Sunday, November 8, 2015

Life of Colors

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Coloring books are one of the "in" thing this year. And me, being an explorer that I am, just had to "try" this trend. Guess what, I’m actually enjoying it!
 

Two of my own coloring books.
Back in high school, I belonged to the arts club but I wasn't into drawing, I was into painting. But oil painting is expensive and as I grew older, I slowly abandoned the practice. Actually, I let go of art entirely and focused on... work. *sigh*

It all started with my colleagues at work who bought adult coloring books. I saw how pretty the illustrations of Paris, cafe, gardens, and animals were. It's funny how my work brought me back to art. My career is very far from the artsy creativity; it's more on thinking and analysis. Hehehe~

When my sister came to visit recently, she brought along patterns of mandalas which she happily shared with me. I bought a 12-piece coloring pencil set and started on a simple dream catcher pattern. Then, I found myself coloring non stop, forgetting time, and just letting my right brain flow.



After the Dream Catcher, I started on this mandala

So, my coloring journey began.

You can use different media in your coloring book. Watercolor, oil pastel, colored pens, and even crayons are just some examples. Hey, it's your coloring book, right? My personal preference is a 24-piece coloring pencils set. It's the commonly used medium for coloring books and it doesn't cost a lot. 


My 24 colored pencils
From simple mandalas, I decided to go for more challenging ones. Those that don't take two hours to finish, but days. At first I was hesitant when I saw how difficult and detailed the patterns were, take for example, Johanna Basford's Secret Garden.

Some challenging patterns in Secret Garden
However, as I started on intricate patterns, I realized that you just have to take each part one at a time. That way, it becomes easier to fill in. Just one simple step at a time, one leaf, one flower, at a time.

I just let myself go when I color. Sometimes, I color it plain, sometimes with gradient effects. It's just depends on my current state of mood. No pressure... I just choose colors at random. Who cares if I color the leaves red, right? If my colors go beyond the lines, I just let it be.

In the end, I always get surprised at the result... a masterpiece borne out of days of wavering moods and states of mind.


A photo posted by Angel Mariel (@myangelmariel) on


 

Sure, there are mobile coloring apps but I enjoy doing it for real. It's the strokes of my hand, the result of the pencil on paper, and the blend of colors that relaxes my mind. It's a nice retreat after a stressful day at work or after fighting through the traffic jam. The trick is, to just let your sub-consciousness guide you. Isn't that what therapy is all about?

Funny thing is that... as I color, a lot of ideas come to mind. What the next book to read, what new movie to watch, what to do tomorrow. But after all those things, all I end up is doing more coloring! Hahaha~

I promise I will buy more sets of colors of pencils once I've decided to get serious with this new hobby! Or maybe once I'm finished with every single intricate pattern in Secret Garden, Enchanted Forest, or Alice in Wonderland. *wink*wink*

 Are you into coloring books, too?



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