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How to Make Money from Adult Coloring: 7 Proven Ways

The craze over adult coloring books has subsided, but there still is a significant demand or volume of sales for it in the book market.

If you are looking at creating your own, there is plenty of room to do that. Besides, you can always create a hybrid product that incorporates coloring designs into journals, planners, calendars, cards, bags, mugs, fabric, among others.

This opportunity should be a source of inspiration and motivation to you.

Coloring Practice: Fun but Expensive

Coloring is a pleasurable activity that brings significant health benefits to your mind and body. It works on releasing happy hormones to relieve you of stress, calm you down, let you sleep well, and maintain your level of energy even in stressful situations.

Yet, maintaining a coloring habit can be strainful to the pocket. Take these instances…

  • Coloring books. You don’t only buy one coloring book to work on. You buy more. You don’t only buy once but you buy every time one catches your eye or your favorite artist releases a new one.
  • Coloring supplies. Then, you need to buy your coloring supplies; not just any kind. You don’t want used ones but new. Because you color on a regular basis, your supplies get depleted and you need to replenish them.
  • Coloring events. You decide to join a network of local colorists who meet regularly. There is a “minimal” fee to attend, excluding food that you bring to share or buy at the venue.

Yeah, it’s fun but where does that take you?

What if you create your own designs?

What if you publish and sell them online or in offline bookstores or outlets?

What if you organize your own coloring events using your own designs?

How about opening your own online store and selling unlimited digital downloads of your artwork?

What if?

Have you thought about all these possibilities?

Why not?

7 Ways to Profit from Your Coloring Designs

Let’s look into seven profit centers for your own coloring designs.

What can you do with them?

How can you maximize earnings from your own designs?

Here are seven ways:

# 1 – Self-publish a physical book

When you create your own designs, publishing a physical book under your name is always a prime objective. These days, self-publishing is easy given the existing number of print-on-demand (POD) platforms. Popular POD companies that print your book on demand and ships them to you or your customers are as follows:

You may actively promote your books to your local bookshops, stores, and library, and sell them POD copies that you order yourself.

# 2 – Sell at your own store or shop

Setting up an online shop is easier now more than ever. You can do that through the following:

  • Self-hosted website – This is through your own website where you can set up shop to sell your coloring designs including branded PLR content
  • Subscription-based e-commerce platform – An example of this is Shopify where you pay monthly to set up shop for your products.

# 3 – Sell digital downloadable ebooks at other online shops

This is closely related to #2 but you are setting up shop in a platform that other companies are running. They give you a free space in their marketplace to sell your goods.

Here are popular ones to sell your coloring designs to:

# 4 – Drip content to your membership site

Here, you set up your own coloring book membership. Then, you use your coloring designs in PDF or zipped files to drip feed to your members.

 # 5 – Manage a coloring group or club

You may have participated in activities launched by coloring groups or clubs in your locality or zone. In this case, why not organize and launch parties for coloring artists, enthusiasts, and hobbyists and use your artwork or sell them your coloring pages or books?

# 6 – Build your subscriber list

You may give away your coloring ebooks or pages for free to attract people to your site. You can then upsell or offer them your other stuff.

Two things happen here:

  • First, you build your list as you get people to sign up to your offer and be a subscriber. For marketers, entrepreneurs, authors and anyone doing business, having access to subscribers via their email is important. It’s an effective way to keep in close contact with your target audience and customers.
  • Second, you create avenues to earn income. As you earn your subscribers’ “know, like and trust” relationship with you, it would easier for them to patronize you and your products.

# 7 – Earn affiliate commissions

Sprinkle affiliate links in your coloring ebook giveaways and you just might earn a nice commission from promoted products.

It’s best to put a disclaimer saying that you promote products you think might help them and that if they decide to buy using your links, you get a share.

Creative PLR: Same Profit Opportunities?

How about PLR designs that you buy?

Can you use them to take advantage of these seven profit opportunities?

First off, you have to be clear about what rights you get with your purchase. Private label rights basically give you the rights to attach your own brand or private label to the product bought or to its parts. That’s the very least you can do.

If you buy creative PLR content from me, for sure, you can:

  • Self-publish your physical book
  • Sell at your own store or shop online and offline
  • Sell downloadable digital ebooks at other online shops
  • Drip content to your membership site
  • Manage a coloring group or club
  • Build your subscriber list
  • Earn affiliate commissions.

Here’s a caveat:

[/] You must brand it as your own using your name, label and/or logo.
[/] You can modify this product in part or whole
[X] You cannot give away this product as is
[X] You cannot sell this exact product with PLR and claim as your own.

Cheers to all the possibilities with your creative PLR – big or small!

I would love to hear what you think about how you can profit from your coloring designs.

Journaling and Coloring: From Hobby to Creative Enterprise

I have been into journaling some 30 plus years ago, back when fancy journals weren’t in style. My journal was my go-to pal at various stages of my life.

And coloring? My interest in coloring started in early 2015 back when the adult coloring book market was flourishing. The books looked awesome, the designs to me were a source of envy. I thought “I must create art like that.”

I bought all sorts of coloring books, courses, apps, learning materials, and anything I could to get a grip on this thing called coloring.

I got a number of software applications that create designs automatically. They were okay but I wasn’t pleased with them.

To make the story short, I painstakingly learned to create my designs – from hand-sketching to transforming them into digitized print quality images.  I packaged my designs as coloring journals and published them at CreateSpace and Amazon. I also sold them at Fiverr and Etsy.

