Add Metallic Accents to your Watercolor Paintings

There's nothing like accents of brilliant gold or shimmering silver to add a touch of elegance to your handpainted designs.  Subtle hints of luminous color can elevate the most humble efforts to a place of honor.  An elegant metallic frame - such as the dual-polygonal frame show at left - adds sophistication to a well-executed illustration. A little glitz goes a long way!

Several types of products can be used for adding metallic accents to your watercolor paintings: iridescent/metallic watercolor paints, gel pens, gold leaf transfer film, and metallic acrylic paints are available at your local crafts store and online.  Before you buy, however, be sure the product you choose is safe to use on paper. Depending upon the quality and grade, watercolor paper is made from wood pulp, cotton, or a combination of both, and chemical sizing is used to bind the fibers and make the paper evenly absorbent for use with water-based media. Do not use an oil-based product on paper! Oil-based paint or marker will bleed out as it is absorbed into the paper leaving an oily ring and ruining your lovely artwork! 

Caveat!  Always test any product on scrap paper before applying it to your completed, DRY painting surface!

Here are links to a few of my favorite products for adding metallic accents to my paintings:

> Coliro Pearlcolors are made in Germany by Finetec - they come in sets offering a variety of luscious, iridescent and metallic watercolors

> Uniball Signo UM-153 Gel Pens in Gold, Silver, and White - Love these pens; they last and last, they don't clog, and they deliver continuous smooth lines.

> DecoArt Dazzling Metallics - These have been my favorite acrylic metallic paints for many years.  You might already have these in your paintbox!

Happy painting!  LP