Watercolor Pencil – Bible Art Journaling Challenge Lesson 21

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UPDATED: September 11, 2017 *Since this watercolor pencil post was originally published, two things have happened. The Derwent Aquatone watercolor product (essentially watercolor pencil), has been retired. I have also fully developed the official technique for page prep, which will help you achieve the creativity of this fun lesson, with ease and no bleed through on your Bible pages. Info on this post has been updated where possible.


Hello Everyone! Welcome to week 21 of my Bible Art Journaling Challenge! I’ve got a very practical and interesting tutorial for you today using watercolor pencil.

If you haven’t yet signed up for this series, you’ve got nothing to lose. You’ll immediately get a welcome email and start in on a full year of weekly lessons… entirely free!

The greatest benefit of signing up, is a self-paced experience to keep you on track, in this beautiful journey of encountering Jesus through creativity, with myself and our supportive growing community. There are always new people starting and today is a great day to dive right in!

Let’s get started!

When Bible journaling first became popular, there were a lot of problems with people experiencing bleed-through, where everything would just leak through the paper.

I took on the challenge to solve this and took months to develop the page prep technique and even went on to create the Page Prep course, which not only shares about the basics and advanced details of page prep itself (including comparisons of technique and product, etc.), but also other practical foundations, with 15 major art supplies addressed, plus important spiritual foundations we should all have as part of our lives as Bible journalists.

This creative journey

I’ve been creating for more years than I can remember. Only really since the end of 2014, have I been sharing creative video tutorials. You can read my story, if you want to get to know me a bit better.

Every post I share is an attempt to get tutorials onto my blog, that represent the various art supplies in my studio which I love to work with and want to share with you.

I promise I’m not always coming up with ideas about how you and I can spend more money on more supplies. Haha! Please stick with me and use what you have, or get what I share if you like. You don’t have to own everything I share with you. At times I take a break from introducing new art supplies, to show new ways to use ones I’ve already shared. You can search my blog, to look through other blog posts on similar topics, techniques and supplies you want to see more about.

The process of Bible journaling

Before going into what this Bible Art Journaling Challenge lesson is all about and the watercolor pencil technique I’m sharing with you, I want to talk to you about art supplies. This Bible journaling process really is about our time with God. It always should be. If you’re new to me, jump on in! Have a look at my Bible Art Journaling Challenge page to learn how to join free.

My personal feeling is that the more fun you have creating and the easier it is for you, the more you can just flow in that process and enjoy God’s presence. I remember getting hung up on making colored pencils work for me as a kid and it took years to desire using them again. Creativity should bring joy, not frustration. When our art supplies frustrate us, it’s time to learn more about them, before we get frustrated and step away from creating in our Bibles, which is a place we encounter God more deeply.

When we have art supplies we enjoy and also know how to use them correctly, we’re freed to enjoy the process of creativity. Of course with Bible journaling, we don’t want to be hindered by our creative frustrations and have them take our focus away from what the Bible is saying to us. With thin Bible pages to create on, often times, our art supplies can demand center stage instead of being a tool to enjoy God’s presence. It’s a big motivator of why I created the Page Prep course. I want people to forget about the supplies and just engage with the Word in a fun and meaningful way.

It is good to take time to understand our art supplies outside of our Bibles, so when we bring them to our Bible, our knowledge of their capabilities, allows us to create freely and enjoyably. That’s when they are a tool to our time with God, instead of a hindrance.

Watercolor pencil options

When I first shared this lesson, I used a product called Derwent Aquatone, which essentially a watercolor pencil, but without the wood casing around it. Since filming this lesson, Derwent have retired the Aquatone product which is sad because it’s great value, but there is no loss at all, using watercolor pencil for this lesson. In fact, you can simply use the Derwent watercolor pencil set, and it would be the exact colors I used.

For the technique I want to share with you in this lesson, I’d recommend a small selection of a rainbow of colors for the best visual effect and to avoid coloring for days. 😉 To achieve the same look I’ve gone for, you could use any one of the sets I have below, of watercolor pencils. You could even use any sort of watercolor, or even Inktense, which act like watercolor, but is permanent once dry.

I enjoy all of these watercolor pencil sets for various reasons. If you’re after rich color, Caran d’Ache Supracolor watercolor pencils are an investment but amazing.

Derwent watercolor pencil use colors which are interchangeable with the professional artist grade watercolor names, of most well known watercolor brands. An excellent choice for working with more than one watercolor type at a time, such as tubed watercolor and watercolor pencil together on a project. Here are some watercolor pencil options to consider for this lesson.


Crayola watercolor pencils are fairly decent for being a student grade quality. With lots of experience with children and youth, I think Crayola watercolor pencils would be perfect to have on hand, for when children want to create and you want them to enjoy and create quality work without potential waste. Some watercolor pencils can shatter inside if dropped or handled too roughly, making them a struggle to use.

Having a set which kids can use with freedom, without feeling an adult is putting restraints on that experience, will help them love to create with you. If you can afford more quality supplies for kids in your life and teach them to steward what their given so you don’t have to “lord over them” while they create, they’ll have an even richer creative experience.

You’ll always find me recommending quality supplies for adults where possible, because I want you to have an easy time creating. The better the quality of watercolor, the less you have to apply to get rich beautiful color. Thus, less work and more fun. Often these are the ones which are also the most lasting for future generations to enjoy.


