Metallic Ombré Lettering Tutorial

lettering Apr 30, 2020

We're about to jump into a fun step-by-step that will teach you how to create metallic ombré lettering.

Aloha! It’s me, Sue, from @LetteringwithSuzy. I’m going to share with you my favorite way to letter with metallic watercolors. It’s fun and mesmerizing. Let’s get blending!




Step 1: Select your colors 

Start with 2 colors. Swatch the colors you will blend on a separate watercolor paper and blend them to see the result. I recommend a pre-blending swatch to avoid muddy colors and having to start your art piece over. (I’ve done that a few times). I am blending a metallic blue and purple in this piece.


Step 2: Letter your word

Use a grey brush pen to letter the word. The grey will be your guide to layer the watercolor on. I have selected the word “recharge.” You can use any style for this technique: bounce, flourish, bubble, block, etc. I use heavier watercolor paper to blend on to prevent the paper from warping too much while blending. Let the grey dry.


Step 3: Layer your metallic watercolor

Start with the first color and paint the grey guide. You want a slightly creamy texture on the paintbrush and not watery. Paint half way down the stroke and then switch to the next color. For each downstroke area, I like to alternate the 2 colors on the top and bottom of the blend, this brings attention to the whole piece. You can totally go for a gradient blend and have one color on the top and the other on the bottom of the letters.



Step 4: Blend!

To create a seamless blend, taper the ends of your strokes like the marks on a ruler. Then switch colors, paint a little below the first color and pull the color to the next blending zone. Go back to the blending area, and draw lines up into the first color. To blend pull and push the colors up and down, as if you were drawing hair. This technique eliminates the harsh blend line where the 2 colors meet. You can add more color if one is overtaking the other one. Try not to have too much water on the brush, as it will dilute the watercolor and causes patches.



Step 5: Let it dry

Let it dry! Give it about 10 minutes. Once it's completely dried, you can go back to fix the blend if needed. Use a damp brush with just water and swipe the blended area. If the area looks patchy, go back in with a little more watercolor.


Step 6: Finishing touches

Use the grey brush pen to add a drop shadow to make your piece pop. Since darker colors were used here, I added white lines to create a bubble effect.

Bring your art piece to indirect sunlight or under a white desk light and watch your piece shimmer and shine! Have fun and Enjoy!!


Thank you for letting me show you how I create these shimmery pieces! If you created a piece make sure to tag me on Instagram/Facebook so I can see! I also have videos on Instagram if you need to see this done. :)

I'm Sue from @LetteringwithSuzy on Instagram and Facebook. I started lettering in 2017 after I moved from New York City to California. I was a card marker looking for new techniques on my Instagram explore page. I found brush lettering videos and got sucked in! I immersed myself in the craft and now I’m brush lettering, watercolor blending, creating videos and even teaching brush lettering workshops. Lettering has been my outlet for stress and a great hobby to meet new people. Come say Hi!