At last I can get started with the fun part, the coloured pencils! I begin applying colour from the top lefthand corner, mostly to avoid inadvertently smudging the colours with my hand or sleeve as I work. Later when I need to go back to parts of the drawing to add more colour I will place a piece of paper under my hand and lean on this while drawing for the same reason. Coloured pencils are easily smudged and the details of a drawing can very easily be blurred without the proper care.
The first thing I need to draw is a small corner of water. I take 5 colours which I think I will need to produce the right effect, plus Chinese white to help blend everything together and achieve some depth. I use spruce green to start with using even strokes and filing up the whole corner area. I then go over this with a layer of oriental blue and use a blending stump to blend the two colours evenly together. I use the stumper at an angle to the direction of the coloured pencil so the colours blend well. This is followed by layers of juniper green, prussian blue and blue grey, each time using the blending stump to mix the colours.
I have no doubt that this will need more attention later, but next I want to start drawing the first fish.
For the moment I feel I've paid enough attention to the fish. The fin and lower side will need more colour and more blending when I've done the surrounding water. Using the same colours as for the water in the corner I colour around the fish, mixing the pencils in the same way.