Playing with Color

I had some spare time a few days ago and I sat down with my iPad and did some digital coloring. It’s been a while since I’ve done that, and it felt good to just play around.

I took some of my mandalas and colored them in. I like doing that better than just coloring the lines themselves, like I’ve done with some previous designs. I picked out a few of the ones I thought would be fun and just went at it.

I really like how this one turned out. The colors are bright and vibrant and it makes the various layers stand out more than they do in the original black and white drawing. Of course, then I had to throw it into iColorama and see how I could play around with it in that.

I added a texture and a new color overlay. There’s also an embossing effect to make it look raised. I love how it has more dimension and texture. This could be an old tile design or part of a vintage textile pattern. Pretty cool.

I also had time to color in another mandala. I was curious to see how this one went, because I really liked how the original black and white turned out.

This one doesn’t have a lot of contrast, but I’m still happy with how it turned out. I may try coloring it again with a different color palette and see if I like it better. Or maybe throw it into iColorama too and see how I can transform it. I still don’t know all the ins and out of iColorama, but I’m having a ton of fun playing around with it. 🙂

I’m Going Dotty

I forced myself to sit down this weekend and spend some time drawing and coloring. I needed to relax after all the craziness of last week. As I was scrolling through my Procreate gallery, I realized I hadn’t created any dot mandalas in a while, so I opened a new canvas and started working.

I’m still struggling with color palettes, but I decided to just push all those worries aside and start creating.

I’m still also struggling with the new editor forced upon us here at WordPress. I finally have a handle on copying serial posts (like the Monday Mandala series), but it appears as I write this post, that the issues with images in the block editor are still there.

Argh.

Anyhoo, I like the colors in this one, although I think I should have made the outer layers more detailed. Also, the gray layer kind of disappears, which makes the overall effect a bit odd – it looks like there is something missing, until you look really closely. After struggling with background colors for a bit, I decided just to move on.

So I started this diamond shaped mandala. Although I didn’t know it would be diamond shaped until I was done. 😀

I like the blues of this one and I think the balance of detail is nice. Now if I could just start to feel more confident in my color choices . . . :/

More Dot Mandalas

First, let me say that I am NOT a fan of the “new” Gutenberg editor that WordPress has gone to. For some unknown reason, and unlike the “classic” editor, when I add an image to my post, it doesn’t show up. If I add all my images to my media library first, and then add them to a post, they show up fine. Not the end of the world, but certainly irritating.

Anyhoo.

I found myself with some free time the other evening and decided to try some more dot mandalas in Procreate. I love how easy it is to control the size of the dots and to erase my (many!) mistakes. For now, I’ve been sticking with pre-made color palettes.

I like the purples and blues in this one, though I think I started too small in the middle. Or maybe I should have stopped a few layers sooner? I’m debating whether I want to offer these for sale as prints in my Etsy shop.

I was still having fun playing around, so I made a second mandala.

This one reminds me of cat ears. 😛 I like the color scheme, but not sure I’m happy with the final design. I could go back and play around with it some more, but I usually end up feeling like I should have just left well enough alone. So for now, this is it.

If I do offer them as prints (digital downloads) in my Etsy shop, I’m wondering whether I should sell them as-is, with the background, or if I should delete the background and let people choose their own. Or maybe both?

We’ll see what happens. Right now, I’m in the middle of sanitizing and cleaning the classrooms I will be in charge of this year – assuming school opens on time. Problems for another day!

Dot Mandalas in Procreate

I’ve been busy this week working at my job. Everything has to be pulled out, cleaned, and sanitized so that if/when school resumes this fall, all the toys are ready for the children. It’s a huge job, but the satisfaction of making progress on it has done wonders for my mood this week.

Even though I’ve spent nearly every day working, I’ve still managed to find time to explore more mandala art. I’m still drawing new ones for the Monday Mandala series, and I’m working on additional ones for my Etsy store (shameless plug). My diamond painting mandalas finally arrived and I’ve now finished all of those. I’ve been avidly watching YouTube videos on making dot mandalas. Using simple tools like a pencil, a Qtip, and a toothpick, I’ve seen people create some amazing art.

A few days ago, one of the planning YouTubers I follow demonstrated her newfound obsession with dot mandalas and she created one in Procreate. And I thought, Duh! Why haven’t I tried that? So I did. 😀

My first attempt was so awful I didn’t even save it. However, the next attempt was good enough to encourage me to keep going. I’ve mentioned before that I am not good at picking color palettes, so I used some palettes I had stored from previous projects.

I like the color palette and I’m happy with how it all came out. It did take some fussing with settings in Procreate to get the effect I wanted with the dots, but it worked.

The next attempt I got a little carried away. I didn’t realize until I was about halfway through the mandala that I had zoomed in WAY too much at the beginning, so the final mandala is too busy in the middle. But I’m learning from my mistakes.

The last attempt is my absolute favorite of the three, and a lot of that is because I love the color scheme of the design. It has a retro/vintage feel to it that I love. I’m going to keep experimenting with these and perhaps even put some of them up for sale in my Etsy shop as printable art downloads.

