plan by Janis Doukakis


How To Create Ornamental Boxes!

Hi everyone! Faber-Castell USA and I are back with another tutorial! This time, I'm going to walk you through creating simple ornamental boxes for journal!


I’m here to tell you that while some of bullet journaling looks complex, it can actually be pretty simple if you break it down into steps! Starting with a simple rectangle, you can create an interesting space in your bujo for lists, notes, or even quotes!

Tip: Use a pencil first! (Word on the street... Faber-Castell has some pretty sweet supplies if you’re interested... just sayin’) 


Try out each step shown here on these 4 simple boxes! As you can tell, I wasn’t sure what to call them, so forgive the names... I just can't help myself!


Once you’ve completed the three steps, it’s time to push it (...push it real good!) Add flourishes, shadows, florals, and metallic elements to help elevate your boxes, and then use them in your journal! How many other ornamental boxes can you create from a simple rectangle? Experiment and make it your own!


If you'd love to use ornamental boxes in your journal, but aren't ready to take the plunge, check out this free printable here! Download

Thanks, everyone! Keep creating!

Watercolor Pencil Block Letter Blends


First, you want to lightly sketch out your block letters.


Then, start filling in the block letters with the watercolor pencils. I used a mix of 4 colors (2 reds and 2 pinks) starting with the darkest color on the bottom of the letters. 

*Repeat this step until you have filled in all the letters.


Once you have colored in the full letter, just add water! Don't worry about filling in all the white spaces with the pencil because when you add water it will even out.


If you want, you can use a black Pitt Artist pen to add in details, like the outline I added in the next picture. 



The Lettering Fern

Erin is a teacher by day and a creator by night. She loves to try and inspire creativity in her students everyday! Because she’s busy during the day, the night is when her creativity gets to explode into the world through lettering and messing around with watercolors. Her biggest advice would be to not compare your art to other people’s art! Be uniquely you!

The Lettering Fern

Create Beautiful Moments - Pitt Artist Handlettering Pink Brush Pens

Playing around with this gorgeous set of @fabercastellusa Pitt Artist Pens. Such a lovely mix of pinks including brush tips and fine points! Did you know you can create beautiful roses using these brush markers? Start by drawing the center of a rose, and creating c curves around it while increasing pressure at the center point. Keep layering in circles and you’ll end up with a beautiful flower 🌸🌹


45FCCB44-DE16-4C23-AF8E-5D9C361597E4 create-beautiful-moments-handlettering






Happy Lettering!




Leah Kelly is a modern calligrapher and hand lettering artist. She is a military wife who took up the hobby to create decor and invitations for her own wedding. When she’s not addressing invitation envelopes or writing place cards, she loves to use calligraphy and painting as a creative form of meditation. Leah is currently working to get her professional certificate in graphic design.