Wave Ponies. Kerby’s style meets Peta’s style.

Ready for a challenge.  drawing the background on the deer picture in Enchanted Forest had left me itching to create my own art.  What better book to use than Kerby Rosanes’ Animorphia.  Many of the pages in this wonderful invite you to add your own doodles to Kerby’s picture but I wanted to do more than just little doodles.  So I choose a page that would give me more room for something a little more creative.  I was also in the mood to colour in with my favourite colours… teals, blues and greens.  The waves would be perfect!  Below is an image of how the picture I’ve dubbed ‘Wave Ponies’ appears in Animorphia.  As you can see one side of the double spreed is complete with kerby’s distinctive style.  The other side is blank apart from the shape of the waves and the froth/plume on their leading edges.  (‘Skegs’, Aussie for surfers, might know the more technical names.) Lots of potential in this picture for arty fun.



For the first ten minutes or so I stared at the blank spaces mentally trying to ‘jigsaw’ in a number of ideas for the characters i was planning to inhabit them.  I wanted to continue the theme of a mass of living things crammed in together gradually getting larger as we headed to the far right of the page.  I knew I wanted more ponies and variety of sea life along with a few originally created fantastic creatures.  I knew from the start that I didn’t want to emulate Kerby’s style.  Rather I wanted to tweak my own style so that it would marry almost seamlessly with his. When some of my mental jigsaw pieces started to fall into place I picked up my non-photo blue sketcher pencil and began to rough out their design.  When i was satisfied with the basic shapes I refined the sketches with a graphite pencil.  When I was happy with the detail I went in with my Unipin 0.2 and 0.1 sized fineliners to finalise the artwork.  I worked in batches completing one area at a time.  I also added the texture and shading to the waves following Kerby’s style.


The above picture shows both the blue rough sketch and the beginning of the graphite refining stage as well as completed sections.  I moved about the page doing the sections i had the strongest feelings for, leaving the sections I was less certain about til last so that i could balance their content with the rest of the picture.  I erased the pencils lines as I completed each section.


After completing the line art I went through and erased most of the pencil lines.  I didn’t get too fussy as I found that erasing also affected the line art lightening it so that i was forced to go over many of the lines to get them nice and black again.  I’m not sure why this happened as I haven’t experienced this issue with my pens on other types of paper.


Looking at the work I feel that I have accomplished what I set out to do… that is match my style with Kerby’s to create a collaborative piece that works.  Now for the colours.


I started by looking up pictures of waves to find the sort of colours that I thought would work.  I wanted more yellowy greens to give me some play time with an interesting but still wavelike colour gradient.  I decided on the outset to use budget priced pencils.  I have been doing a lot of art with high end pencils and it is fairly easy to achieve great results easily with them.  But I wanted to push my cheaper pencils to see just how much I could get out of them.   I coloured these waves with seven different shades selected from my Micador ColouRush, Fun Stuff, Faber Castell Classics and my new Colleen pencils.  I decided that the ponies would be part of the water given form and life so they would be white with blue shadowing and the manes and tails would match the water.


With the waves completed I concentrated on finishing Kerby’s half of the picture.  As I completed this in several different locations I decided to put my other pencils away and stick with just the Colleens.  The pencils gave me 60 colours for half the space and I am still in love with their softness and easy layering qualities and bright colours despite the breakage issues.  I stuck with my colouring style of leaving white highlights and adding interesting coloured shading which I feel works well with this book.  Note with the ponies how I have avoided taking the blue shading right to the edge, choosing instead to leave a line of white before the line art to give the ponies a shiny look.  I found it really relaxing coming up with the different colours for each individual critter.  Then it was time to move onto my side. 🙂


This project took several weeks on and off and I seriously enjoyed every minute of it.  It’s hard to pick a favourite part as I kind of like everything I did.  (A rare experience!)  I like the colours on the red, cream and blue fish, the surfer girl and the first pony prancing on the left. I also like my little purple cuttlefish.  What bits do you like?  Leave me a note in the comments.




  1. Carol

    I love the mermaid hanging on for dear life. And the narwhal! You added a narwhal! Those blues and greens are my favorite colors (my hair is usually in that color range as well). I’m so happy you enjoyed it. The whole thing is quite amazing and lovely. I am enjoying picking out all the details you’ve added. Superb!

    1. Lise Endacott

      what’s a narwha?

      1. Samantha G.

        It’s a whale that has a unicorn-like horn coming straight out of it’s nose area. It is a real animal. Peta’s is purple near the surfer girl.

  2. Kelly R.

    That’s so awesome. I love to color because I can’t draw at all. Seriously, I tried to take a class once,but was encouraged to drop and get my money back by the teacher. I love the color palette you chose. My favorite creatures are the fish at the top and the little jellyfish. My coloring has improved so much since viewing your tutorials. It makes me happy producing something artistic I can be proud of.

    1. Nancy

      I’m the same as you. I can’t draw a bit! I am jealous of all my artistic friends so I just love my coloring books. I am wondering if I, too, will be ‘asked’ to leave the art class I am wanting to take, lol!!!

