Each time I color I attempt to do something new or different in terms of either the medium I use or the colors I choose. The two examples below are about my color choices. I attempted to incorporate colors that I wouldn't normally have used either in relation to the subject or in combination with the other colors used for the picture. I learned that getting creative with color can create some wonderful results.
I was inspired to do this by Christine Kowbuz (read an interview with her here) who uses color to set off other colors so beautifully! I still have lots to learn but I hope to keep experimenting and to learn more about color so I can achieve better and more exciting results!
TIP 1: Increasing Impact & Depth With Color
I colored the cow using a predictable palette of browns with some yellow and black. I found it was a bit flat so then I decided to try to create more depth & impact by using some reds and blues as accent colors. I made sure to still "follow the gray" when deciding where to use the reds and blues. This means I colored over the medium to dark gray areas with the reds and blues and not the light gray areas because that would have taken away from the highlighted areas which contrast with the shaded areas to help create the shape & depth.
By accenting with these bolder/contrasting colors the shaded areas are became more intense and interesting (i.e. more shape & texture) while also creating what I believe to be more of a 3-D effect (or perhaps I'm just hoping for that?!). To me, the head feels even more like it's coming forward vs. the cow's body that is a bit softer and fading away slightly. I'm very curious to try this with other pictures. I believe if I had just used a larger range of browns then I would have gotten quite a realistic result but it wouldn't have been as strong. What do you think?
Tip 2: A Limited Palette That Gives You All You Need
I love working with a limited palette. There is something so simple and relaxing about it (as if coloring isn't already relaxing enough!). However, if I limit my palette when coloring grayscale then I have usually limited it to a somewhat monochromatic palette with a range of lights to darks rather than a range of truly different colors. This time I challenged myself to work with just four different colors for the entire picture, including the background: yellow, green, pink & purple. For this picture I used three colors on the flower petals and three colors on the leaves and background:
Flower petals: yellow, pink & purple
Leaves & background: yellow, green & purple
Here are the steps I followed:
Overall, I was very pleased with the results. I love the beautiful, delicate colors that resulted from layering as well as the wonderful yet not too stark contrast between the flower petals and the leaves and background. Because there were common colors throughout the picture there is a nice continuity but that small difference in the palette for the flower petals vs. the background and leaves provides the perfect amount of contrast.
I really enjoyed coloring this way. I look forward to trying it again and getting more creative with my colors. If you haven't already tried experimenting with color I encourage you to. It was really fun! I didn't know what I was doing but that was part of the fun and made it that much more exciting when I achieved a result I was happy (and surprised!) with!
If anyone has any tips about using and selecting colors I would LOVE to hear them! Please leave a comment below.
Below you will find a wonderful collection of truly useful grayscale coloring tips. All of these tips can apply to line art coloring as well but the visual examples use grayscale coloring pages.
These tips come from the talented artist, Jones Flores. She has very kindly shared her coloring tips with many colorists over the past several months via the Facebook coloring groups. When I asked her if I could gather them all together into one blog post to share with all of you, she very generously sent all her tips my way! In some cases, I have enhanced the tips with additional information that I think you will find helpful.
The tips you will find below are:
TIP 1: Making Your Subject Stand Out
Colorist: Jones Flores
Coloring Book: Beautiful Nature
Medium Used: Prismacolor Premier colored pencils
I'm excited to bring you our first grayscale PAINTING video tutorial! I hope to have several more for you in the future.
In this grayscale coloring tutorial the talented artist Julie Flores (Jones Flores' sister!) shows us how to paint the peony buds from "Beautiful Nature" using acrylics. Julie takes us step-by-step through the painting process to achieve the gorgeous result above! This video tutorial is based on the painting techniques provided by Julie and outlined in a previous blog post.
If you wish to paint along then here is what you'll need:
Click the video below to start watching. I hope you find it helpful!
*Note: if the video is too "speedy" then just enter the video link (https://youtu.be/FevWkVlAPMU) at www.youtubeslow.com and you can slow the video down to the best speed for you.
Happy Coloring (and Painting)!
Who Wants to Learn How to PAINT Grayscale? I Do! I Do!