I’m debating whether to keep the backgrounds or offer just the mandalas themselves, so people can print them on whatever background they wish. In any case, I’m having a ton of fun drawing them and I can’t wait to make more.

Hitting Publish

Credit: Pixabay

I did it! I finally listed some of my coloring mandalas on Etsy. After attempting to add things here and becoming frustrated, I finally decided to just go ahead and list the mandalas on Etsy.

They are similar to my Monday Mandalas, but they are more detailed, since I drew them specifically for people to color. It was (unsurprisingly) easy to list the items on Etsy, and adding the files for download was simple. I spent more time creating the images for the listings than I did the actual listings themselves.

I’ve listed 5 mandalas to start, and I plan to add to them this week. If you’d like to check them out, you can find them in my Etsy store here. It’s all kind of an experiment at this point, since I haven’t really done any social media or marketing – mostly because I decided on the spur of the moment to just do it. 😛

It should be an interesting week for me – I’ve opened my Etsy shop finally, I bought more contrast paints to experiment with painting minis, and I bought the iOrnament app for more drawing options. iOrnament reminds me of iColorama – lots and lots of options, but it’s a bit overwhelming at first. I’ve been watching some tutorials to make some sense of it. Lots of good information, but I have a feeling I may still stick with Procreate for the majority of my drawing. I haven’t found anything that has that same line smoothing ability as Procreate.

Lots of changes heading my way – new stuff to learn, a new shop to run, and now WordPress is moving everyone over to the new block editor. I’m using it to create this post – so far, so good, except I miss seeing my word count at the bottom of the post. After some Google-fu, you have to click the information button at the top of your post in the block editor to see how many words you’ve written. Not the end of the world, but an annoying additional click.

Le sigh.

Ah well, if that’s the worst of the changes, I’m doing okay, right? I do appreciate that the new editor has lots of options the old one didn’t, change is just hard. Either that, or I’m just old. 😀

Abandoning Amaziograph

Amaziograph 3I’ve had a lot of fun playing around with the Amaziograph app – especially since it’s made for making mandalas.  It has a lot more options than Procreate in its radial symmetry, but I just can’t get over the shakiness of the lines.

That’s not Amaziograph’s fault – it’s mine, because I have shaky hands.  And, unfortunately, the older I get, the worse the tremors get.  With Procreate, I can adjust the line smoothing to account for that – with Amaziograph, I can’t.

So for making my mandalas, I’m going to stick with Procreate.  I’ll still use Amaziograph now and then, but it won’t be the go-to tool that I thought it would be when I got it.

I do have my eye on another program I discovered the other day, called iOrnament.  I haven’t purchased it yet, but I will in the next week or so.  After I’ve had a chance to play around in it, I’ll post something here.  It looks a lot like Amaziograph, with the options to do tessellations and such.

I saw a coloring book at the grocery store today titled ‘Kaleidoscope Coloring.’  It was a bunch of animals with zentangle doodles for coloring.  Guess I’ll add ‘kaleidoscope’ to my Etsy tags, lol.

Digital Coloring – Mandala 27

As I continue to draw mandalas, I’m still learning what elements lend themselves to coloring and how many details I should put in to make the final product more pleasing to the eye.

I’ve stated before that I suck at picking out color palettes, so I’ve saved lots of them to my iPad.  When I get ready to color, I can just swatch the colors from the color palette and everything hangs together.

Mandala_27_ColoredColoring in Procreate (and coloring in general) is very calming for me.  I can find my zen and just let everything else be while I work.  I had fun coloring this mandala, although I wish I had picked a color palette with one or two additional colors.  There are enough details that making it all work with my limited palette was a challenge.

I think it turned out well, though.  😛

Shaky

I wanted to try working on mandalas in Amaziograph again.  It has a lot of options that I just can’t easily replicate in Procreate.  So I spent some time fiddling around.

Amaziograph 2

Ok, weird.  Not sure why it’s cut off in the image, since it wasn’t that way in the program.  But I’ve already deleted the original, so – here it is.  😛

The inner parts are good, if kind of plain.  I was playing around with line weights, as you can see.  Unfortunately, Amaziograph doesn’t have the line smoothing like Procreate does.  So my occasional shakiness is more apparent than I’d like.

Maybe I’ll do some initial designs/drawings in Amaziograph and then push them over into Procreate and make the final images there.  That could work.

Mandala Fresco

More experimentation with digitally coloring the mandalas.  Anne over at Anne’s Immaterium had asked about using one of my designs in a D&D game, which I thought sounded fun.

I started thinking about how I might use them myself, and then I decided to see what they might look like.  So I colored in one of the designs in Procreate.

Mandala 30 Colored

Nice, but not exactly what I had in mind.  So, I opened iColorama and played around with various filters and things there until I had something I liked.

After a few false starts, here is what I ended up with:

Mandala 30 Frescoed

I like how it looks like a fresco or something you’d find painted on an old wall.  It looks like some of the paint has been worn off – by time, people touching it, who knows?