I often get asked if it’s better to concentrate on one picture at a time or is it okay to work on many pictures. I guess it all depends on your individual personality. I’m easily bored so I generally have anywhere between 2 and 8 pictures on the go at the same time. If I tire of one, I’ll switch to another. If I want to to use gel pens for a change I’ll pull out a picture I’m using gel pens in. If I want to paint with Inktense pencils, I’ll grab out The Magical City. If I want to concentrate on something I want to turn out really well I’ll go to ‘Enchanted Forest’ or ‘Lost Ocean’. If I want to colour something realistically I’ll pull out ‘Wildscapes’ and if I want to just mess with colour then it’s ‘Peace and Calm Colouring’ or ‘Colour me Calm’ from the Really Relaxing series. there are other alternatives to all of these catagories but at the moment these are my main go to’s.
So I thought you’d like to see what I’m working on right now.
My latest picture is from ‘Enchanted Forest’. I have been keen to get back to this beautiful book. One of the draw backs of buying ‘Lost Ocean’ is that I really want to continue with EF but now I’m torn between the two. I’ll probably alternate with them as they both equally call to me. This double spread with the stag head is a bit of a puzzle for me. I don’t have a definite colour scheme for it yet but I’m thinking I might stick to oranges, yellows, muted pinks and greens with browns and see what happens. As the picture is mirrored I’m doing both sides at once and, departing from my usual practice of starting at the top left hand corner and working my way across I’m just picking out and colouring whatever area ‘talks’ to me.
This picture from ‘Lost Ocean’ is one I started as my second picture. I like how it is turning out but the tiny detail is tiring on the eyes and hands so I do this one in short spurts. One day soon I’ll sit down and complete the thing. I’m colouring it with Staedtler fineliners with Polychromos pencils and Derwent artist pencils (mainly sea green) for the ‘back ground’. I think it needs the internal areas coloured in to make the piece comprehensible to the eye, I think.
This is one of my ‘mess around’ pieces that I’m working in with gel pens. A simple pattern from ‘The Art of Mindfullness Peace and Calm Colouring’. Nice, easy, repetative piece good for letting my mind wander. This one is taking a while as I’ll play with it for ten minutes or so as a warm up before moving onto more serious pieces.
The other main piece that has my attention at the moment is from ‘Wildscapes’, an Australian colouring book featuring all Australian animals. I love this book. The pictures are drawn fairly accurately but with enough looseness that they invite creativity with colouring them. You can choose to colour realistically or make fantasy colour schemes and they both look great. I’ve chosen to stick with realistic colours in this book. This page is part of a two page spread featuring three echidnas. (Pronounced ‘eh-kid-nah’) As you can see I’ve printed out pictures from the net as a guide for colouring them. I love echidnas! They are native to my area and I often see one or two individuals hunting for ants when I go for bush walks around our local coastal forests. You have to be very quiet and keep your distance. The moment one of these fella’s realise they’ve been spotted they immediately use those enormous claws to dig straight down into the soil so that within seconds only their spiny backs are exposed. Did you know these guys are one of only two monotreme species in the world, the second being the platypus. Both species lay eggs! Another cute fact… a baby echidna is called a ‘puggle’. I’m colouring this page with Faber Castell Polychromos pencils.
This final picture is from Angela Porter’s ‘Color me Calm’. I started this one and got this far before being distracted by another picture I wanted to start… I think it’s the day I brought home ‘Lost Ocean’. I actually forgot about this one until just now when I was looking through my books for examples of partially finished pictures. I’m using this to play around with colour merging ideas… red into peppermint green, pink into cream’ and generally enjoying colouring something small and satisfying… love Angela’s work. I’m using my Marco Raffine pencils on this one. The colours are not quite so dense as the Polychromos but I like that too depending on what I’m working on. Also they are really cheap for a nice quality non-artist pencil with a LOT of colours to choose from.
This is not all of my work in progress. I have a picture in Animorphia which is currently on the back burner for now. I have started a little bit of the first elephant picture in Millie Marotta’s ‘Animal Kingdom’, also on Hiatus and the magazine style ‘Colour Me Calm’ has two muck about pictures that I pick at every so often. So what is your style? One at a time or lots over multiple books. Leave me a comment, I’d love to know.