Entry Has now closed and the winner will be announced shortly, thanks to everyone that entered and good luck
Before colour photography if you wanted a colour photograph of your loved ones you could employ a proffessional to colour your black and white photographs by hand. Imagine what a wonderful job that would be… to sit all day and colour and get paid for it! Coloring greyscale photographs is just as much fun as colouring line art as I discovered when I was sent this lovely book full of greyscale images compiled by Nicole Stocker. Beautiful Creatures is a unique colouring book printed in Canada by Huelish and contains 48 greyscale photographs featuring animals from all walks of the animal kingdom.
Each picture is printed on lovely thick paper with a decent tooth for coloured pencils. The pages are all neatly perforated close to the spine for easy page removal, a;ways a sought after feature of colouring books and shows the thoughtfulness that went into the creation of this one. The work is especially suited for coloured pencils although you may like to experiment with other media. Any media that is translucent, that is will allow the image to show through it, is worth trying in this book. the idea is to colour over the greyscale and allow the lights and shadows of the printed image to give the picture detail and texture. The end result is very much like looking at a photograph with a pencil filter overlay. Nicole has included a tutorial at the beginning of the book with a simple set of instructions to get you started.
My first attempt above I coloured with a combination of budget priced pencils: mainly Faber Castell Classics, Micador ColouRush and my old Fun Stuff pencils. (Funstuff is a really cheap kids supermarket brand that turned out to be surprisingly nice. They are, sadly, no longer available.) As you can see you do not need expensive high end pencils to get great results with this book. I found the nature of the printed image left a slightly blotchy texture which can be smoothed out with a variety of blending methods. I preferred to keep it.
This lovely portrait of a basenji was coloured with high end Faber Castell Polychromos pencils. they also work beautifully on this paper over the print. I choose to smooth out the blue and yellow background with a Derwent blender pencils.
I again returned to my FC Classics and Fun Staff pencils for this terrapin. This picture was a bit more of a challenge with all the thin black line markings and I needed to keep my pencil sharp. I love the way Nicole has loosely framed each of the photographs giving you a defined border around each picture. Every one of them would look great framed and hung up in a simple picture frame. I really enjoyed colouring in this book. I found I could achieve great results in less time than it would take me to colour a normal line art piece. I think this is because most of the shading is already done for you. All you need to do is add your colours over the top. A great advantage for busy people with little time to colour. You have the advantage of being able to research the animal for the colours you require or you could wing it and unusual colour palettes for a psychedelic look.
If you would like a more detailed look at this book here is my video review of Nicole’s book on Youtube:
If you would like to purchase a copy of Beautiful Creatures check out Nicole’s site at:
While you’re there have a look at her gallery filled with examples of each page fully coloured by many different colourists.
Now for the cool news! Nicole has generously sent me a second copy of Beautiful Creatures to give away to one lucky reader! For your chance to win it all you have to do is leave a comment below stating which colouring book in your collection is your favourite one to colour in! It’s that simple. 🙂 The competition will run until May 1st with the winner being announced here on this blog on Monday May 2nd 2016. The winner will be selected randomly from the list of entries so everyone has an equal chance to own a copy of this fun and unique colouring book. Good luck!