  3. Sue

    I love all of it, superb job. I think you should do your own book!

  4. Andrea Hirschhhorn

    It looks fantastic !!!

  5. Sandra Moris

    So hard to pick a favourite, but if I really must… I love the surfing turtle in the middle, the expression on his face says “Yeah, come on waves, let’s go!!!””

  6. Susan

    Just incredible you are truly amazing. My favorite thing is the swan but then the more I looked the more I liked. It blew me away.
    Have to admit I have Googled you (sorry!) and love all your work especially a couple with your black furbabies.
    Like many others that have posted I am very new to coloring and thank you from the bottom my heart for your generosity in sharing your talent.
    Hugs from Tassy.

  7. Mari

    Absolutely beautiful! I love the mermaid, the color choices and the way it blends seamlessly with Kerby’s work!

  8. Sue

    Fantastic work. I love all you added. In fact I love your side quite a lot more than the original artist’s side of this spread. Your horses have such variety and action in them. Your creatures are fabulous and the business of the whole thing is just lovely. I don’t have the imagination to do this. But I love seeing your imagination in full flow here. I want to frame this one.

  9. Nicole Stocker

    Wow, this is absolutely incredible! I’m amazed by how much is going on yet it all makes sense and it transitions so beautifully from yours to Kerby’s. Each time I look at it I find more fun and interesting details. I love all of it but there are two things that seem to keep grabbing my eye: the mermaid hanging on to the horse (I can really feel her hanging on and the movement that goes with it) and that awesome turtle riding the wave. Thank you for sharing this. What a treat to see your process!

  10. Luz

    WOW!!!!! This picture is amazing. LOVE IT!!!!! Everything from the colors to your so call doodles. It just blends perfect as a whole picture. You sure are gifted. My daughter and I love it when you give your personal touch. Thank you for teaching us threw your videos. We can’t wait to see what’s next. We may not be artist but you inspire us to dare and try. Thanks for that!
    As for a favorite part now thats difficult to say but that mermaid holding on just about sums it up from me. She was feeling those waves. Sorry to keep repeating but we love your pictures, they always come to life. I agree with Sue how about your own book? I’m sure it would be a best seller.

  11. Desera

    I am loving the water!! Can you post what colors you used to get that bright green effect?

    1. Chaypeta (Post author)

      I used a combination of colours selected from several different sets: Colleens-> chartreuse green (the lightest ‘yellowish green for the highlights), cobalt green, Faber Castell Classics-> No. 361 and No. 353, Colleens again->peacock blue and finally the darkest parts were layered over the peacock blue with Micador ColouRush->Skyblue. I wanted to complete this picture using only budget pencils to prove that budget pencils can also render spectacular results.

      1. Desera

        You did a wonderful job:).

  12. Elisabeth

    Omg! I would love to see videos of this on YouTube! Both the drawing and coloring, it’s truly amazing work!

  13. Samantha G.

    It came out FANTASTIC! Love the mermaid, also the bottlenose dolphin, the octopus at the top, the pink seahorses at the bottom…I just really love it all. Wish I could draw. I do Zentangle, but that’s as close as I can come. I also love your deer at the waterfall in Enchanted Forest. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful art with us.

  14. Angela

    I love, love, love, your mermaid! I am so impressed and jealous of your abilities! You rock!

  15. Jo C

    Just amazing – I honestly cannot pick a single aspect that I like, because each time I look something new catches my eye! Thank you so much for sharing. I’m new to colouring and have gained so much confidence and inspiration from your posts and tutorials – please keep it coming!

  16. kelly

    you are just so super talented!
    will there be a video of you drawing this?

  17. Jenna

    Oh my god, this is absolutely amazing. It has to be one of my favourite pieces of yours that I’ve seen. My favourite colour is teal(Bluey-green) so the palette for this is gorgeous and I love the mermaid. I spotted her right away!

  18. AnnW

    Oh my! I love it all, hard to pick a favorite – you are so talented! I am envious of your talent! ?

  19. Phyllis Stuart

    As always your work is amazing! My favorite images… the first horse, all the star fish, I just love their expressions! My most favorite is the mermaid hanging in there for the joy ride…she’s the first thing that struck me. I also liked the sea horses.
    Thank you for sharing. I always enjoy it so much. I’m learning from you & I’m grateful for that.

  20. Mirela

    Seus trabalhos são maravilhosos!!!!

  21. Lana

    Every square cm of this work is gorgeous! My favourit is the real pony, as opposed to watery ones. He looks so cute and quite satisfied with himself to get into the glorious company of magical water ponies.

  22. Nettie

    Really wonderful! The turtle jumped out at me immediately, but I’d have to say my favorite is the mermaid hanging on for dear life to the horse, lol.

