Here's an awesome article posted on Quill.com who kindly offered me the chance to share on my blog. If you love coloring, you can take the hobby to a new level by using creative gel pen techniques that amp up the fun and add visual appeal.
Creative pen strokes and patterns add texture to coloring sheets. Fill spaces with stripes, polka dots, swirls, geometric patterns, hatching (parallel strokes), crosshatching (perpendicular strokes), and stippling (small dots) to make coloring pages pop.
Get Creative with Colour
Half the fun of coloring is working with a rainbow of color. You can also intentionally limit colors to create interesting effects. Use a color wheel to find an appealing color scheme. Experiment by limiting your palette to:
Some gel pens smear easily, but that doesn’t need to be a drawback. You can use this quality to your advantage by intentionally blending colors together or creating a gradient effect with one color. Some gel pens are wetter on the page, while some tend to be dryer. Wetter pens usually work best for blending.
Experiment on a blank page to determine which of your pens smear best. Color a small square, and experiment with a blending tool or your fingers to smudge it. Various tools work well for blending; try using a silicone spatula, a pencil eraser, a bristle paintbrush, a wet paintbrush, or a flat-ended cotton swab (found in the cosmetic section of most grocery and drug stores).
Use metallic, neon, pastel, glitter gel pens, and a white gel pen to highlight parts of your artwork. And don’t be afraid to use gel pens in tandem with other mediums. Crayons and colored pencils work great to fill in backgrounds. To create an unusual pattern, place a piece of paper on a material with an interesting texture—such as burlap, a flour sifter, or a leaf—and then rub a crayon or colored pencil over the top.
Experiment and enjoy
Creative gel-pen techniques can help you turn your coloring sheets into a feast for the eyes. Just as importantly, they can add fun to a favorite pastime. Remember, coloring isn’t supposed to be stressful. Relax, get creative, and have fun!
One day, while gazing at the night sky, a girl who wished she could fly suddenly turned into a beautiful bird. She flapped her wings and took off into the night sky, departing on an odyssey to many mysterious planets: a forest planet, a snowy planet, a flower-filled planet, a planet full of sweets, and a magical planet. Everywhere she goes, she meets the planet's interesting inhabitants.
Please note: I am reviewing the Japanese Version. You can find the English edition elsewhere but I can't comment on its quality or format.
Mysterious Planets is a book first published in Japan by Ai Kohno, a freelance illustrator from Tokyo. The book documents a journey through six imaginary planet before landing safely back in the final section of the book, The Girl's Room. Everything is written in Japanese apart from the titles pages of each planet, which are oddly English. The illustrations are charming and very whimsical in style, allowing you to escape reality for a little while and experience these fantastic fantasy worlds. Click the categories below to discover the delights of each planet.
the forest planet
the sea planet
the snowy planet
the flower planet
the sweets planet
the magic planet
the girl's room
The book is square in format and measures 25 x 25cm approx. It has a full gloss dust cover with quarter-wide French flaps, covering a thick recycled-cardboard-look cover displaying line art of all 6 planets. The paper has a light ivory colour, not quite cream, more off-white. It feels a little rough to the touch and I can confirm coloured pencils lay down fabulously making blends a dream, particularly using soft pencils. As this book is double-sided you will need to use pens which don't bleed-through, and I'm pleased to report that water-based pens do not shadow on the reverse side. The ink seems to glide across the surface of this paper rather than soaking in and pilling the tooth, which is a joy to experience and not something often found when using anything other than alcohol markers.
Unsurprisingly, for books of this quality and the caliber of illustrations you are going to be paying a hefty price- and that's before you add on the international postage cost. Usually these Japanese/Korean books have to be shipped in from the country of origin, but amazingly I have found a UK stockist of not only this book but lots more stunning colouring books from Asia! Check the bottom of this review for the link to buy. Postage is super cheap but the book is still more expensive than most, though it really is worth it if you love whimsical designs and colouring books from other parts of the world. I always prefer the original version to any English re-prints as I think the language barrier adds that bit of mystery & exoticism, enhancing the fact that the illustrations derived from a remote land.
Here is my finished page, coloured with Prismacolor pencils & PanPastel for the background.
I was given this book in exchange for an honest review. It is back in stock on 23/24th March 2017 at the link below:
Mysterious Planets by Ai Kohno
I'm a 28 year old mum of 2 from the UK who uses colouring to de-stress and develop my creativity. Join me in discovering new books and materials :)
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