Watercolor pencil video tutorial and devotional

Well, I’m excited to share this watercolor pencil lesson with you! And of course, how to page prep for Bible journaling. Just keep in mind that my video lesson is outdated and though the technique is similar to what I now recommend, you’ll find that my recommendations for products in the video, are not all accurate. Please view the supplies list below to ensure you access the supplies I recommend now.

What you’ll see me do in overlapping my colors into a weaved look, is a watercolorist tool to know the qualities and color combinations of their watercolors. watercolor pencil

When you paint Prussian Blue onto a surface and once dry, add Deep Vermilion over the top of it, you get a pretty purple color because the transparent layers appear to mix while sitting on top of each other. If you paint that same Prussian Blue down and put over the top, a layer of Emerald Green, you’ll get a sort of deeper blue green. Put the Emerald Green down first and the Prussian Blue on top instead, and you’ll get a similar but lighter and more blue version.

You’ll also notice that any red color you have (like my Deep Vermilion!), will stubbornly try to bleed in to any adjacent wet area it can reach, because of its strength against other colors. Just like some people who are born leaders that take over situations. 🙂

If you want your art supplies to get good use, learn what lengths you can push them to. By painting stripes of each color in your collection going one way and then doing it again the opposite way across it, you’ll find color combinations you didn’t know you had available to you. I’d highly recommend that you take the time to do this for each of your watercolor and transparent supplies.

For the sake of today’s tutorial, I wanted to make them feel more tightly woven. It is beautiful to look at but less practical as a reference. I’d encourage you to use this opportunity to do this exercise with gaps between your lines and a little extra of each color hanging off your starting side on the top and left, so you can refer to the original color that begins to be seen under, or over, other colors. You’ll eventually find you’ve got a beautiful cheat sheet of every color combination your watercolors are capable of! It also happens to look really cool. 🙂

Enjoy the video and then have a look below for more!

Derwent Inktense pencils, or Inktense blocks are another favorite of mine and would work really well for the technique I’ve shared today. While watercolor can reactivate and “pull up” and be scrubbed away (which is great for certain things), in this tutorial, it would have been super easy to apply my second layer of color had my first been permanently in place like Inktense would make happen.

But, this happens to be a watercolorists exercise which should probably be done with every color range you have and use most regularly. I think it is super fun to discover tons of color options you didn’t know were in your color box. 😉


I used my NASB Note Takers Bible, for this lesson and the scripture for this challenge is Matthew 18:18-20…

18 Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven. 19 “Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven. 20 For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.”

I really don’t want to add anything to what I’ve said on my video today about this verse. It really sums up just what I was feeling about it and I don’t want to repeat myself for the sake of it. I doubt you want me to either. 🙂

There is SOOO much left unsaid about such a powerful verse and a page full of powerful scriptures besides these 3 I shared with you today. I could write a book on it. Instead I’ll let understated simplicity be my guide and thank God for a new week with new things to learn each time we come together.

Thank you so much for taking the time to join me on this journey. I am always so blessed to be on this life journey with such wonderful people. I’m sure we’d have a nearly illegal amount of fun if all my other blog followers, yourself and I, all got into the same room with some art supplies and our Bibles!

May you truly be filled with more encounters with Jesus as you go on this creative journey with me. And by all means, if you’ve got friends who would enjoy being on the journey too, don’t forget to share with them! The more the merrier!

Bible journaling supplies featured

As promised, here are the supplies I featured, in this lesson. I hope they help you find anything you may want to try out.  These supplies are purely optional and you are free to participate with whatever you have, using the devotional for this lesson.

Links lead to my own sites, or my affiliate partners, DaySpring, Scrapbook.com, Amazon.com, Simon Says Stamp, Michaels, Amazon.co.uk and Joy Clair. I occasionally also link to other helpful sites whom I am not affiliated with. When you find products which I’ve recommended through my affiliate partners, this ministry is supported. This has no effect on you and helps impact lives through this ministry. You may view my disclosure for more info on how this works. Thank you. I so appreciate your support, which helps me support your creative journey with God!

Learn about page prep

Page Prep, opens for enrollment a couple times each year and you can learn free in the meantime! Page Prep is an in-depth online course about the spiritual and practical foundations of Bible journaling. It has over 40 video lessons and will take you from beginner Bible journaling, to fresh confidence in your creative time in the Word. You’ll learn all about page prep, before heading into a whole lot more fun in bite sized chunks! All, with a focus on what matters most… God and His beautiful Word!

To learn more visit: www.PagePrep.com

Page Prep Bible Journaling Online Course By Rebekah R Jones

Join me in this Bible Art Journaling Challenge

You can find answers to most any question you may have about participating in this challenge, on the Bible Art Journaling Challenge page and learn more about this devotional series, on the Orginal Series page which holds the lesson archive, supplies list and and how to join in!

Be sure to head over to our Facebook group, to chat about this Bible Art Journaling Challenge and get started on your own creativity!

Many of you ask if it is okay to share these posts with your friends. Please share! It is a simple way you can partner with me to impact lives. And remember, you can join this challenge any date you wish. The community is always growing and you are welcome to participate whenever you want!

Thanks for joining me. Please take a moment and comment below! I’d love to hear from you!

You are loved. x


Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.

*Links take you to my affiliate partners, DaySpring, Scrapbook.com, Amazon.com, Simon Says Stamp, Michaels, Amazon.co.uk and Joy Clair. And, occasionally to other shops whom I am not an affiliate of. When you find deals which I’ve recommended through my affiliate partners, I get supported. This has no effect on you and makes a real difference for me. You may view my affiliate and product disclosure for more info on how this works. Thank you, I so appreciate your support, which helps me support your creative journey with God!