  23. Julie

    I like all the creatures as they are stunningly beautiful and whimsical but my favorite one is the little green fish behind the whale Kirby drew but ahead of the dolphin you drew. The look on his face is sheer joy. I imagine him to be a simple and sweet character but not altogether bright. LOL. Thanks for sharing, Peta. I have learned volumes from coloring with you.

  24. Astrid

    I love it all, especially since I can’t draw like this either, these pages to draw in stuff yourself stop me from coloring them in. I do have 1 I very much don’t like, it’s the shark, I hate sharks, compare it to ppl who are scared to look at spiders.

    But overal, you have done a wonderful wonderful job, like the colors very much too, looks like real tropical waters.

  25. Natalia

    I have no words. This is stunning!

  26. Vee

    Peta, your work is amazing and absolutely beautiful!!! Why not do a colouring book of your own? I’m sure you have a host of us willing to buy your work. Could even be an e-book….. I so enjoy every video of yours and watch them over and over – thank you so much for your wonderful inspiration !!

  27. Jo

    Peta, I don’t know how you do it. The colors, the shading, all of it – is so beautiful. I watch all your videos. Thank you so much for teaching

  28. Kris

    I’m speechless…just stunning! Your additions are flawless and fit seamlessly with the style. You are truly gifted. Maybe one day you’ll come out with your own coloring book. I’ll be waiting.?

  29. Daniele

    This is by far my favorite piece of yours. Your talent is beyond belief. Yes, Yes, I think you should put out your own coloring book. We’ll all buy it!!! My favorite part of the picture is the mermaid, she is hanging on for dear life and the purple octopus up in the corner surveying everything going on down below. How you fit all those creatures in those waves and have them look like they belong there is amazing. You are a true artist. Thanks for sharing your talent with us. Please don’t stop.

  30. Theresa Petermann

    The first thing I noticed was the colors of the waves and the horses. All the shading to give it such depth. Something I am working on and learning a lot about from watching your you tubes. So glad I stumbles upon your you tubes and blog. thanks so much for sharing.

  31. Katrina Turner

    I absolutely love what you have created, I just wish I had half the amount of talent you have. The colours you have used really enhance the look of the picture. Well done and thank you from the bottom of my heart for not only sharing this process with us but for all the videos etc, I have been using a lot of your effects in my own pictures and they do make a difference to the final outcome.

  32. Dee Dee Boseman

    Wow! Just Wow!!! I love the whole thing. One favorite??? No way! But just to name a few, first of all the color of the waves…also my favorites. I probably color more things teal, turquoise, blue-green, aqua than is sane! My other faves are the mermaid on the pony, turtle, flying fish, birds, the surfer gal, the whale, the narwhal!!! Just the variety of creatures you created is amazing. I’m so glad that I found you on youtube, which led me here. I really like and appreciate your tutorials. I have wanted to learn to draw and how to shadow and highlight my whole life and never really had the opportunity, and have finally jumped in (at 57!!) with both feet and am just loving it! I may never earn even an honorable mention anywhere but I feel I was born to do this – it just feels like it feeds my soul. I am very thankful for artists like you who are willing to spend the time to share and teach us. So thank you, from the bottom of my heart! I am SO looking forward to this art journey!

  33. Nido

    Hi Peta,

    I just noticed the Kerby Rosanes’s 2nd book Imagimorphia is out for sale already. Saw it in my local book store. Any chance you will get a copy?

    1. Chaypeta (Post author)

      I might just have already done that. :0 🙂 🙂
      And yes i love it. I’m planning on doing a metal colouring tutorial with one of those wonderful mechanical looking animals.

  34. Trinity

    This is so awesome! You did a fabulous job!

  35. barb

    wow, ll done Peta. You have entered a whole new realm here . congradulations ! I can see a book in the future. lovely lovely work

  36. Dawn heald

    Oh my, Peta this is outstanding and mesmerizing. I’m in awe of your artistic talent and expression. I’ve enjoyed seeing all the marvellous details and fun you’ve added to this picture. My favourite bits are the mermaids on sea horse, the pinky purple sea Dragon that looks annoyed at the fish biting its butt and the lazy little octopus hitching a ride on the whale near the edge of the page. Superb x

  37. Chris

    Wow Peta, this is amazing! You did a fantastic job blending your style with Kerby’s. I love the colors! The surfer, the mermaid, the turtles… I couldn’t decide which was my favorite! Everwhere I looked I spied something else fabulous. I think you were quite successful in demonstrating that you can create something spectacular with a budget. Just wonderful!

    PS – I really love the sea dragon (?) – the one just to the left and above the mermaid

    1. Chaypeta (Post author)

      Thank you! I had a lot of fun with this one. It took me several weeks, though, so I haven’t begun to tackle another one like this yet.

  38. Norrie

    Love it all! Maybe if i have to pick a favourite, i’d go with the mermaid. I just have a soft spot for them. So cute 🙂

  39. Nido

    Just an update for Animorphia fans that the poster version is out. But it only contains 20 pictures from the original book.

    Peta, will you be getting a copy?

  40. Pingback: Book Review: Imagimorphia – Live Eat Colour

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