April 05, 2024 4 min read

Unleash Creativity Anywhere: Watercolor Pencils as a Portable Paint Palette


In the world of art and creativity, versatility and convenience often go hand in hand. For artists and parents alike, finding ways to bring the joy of painting without the hassle of carrying numerous supplies is a game-changer. Transforming watercolor pencils into a paint palette is not just incredibly easy; it's a revelation that opens up endless possibilities for art creation on the go. This innovative approach is perfect for sprucing up your sketchbooks or creating fun watercolor coloring pages for the kids. Let's dive into how you can achieve this with my recommended products and favorite watercolor pencils from the NIL - Tech 55 pc Art Set.

Supplies You'll Need

watercolor pencils into a palette
To get started, you'll need a few key supplies, most of which you can find in the
NIL - Tech 55 pc Art Set, ensuring you have high-quality tools at your fingertips:
  •  Watercolor Pencils: The backbone of this project. The NIL - Tech 55 pc Art Set includes a variety of colors to choose from. Get Your 55 pc Art Set HERE.
  •  Watercolor Paper: Opt for the NIL - Tech White Sketchpad, which is durable enough to withstand the watercolor pencils without warping. Find it HERE.
  •  Watercolor Brushes: A refillable water brush and a regular nylon brush, both included in the 55 pc Art set, will be your best friends for this project. The refillable brush is particularly convenient for kids and travel, eliminating the need for a separate water cup.
  • Paper Towels or any tissue which you can use to clean your brush inbetween colors. 
  • Glass of Water if using regular brushes. 
  •  Drawing Template or Stencil: For this tutorial, I did not use a stencil, but feel free to choose any stencil that sparks your creativity. You can find a wide array of stencil options that cater to different interests and skill levels. HERE

Wanting to Try some New Supplies? Here's a list to get you started: 

Turning Watercolor Pencils into a Paint Palette: Step-by-Step Guide

1. Prepare Your Palette: Begin by selecting a range of watercolor pencils from your NIL - Tech 55 pc Art Set. Using a drawing template, color in a circle for each watercolor pencil shade you wish to include in your palette. This step creates your "paints" from which you'll draw pigment.
watercolor palette
2. Activate the Pigment: Here's where the magic happens. Take your water color brush and gently add a small amount of water to each colored circle. This action will dissolve the pencil pigment, turning it into a paint-like consistency. Ensure you have a paper towel handy to clean your brush between colors, preventing color mixing unless intended.
3. Creativity in Action: Now that your palette is ready, it's time to bring your artwork to life. Whether you're using a stencil like the sea turtle one mentioned or diving straight into freehand drawing, your prepared watercolor palette offers all the versatility of traditional watercolors with none of the setup or cleanup hassle.
watercolor painting
4. Perfect for On-the-Go and Kids: The beauty of this method lies in its simplicity and portability. The refillable water brush, in particular, is a fantastic tool for children and for artists on the move. It negates the need for a water cup, making it less likely for spills and messes to occur. 
waterbrush pen
5. Stencil or Cut and Attach: To create beautiful artwork to color you can use a stencil (shown under # 1, links above) or you can take advantage of the coloring pages you already have. Simply cut the picture out and attach using a washy tape your blank palette sheet (like shown under #2). 
watercolor palette

Why This Method Is a Game Changer

For Artists: This approach to watercolor painting is a boon for artists who love to capture inspiration as it strikes, regardless of where they are. It makes sketchbooks more vibrant and allows for a spontaneous burst of creativity without the need for extensive preparation or cleanup.
For Parents and Kids: Introducing children to the joys of painting can sometimes be daunting, given the potential for mess. However, transforming watercolor pencils into a paint palette simplifies the process. It's an excellent way to engage kids in art, teaching them about colors, mixing, and painting techniques in a controlled, easy-to-clean-up environment. Plus, the act of preparing the palette is a fun activity in itself!


Transforming watercolor pencils into a portable paint palette is not just a clever art hack; it's a doorway to more spontaneous and joyful creation, for both seasoned artists and young learners. With the right tools, such as those found in the NIL - Tech 55 pc Art Set, and a bit of imagination, the world becomes your canvas. Embrace this method and see where your creativity takes you — whether it's to the peaceful depths of the ocean with a sea turtle stencil or to the colorful realms of your own making.

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