Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Here is my quick step by step guide on creating tropical summer lettering using the products in Tombow USA’s VIP Box!

Tropical Summer Lettering TutorialHello Friends!

Today I am sharing a fun lettering tutorial using the supplies included in the new Tombow VIP box. The moment this box was announced, I was super excited to try all of the products! It seems that the popular item in the box is Tombow’s new water brush pens. I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to share a fun lettering tutorial using these tools. Keep on reading below to see how you can create tropical summer lettering!


  • Tombow Spiral Art Journal
  • Tombow Water Brush Pen, 3-Pack
  • Tombow Dual Brush Pens (885, 772, 985, 373, 379)
  • Tombow Mono Pencil
  • Tombow Mono Eraser
  • Tombow Mono Pen (I used Size 05)
  • Uniball Signo White Gel Pen

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial


  • Use a scrap piece of paper to wipe off any leftover colour left on the water brush.
  • Test your water brush pen on a scrap piece of paper before applying water to your art piece.
  • Switch around the colours – use the cool colours for lettering and the warm colours to create a sunshine inspired background!

Step 1: Draw Lettering

Start off by drawing your lettering with the Tombow Mono pencil in the Tombow spiral art journal. I first sketched the word ‘tropical’. For each downstroke, I increased the width allowing for a larger area to add colour.

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Step 2: Apply Colour

Starting at the bottom of each downstroke, apply the Tombow dual brush pens in 885, then 772 and 985 to 1/3 of the area.

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Step 3: Apply Water

Using the Tombow waterbrush pen (in your choice of size), add water to the colour. Try to blend the colours to create an overall gradient effect. I like to start with the lightest colour first and work my way to the darkest colour. This will avoid the darkest colour overtaking the lightest colour. Let the ink dry completely.

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Step 4: Outline and Add Dots

Once the ink has dried, outline the lettering using the Tombow Mono pen. Using the Tombow dual brush pen in 885 apply small dots with the bullet tip to the bottoms of each downstroke. Concentrate the dots towards the bottom of each downtstroke gradually decreasing the amount of dots all the way to the top. Once the ink has dried completely, use the Tombow mono eraser to erase any pencil lines.

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Tropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

Step 5: Create Waves

Using the Tombow dual brush pens in 373 and 379, create waves in the background. I first used the brush tip of 373 to create the shape of the wave. I then added a thinner line to the top of each wave with the brush tip of 379. Using the Tombow water brush pen, apply water to the waves creating a watercolour effect. Let it dry completely.

Once dry, use the bullet tip of 379 to outline the tops of each wave. To add additional detail, use the Uniball Signo white gel pen to add dots to the peaks of each wave.

Tropical Summer Lettering TutorialTropical Summer Lettering Tutorial

There you have it – an easy and fun tropical summer lettering tutorial! I hope you try this tutorial. It’s the perfect addition to your art journal for a summer themed spread.

If you try this project, I would love to see what you come up with. Tag me in your creations! I am interested to see your take on tropical summer lettering.

Be sure to follow me on the blog and on Instagram (@letteringbyusha) to stay tuned to all of my lettering, crafting and personal adventures!

What is your favourite thing about summer?


Life Updates

  • Anyone else watch Dynasty? I just finished watching Season 2 and would love to chat!
  • Stay tuned for Instagram stories and pictures of all things lettering related to my sisters bridal shower this weekend!
  • The weather has been anything but summer in Toronto…it feels like Fall. Summer – where are you?

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