In this post we will learn all about painting grayscale from an amazing self-taught artist, Julie Ann Flores. You might recognize her last name because she is the sister of the extremely talented Jones Flores who I did a post about a little while ago! I feel so fortunate to have gotten to know them through their art. They are wonderful and talented women that are excited to share their techniques and knowledge with all that are interested.
Let's get started...
Below, Julie outlines the 6 key techniques she uses when painting grayscale. She provides an explanation and visual for each technique to paint the tulip field picture below from Beautiful Nature.
In addition, Julie provides two slideshows showcasing the 6 techniques. The slideshows provide step-by-step guidance so that you can follow along! One is the Gerbera Daisy (showcased above) and the other is a Lotus Flower.
This is the second instalment in my "Advice From A Grayscale Colorist" blog series. This time I interviewed a very talented and self-taught colorist and artist, Christine Kowbuz. Over the past several months she has shared many of her colorings from Beautiful Creatures with me and I became very intrigued by her coloring style and techniques. I was thrilled when she agreed to be interviewed!
The questions I asked:
First, let's start by taking a look at some of the gorgeous pieces Christine has colored (the horse above is hers as well!). Then, we will dive into finding out how she achieves these incredible results!
There are so many amazing colorists with all kinds of incredible coloring ideas and techniques to share. I thought it would be fun and helpful to start an "Advice From a Colorist" series of blog posts where I find a colorist that impresses us with their incredible talent and ask them to share some of their most unique coloring techniques. These are techniques that work wonderfully for grayscale coloring but can be applied to any kind of coloring.
Lucky for us, the very talented colorist Jones Flores is going to share some of her coloring techniques with us! Jones is a self-taught artist who believes art is an unspoken language that touches not only the mind but the heart as well.
Specifically, you will learn:
Let's get started...
Although grayscale coloring is becoming quite popular, it's still very new to a lot of people and somewhat unapproachable to many. A common response when someone first sees a colored grayscale image is to think "I couldn't do that!". The extremely realistic result one can achieve with grayscale coloring can look unattainable when in actuality it's much easier than giving depth and dimension to a coloring of a regular line drawing.
I thought it would be worthwhile to interview a whole range of colorists regarding their grayscale coloring experience in order to give those considering it some insight into the experience & process, hopefully encouraging them to give it a try! For those that are already coloring grayscale, I think you'll find the grayscale coloring tips from these colorists quite helpful.
I asked 14 colorists (including myself) to provide a grayscale picture they've colored and answer these 4 questions:
I've also included two practice grayscale pages for you to download and try. You will find those at the end of the post. I hope that after you've read everyone's grayscale coloring tips you will print out the practice sheets and give grayscale coloring a try, if you haven't already!
"Grayscale coloring acts as a guide so it's almost impossible to mess up! You can be as realistic or as abstract as you like...I colored blue flamingos with a purple sky!"
Today I will be providing you with a step-by-step grayscale coloring tutorial done by a very talented colorist, Ann Reid.
There is a wonderful Facebook coloring group that is focused on coloring pages from the Beautiful Creatures coloring book. It is full of amazing colorists from around the world (join us!) that range from novice to expert colorists. We all share our work and provide each other with tips, tricks and encouragement.
Ann is part of this group. She inspires all of us because of (among many other wonderful qualities) her incredible talent. Every person in the group looks forward to seeing her next creation. She is able to capture every single detail with such amazing precision. She achieves that hyper realistic result that so many of us are striving for when coloring grayscale. The dog above and the four stages below were all completed by Ann. As you can see, she truly brings the image to life! Amazing!
One of the wonderful things about coloring over grayscale is that you can be very creative with your colors and still get a really realistic result. As long as you follow the guidance of the grays when determining where and how dark or light to color, you'll be able to get a realistic result. Here are a few examples:
I'm a Mom of 2 from Vancouver, Canada. I recently discovered grayscale coloring and loved it so much I published Beautiful Creatures and Beautiful Nature because there were no high quality grayscale coloring books to be found. Join me as I write about the grayscale coloring techniques I have learned and that I am continuing to discover!