The Blend

Beginner Blends for a Lifetime of coloring

 










Join Amy Shulke, professional illustrator and art instructor for an innovative approach to learning Copic Marker blending technique.


Maybe you're a complete Copic beginner-- but odds are, you've taken more than one marker class. You've watched lots of free coloring videos and you've read more than a few blogs and tutorials.


If card coloring classes worked, you'd be blending like a pro already.


It's time to put away the project-based approach to learning Copic Markers. It's needlessly complicated and the results are rigged to keep you coming back for more classes.


Learn how to blend like an artist -- with confidence and independent spirit




The Blend is a 12 Week Study


We're stripping away the distractions which come with coloring cute but deceptively complicated commercial stamps.

With the focus on developing technique rather than copy-catting the class sample, you'll master basic blending skills faster and understand blending at the core level.


Wouldn't it be nice to not worry about blending anymore?


Amy guides you through the complete blending process with comprehensive demonstrations filled with tons of tips, tricks, and technique break-downs.

Class images target specific skills without frustration. Repetition builds confidence, allowing you to master each new blending challenge. Every lesson encourages independent thought and creativity.



 

The Blend is for Copic beginners and anyone who is frustrated with blending


Learn to:

Smoothly blend Copic Markers using flick, swish, fence, and blending strokes

Select quality materials for best results

Control your marker strokes for neat & tidy results

Apply ink efficiently

Basic marker care & maintenance

Make minor corrections (and how to stop before your fixes make it worse)

Choose unique blending combinations based on taste, realism, or the colors you have available

Simple underpainting methods

Determine stroke directionality

Apply shade correctly for dimension

Simple color sculpting

Apply easy highlights using fool-proof tools


 

The Blend is a 12 week study course

New videos, tips, and techniques every week plus feedback and community support



THE BLEND IS NOW CLOSED TO NEW STUDENTS


NEXT SESSION BEGINS JANUARY 1st, 2025


All enrolled students have forever access and can work the lessons any time.

Forum and feedback take a break during hiatus.




COMING SOON: The Point - a 12 week study for Colored Pencils

LAUNCHES JULY 19TH, 2024

Place your name on the wait-list by emailing "Point Wait-list" to [email protected]


 


Practice Images: Ladybug, Ice Cream Treat, Oak Leaf


Your Purchase Includes

  • 1 PDF easy-print image per month for 3 months (four projects per page)
  • 1 PDF easy-print learning aid (four items per page)
  • PNG versions of the 3 practice images (ladybug, ice cream bar, oak leaf)
  • 22 video lessons (each 20 to 60 minutes long)
  • Skills build on top of each other weekly, slow learning for maximum growth and deep understanding


PLEASE NOTE: Lessons are released gradually to allow adequate practice time for each concept. Slow learning is better learning.

One segment is opened per week for a total of 12 weeks. New skills are added on top of the previous lesson for maximum growth, confidence, and long-term memory building.


Your purchase includes membership in The Blend's exclusive community forum access for discussion, assistance, and feedback. See FAQs below for more forum info.


Available IMMEDIATELY Upon Enrollment:

  • Ladybug PDF easy-print coloring image
  • Ladybug PDF easy-print learning aids and photo reference
  • Expanded supply info and instructions
  • Forum onboarding instructions *see FAQs below for forum info
  • Introductory video (11 minutes)
  • Video lesson #1 (23 minutes)


Subsequent Weekly Releases Include:

  • PNG files for digital stamp images
  • Easy-print PDF coloring images for months 2 and 3
  • Easy-print PDF learning aids for months 2 and 3
  • Weekly video lessons
  • Bonus video lessons on key concepts, mindset, and techniques
  • Forum prompts and discussion


THE BLEND IS A MIXED MEDIA CLASS.

All Vanilla Arts classes, courses, and workshops use Marker + Colored Pencil techniques.

The Blend focuses on marker blending techniques but you will be asked to add small details with technical pens and colored pencils. As much as I love markers, they have their limitations.

