It's a long process of coloring lightly and eventually pressing harder. Unlike most mediums that allow mistakes to be fixed. If I mess up in on an area by coloring too hard too early, I can't really go back. It's just a slow process of blending.
I see.. When I use color pencils, it always seems that I can't get the colors right, and the results are more likely to be messy and the colors doesn't blend very well. Thanks a lot for sharing your technique!
I actually use more than one color for most areas. I probably used more than 10 different kinds of greys for the shading on the Cardinal. It just takes a lot of layering, practice, and patience. I didn't know how to use them well for a long time [link]