Animorphia: Brahma Bull with Budget Priced Pencils.

I’m taking a break from Johanna Basfords ‘Enchanted Forest’ to revisit some books that I have had almost from the start of my colouring jag.  Kirby Rosane’s wonderfully wild and whimsical ‘Animorphia’ has been calling out to me from the book shelf and I have finally given in to the urge to colour in it again.  Motivated by the need to do a video review… which you will see a link to in my next post, I picked a picture and set to work on it.  And spured by my pleasure and success with colouring the elephant in Millie marotta’s ‘Animal Kingdom’ I decided to again colour this picture using some of my budget priced pencils.  I chose my favourite Micador ColouRush ($12 for 36 colours) along with an old pack of 26 coloured pencils marketed under the name of ‘Fun Stuff’ which I purchased for $3 from K-Mart over ten years ago.


The left side of this two page spread.


And the right side. My camera decided to make this side a little blurry… should have cleaned the lens first. (It’s my Nokia 1020 phone camera.)


Put them together and what have you got…

These two brands worked very well on the paper in this book.  Although I couldn’t layer as much as I would have with Polychromos or Prismacolor I still found the experienced very relaxing and fun and I’m pleased with the results.


This little bit is my favourite part of the piece. All of the little animals and plants use two or more different colours to bring depth and interest to them. Also notice how I have left a small margin of white to suggest light hitting the animals. Note how this gives the illusion that the pig, crocodile and pink flowers are in direct sunlight while the peacock and leaves, which do not have a white margin, are in the shade. A simple and clever way of adding depth to your pictures.


Again note how I use multiple contrasting colours to give the characters more interest… for instance using blue on the underside of the yellow creature’s belly. Clever, creative colour usage will help make your pictures pop.


I also own a set of Faber Castell Classics, a set of Crayola pencils and also Marco Raffine pencils and I believe these would work equally as well in this book.  Don’t discount using student quality pencils in favour of expensive artist stuff.  If student brand is what you can afford you can have just as much fun and be just as creative.  I’ve enjoyed myself so much with these I’ve jumped straight into another Kerby picture with my budget priced pencils.


Colour the back ground or not? Lets see what happens.



  1. Sandra Harris

    Great tip about the white edges Peta, I did notice this, so clever. I will incorporate that in my doodle colouring in on this pic.

  2. Pandore

    This double page is beautiful ! Thank you for sharing your tips ^^

  3. Samantha G.

    Immediately after reading this post I saw you had posted a video review. I live in California and have the version printed in the US. The centers line up fine but the paper quality is terrible. Everything except colored pencils bleed through, including all my water based markers and my gel pens, neither of which bleed through in either Johanna Basford’s or Millie Moratta’s books. I have had this book for some time and have colored several pictures in it, but I am tempted to try to find one printed on the better paper. Thanks for your great reviews with their important information. Love your videos, great tips and beautiful artwork.

    1. Ami

      There’s two versions of the published book. The UK print is significantly better if you could find their version.

  4. Miguel Espejo

    Peta, you are great. Your tutorials are excellent and inspiring. I rediscovered my childhood’s pleasure: coloring. I really appreciate your work.

    About Animorphia, I live in Lima, Peru and got the US edition… Poor quality paper and binding. I colored first page and had to be careful pressing softly my Caran D’ache’s Pablos. When finished I noticed some paper curling. Thank you Samantha G. for your information; I will try to avoid temptation of using markers or gelly pens.

  5. Mary W.

    Goes to show you that a great artist does not need the best quality tools and can create beautiful work with whatever tools are available. Beautiful work.

    I did not buy this book until recently. I saw the unfavourable reviews for the poor quality paper in the Canadian version printing and saw the paper in person which confirmed it. Even though it was marked down to a very low price I refused to buy it. I bought it at and made sure it was from the publisher with the better quality paper. It shipped directly from the U.K. As long as you keep your purchase below $20.00 Cdn. you are not hit with extra fees and no hold up at customs.

    1. Samantha G.

      Yes, I believe Book Depository will end up being my go-to source for these kind of books. In their descriptions of the books they sell is info on the publisher and location of the print run so you know exactly what you are getting, unlike some other sellers.

  6. Topkatnz

    So very cute indeed:)

  7. Marlene

    Love all your artwork and colouring, Could you please add your newest colouring to your gallery section on your website (Lost ocean, newest pics of enchanted forest). Thank you XOXO

    1. Chaypeta (Post author)

      Yes, the gallery does need to be sorted. It’s on the list. 🙂

  8. Tracy

    I really enjoyed your youtube video on Animorphia! I’d not bought a copy because of the paper quality, but went searching ebay after the video and purchased a UK copy (sent from the UK) printed by LOM ART. Well…definitely better than the US version, but still for pencils only since my tests with my Tombows and Stabilos definitely shadow the paper. It’s not an out-and-out bleed-through, but I wouldn’t want to see the shadow of dark colors showing on another picture.

    Animorphia would be such an excellent candidate for a Deluxe Edition like Marotta’s Animal Kingdom Deluxe Edition (not sure how widely this version is distributed globally?). I’m not sorry about the book I bought – just wish the paper had been even thicker (sounds you the Australian version might be the best!).

  9. Janis Thomas

    I love watching your videos. Just makes me want to color more. I would love to see how you color trees in the pictures you’ve done. They are the hardest for me. Keep the videos coming.

  10. Funny Cats

    This web site certainly has all of the info I needed about this
    subject and didn’t know who to ask.

  11. Samantha G.

    Update on my U.K. version purchase from the Book Depository: It arrived in 5 days from placing my order with free shipping to California. The paper was more than twice as thick as the U.S. version. I also ordered Escape To Wonderland and am so in love with this little book! Thank you Peta for reviewing this book so I could feed my coloring book addiction. Love your blog and videos. I can’t thank you enough!

  12. Trinity

    You colour amazingly! I have always wanted to try this book, maybe I will get it for my birthday!

  13. Marie

    Has anyone experienced the Marco Raffine pencil lead breaking when sharpening?

    Peta I enjoy your videos and coloring/shading tips! You do an excellent job on the videos.


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