If you are looking for 100% Pure Copic Coloring, I am the WRONG instructor for you.

 

Required Supplies:

For all segments:

  • Acrylic clipboard, glass craft surface, or other non-porous coloring surface (discussed in first video)
  • X-Press It Blending Card (no substitutions)
  • Laser printer or Copic-safe ink jet model (I do not recommend tracing images for this course

Link to Ladybug supply list* here.

Link to Ice Cream Treat supply list* here.

Link to Oak Leaf supply list* here

* supply shopping lists above contain affiliate links to trusted retailers


WARNING: If you have downloaded and purchased markers from Amy's "Starter Copic Marker Set", please do not expect to use that set for The Blend.

The Starter Set list was NOT designed for beginner classes. It's intended for casual weekend hobby colorers who are learning to blend on their own and want to stick to a small but versatile collection. The Starter set is not a Workshop buying guide.

The Blend uses fewer colors than the Starter set and many colors not on the Starter list.

 


Classes you may want to take during or after The Blend:

(click image to see class info page)


Flutterby - A Beginner's Introduction to Push & Pull for Depth


Oopsie Daisy - A Beginner's Introduction to the Flick Stroke

Your Instructor


Amy Shulke
Amy Shulke

Amy is a professional freelance technical illustrator with 25 years of experience in graphic arts. Amy began using colored pencils in 1985 and she started with DeSign markers in 1989. Colored pencils with a base of either marker or watercolor is her preferred process for portraiture and scientific illustration. She has a special passion for teaching crafters and shy artists to stretch their boundaries by adding established fine art techniques to their coloring projects.

Join Amy for fun and highly informative lessons which will not only change the way you color but the way you see color in the world around you.


This course is closed for enrollment.

Frequently Asked Questions


What skill level do I need for this group? Is there a pre-requisite class?
This is a beginner level coloring class. It is suitable for those who have never touched a Copic Marker, those with some marker experience, and anyone who is unsure or unconfident about their blending skills. There is no pre-requisite for this course.
Is this a monthly subscription or membership? Will you bill me on a regular basis?
No, this is not a monthly subscription. If you select the single payment option, there will be no future billings. The two payment option divides the two payments, thirty days apart. Once your class payment is fulfilled, there will be no further billings.
What is included in the weekly materials?
Please see above for the items available immediately versus those which will be released in later weeks.
How long do I have access to the course materials? Can I keep the downloads?
You have forever access to all course materials. Please note that "forever" really means until I die or retire, whichever comes first. You may keep the downloads for personal use. See the Terms of Use PDF inside the Printables section of the course for legal info.
What if I can’t keep up with the weekly assignments?
Relax, you have forever access to the course materials. There is no rush! Work at your own pace, take vacations, handle family emergencies, and feed the kids when they're hungry. Do the assignments as you have time. There is no prize for finishing first or even by week 12. I'd rather you slowly digest the materials because you'll understand them deeper and remember them longer.
Will I get feedback on my projects directly from Amy?
This course does not include personalized feedback. I visit the forum often and comment when possible on a few projects here and there but The Blend was designed to be more self-sufficient than my previous 12 week intensive courses. I have several very kind and highly qualified forum administrators who comment in their own free time and I also encourage the community to offer support and opinion.
Forum Information
Our students-only discussion forum for The Blend is housed on Mighty Networks, a safe and secure site which does not monitor our content or sell your information. WE ARE NOT ON FACEBOOK. Because the forum is not here at Teachable, admission to the forum is not automatic on purchase. Please see the Forum Info section inside the course for more details on how to apply for access.
Can I participate in The Blend without joining the forum?
You can but lack of participation limits your growth potential. Please note, due to the high volume of email I receive, I do not have the ability to offer project feedback or answer coloring related questions via email. All communications must take place on the dedicated private forum. My forum administrators are all very qualified to answer your coloring questions and my assistant is happy to help with technology issues.
Can I use other brands of markers?
I'll be honest, I use Copic because of their unique brush nib. I've yet to find another maker brand with nibs as springy and juicy. I would suggest that some of my techniques are unlikely to work well without a Copic brush nib. Additionally, you must understand that there's more to art supplies than color. Copic R29 will not behave the same as a similar colored ink from another brand (and usually, the other brands are less stable and less compatible.) Having warned you, if you are willing to match my colors to your brand and promise not to complain when your markers don't work as well, go for it. Keep in mind that I absolutely will not troubleshoot any problems you encounter with other brands because I can not test your off-brand blends myself. Remember, I'm a Copic expert, not an every-brand expert.
Can I substitute other Copic Marker colors for those on the supply list?
This is a beginner course and to be honest, at this point, you probably don't know enough about Copic Markers to make good substitutions. Not all Copics behave the same and two similar colors can create very different effects. Every substitution adds another hurdle between you and learning proper blending technique. Relax, my supply list is designed to use extremely versatile markers and we use combinations favored by Copic fans worldwide. Watch the video and see how I'm using the marker before deciding to purchase the Copic I'm using or substitute another Copic color.
Is this class suitable for children or teenagers?
This course is designed for adults, not children or young teenagers. I speak in the videos at an adult level and I assume the audience has basic adult skills and life experience. Plus, I've been known to accidentally say humorous things I wouldn't want your child to repeat at the dinner table. We're not vulgar or obscene but this is an adult environment. Please do not purchase this course for anyone under 16 years old.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We follow Teachable's 14 day money back guarantee. Please contact us within 14 days at [email protected] to start the refund process minus a processing fee. Due to the digital nature of this course, absolutely no refunds are possible beyond the 14 day mark. NO EXCEPTIONS. Note: A refund withdraws you completely from the course. You will lose access to the course panel, course materials, and associated forum.
Can I download the videos to watch offline?
Sorry but no, you must be paid in full or up to date on the monthly payment and you must be logged into your account here at Teachable to view the videos and livestreams.

