• Kathy

My Coloring Doesn't Look Like Theirs, What am I Missing?

Updated: Oct 9, 2020

Here I go, confessing more about me than I care to admit, but yes I am just an adult that has experienced the joy of life settling down enough to pick up a new interest and I chose coloring--hey it will be easy (it's just coloring after all) and the samples I've seen are oh so pretty! I had colored blissfully for a couple of years when one day I hear that little voice in my head asking me,

"am I coloring or am I making art"?

Well, what is going on in my head? Of course everything I'm doing is art. From the time I picked up that first Copic marker and put it to paper--it was wow . . . or so I thought.

I just couldn't shake that little voice in my head so I knew I needed to be doing something different. Like you, I headed off to the internet to find some coloring classes.

I completed a number of classes and was pleased with the results. The complexity of what I was doing was growing too. That little voice had been squelched.

Friends and online admirers would make wonderful comments about my work. They wouldn't just tell me I was talented, they said things like I was a natural. So hey, who was I to argue. I must be better than average at all this, right? With all this new found confidence I decided it was time to just grab my supplies and color something

all on my own. I spotted a wood mounted rubber stamp in my stash that spoke to me. I dusted off the ink pad, said a prayer it still had juice in it and made an impression on my paper. Then it happened.

My "I can color anything" train was stopped dead on the coloring tracks.

I didn't know what to do next. How do I make this look like my normal coloring? What colors do I chose? Where do I start? The questions were paralyzing. You know what I did next? I threw it away and went back to the internet to research my next class.

The little voice came back and this time it listened to my friend Frankie when she contacted me to talk about the fact she wasn't really coloring enough right now. Would I be interested in coloring with her.

So we came up with this idea that we would make a list of words that would prompt us to come up with a project to color.

We didn't even know what we were doing. But we started to pump out projects that surprised us. Some projects scared us. Other projects just gave us pure joy.

We thought we were coloring, but what we were doing was practicing. Yes, practicing. We weren't focused on a class sample because we didn't have one. We simply had a word and had to figure out how to turn that word into a work of art.

It wasn't until the end of the nine month project we had created together that the little voice in my head came back. It was

laughing and asking me, "hey, do you see what you just did? You figured out how to take an idea from conception to completion".

You see, my coloring is finally mine.

I figured out what it takes to color an image. Does this mean I don't take classes any more? Heck no. I love classes. But what I really love to do is look at the class project and figure out now how to put my own spin on it. It never gets old to have that feeling come over you when your project starts to come to life under your markers or colored pencils.

So let me ask . . . do you practice or do you just color? Do you want to pump up your coloring skills and make art? We can help here in The Practice Corner. Feel free to look around and please comment below to share with us if you are now thinking about adding practice to your coloring process.

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