Course Curriculum


  Digital Stamps (Not for use during the course)
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  Interlude 1: Refill Your Markers
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  Interlude 2: Copic Numbering System
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  Ice Cream Treat 2: Efficient Creative Blending
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  Ice Cream Treat 3: Confident Blending with Speed
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  Oak Leaf 2: Texture Over Blending
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  Oak Leaf 3: Underpaint and Overpaint
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  S.O.S. Help
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"The Blend course has been a joy for me and what a great beginning for my journey to really understanding the principles. Amy, you have been the perfect teacher for me. When I bought my first Copic Markers, I signed up for several workshops. Unfortunately, they never provided the information necessary to optimize the markers. This class is truly the place to start learning how to effectively use Copic Markers. Now, thanks to your 'spot on' teaching methods, I'm excited to have begun what I know will be an amazing journey!"

"The Blend was very challenging and rewarding. I learned a ton. This was my first art class since the early 80's and Amy is a top notch educator for sure. My wife is a retired teacher and I was a teacher for a short period of time. I felt the the instruction was second to none."

"At 62 years of age I have no illusions about becoming a great artist but. I am so appreciative of the change in my perception since taking classes with Amy at Vanilla Arts Co. Now I see the play of colors, the motion and the grace... It's a great way to view the world around me."

The Blend is a 12 week course

New videos, tips, and techniques every week plus feedback and community support

$220 for lifetime access - that's $18 per lesson!


THE BLEND IS NOW CLOSED TO NEW STUDENTS


NEXT SESSION BEGINS JANUARY 1st, 2025


All enrolled students have forever access and can work the lessons any time.

Forum and feedback take a break during hiatus.




COMING SOON: The Point - a 12 week study for Colored Pencils

LAUNCHES JULY 19TH, 2024

Place your name on the wait-list by emailing "Point Wait-list" to [email protected]