Since taking on my creative hobby, I have gained new meaning in life beyond being a work-at-home mom. Although I had creative streaks while at a young age, like all of us probably did, now I am confident about the idea that I am an artist.

Lessons from a Hobbyist

Here’s what I found out through the course of roughly four years pursuing my hobby:

  • First, it’s fun. It is like child’s play and enjoying a treat at your favorite candy store!
  • Second, it’s rediscovering my long-lost creative self again. It’s liberating.
  • Third, it blessed me with a strong sense of pride in my hands. It feels really good to let things come out of the realm of imagination and give it form.
  • Fourth, it can be a great source of income. I haven’t fully maximized my earning but I did earn something.
  • Fifth, it can be a life-long career especially when taken seriously so that it matures from simply just a hobby.

How to Transition from a Hobbyist to a Careerist

You know that a hobbyist is one who pursues a particular hobby.  A careerist, on the other hand, is one “whose main concern is for professional advancement, especially one willing to achieve this by any means.” (Source: Oxford Dictionaries)

It’s great to have a hobby. It keeps you up and going and always young at heart; but how about making a career or business out of it?

Why not? 

I am not there yet but I have learned valuable lessons that I live by, moving forward:

  • Have a goal. What do you want to achieve with what you have? Where do you want to be? How do you see yourself years from now?
  • Small steps matter. As a saying by Confucius goes, “It doesn’t matter how slowly you go as long as you don’t stop.” It’s also about practicing the Tortoise mindset: “Slow and steady wins the race.”
  • Practice, practice, practice. As you may have already known, practice makes perfect! It is also by practicing that you earn experience.
  • Learn from others. You don’t always have the answers nor the skills needed so you have to turn to others as a rich resource.
  • Develop your own techniques. You may copy or emulate how others do things. Let it be a start, but it should not be the end. There’s no place for stagnation in this dynamic world. Soon, you’ll discover that you are unique on your own. You can never replicate others nor can they replicate you.
  • Believe in yourself. It’s so easy to succumb to insecurity and self-pity upon seeing the remarkable works of others and how far they have gone. However, you should always believe in yourself. If you don’t, who would? No matter how well people cheer you on, it would all be for nothing if you run away from who you are and what you could be. As Jason Mraz’ song Details in the Fabric says, “Hold your own, know your name and go your own way… everything will be fine!”
  • Take action. After all is said and done, brilliant ideas are useless without action. Action makes things happen so go for it with the belief of success despite the odds.

So what now… or what are you waiting for?

If you’re a hobbyist, you may want to think about taking your hobby to the next level. However, if you are happy basking in the joy and solitude you get from your hobby, by all means, stay on with it. After all, you are the captain of your ship and there’s not one single path to everything.

But if you’re ready, why not?

It’s worth a thought, a try, or a challenge. For sure, everything starts with a single step.

You decide.

4 Cool Ways to Show Off Your Colored Pages

As an avid or casual colorist, you may have wondered what to do with your completed coloring pages.

Surely, you want to glance at them regularly to reminisce the moments you spent coloring – whether alone or with your community. You want to hold on to that earned sense of joy and gratitude at how coloring may have led you to make peace with yourself and others and be on your way to healing.  

And, yes, there is this thing called pride in your creativity and having completed a masterpiece.  

Is there a way to bask in that pride for much longer?

How can they continue to inspire you? 

How can you show them off (if that’s what you want)?

How can you maintain this connection with your finished art pieces on an ongoing basis?

How about giving them a makeover or a new home?

Certainly, they can’t remain incognito in the pages of your coloring books. Soon, they’d be forgotten and end up in your stockroom, garage, donation bin, if not in the trash can. That would be spell T-R-A-G-E-D-Y and D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R. 

Well, rejoice! It’s not the end of the world. There are plenty of ways to show off your work and if you have rights to brand them (as what PLR content provides), then you may leverage them for added income.  

4 Cools Ways to Show Off Your Coloring Pages

Here are simple ways to fix your situation:

First, Hang on Your Wall or Art Gallery

This is the simplest way to showcase your finished coloring pages. Frame them and hang them on your wall. If you want, create an art gallery to share with your family. If space is a concern, you always have the option of switching the pages out as new colored pages come in. 

Second, Create Cards 

You can create cards from your finished colored designs for all sorts of occasions – wedding, engagement, graduation, birthday, anniversary, housewarming, retirement, among others.

But then, who said that cards are merely for special occasions? Why not give them to say thank you, to celebrate a friendship, or for no reason at all?

Creating cards from your colored pages is simple – just in half for that old-fashioned, handmade look. If you want a more professional look, you could always photograph, scan and plug each one into a card creator or app.

Third, Make Bookmarks

You usually keep bookmarks for yourself but, hey, why not give them as gifts?

To create your bookmarks, cut your colored pages into bookmark sizes and shape. To avoid ripping, tearing and discoloration, you need to laminate them. After all, you want them to last for as long as possible.

Fourth, Use as Gift Wraps 

For something small to gift to someone, why not wrap it in one of your coloring pages! That’s a fun and creative way to wrap presents, isn’t it? You may also use them to wrap giveaway souvenirs for parties that you’re hosting. That would be cool.  

What do you think of these possible uses for your colored pages?

Have you done any of these?

Would you consider doing any one of them? 

Let me know what you think in the comments section below.  

Beyond Colors and Strokes: 4 Benefits of Adult Coloring

Coloring is not a new concept and has been around to as far back as the 1880s when the McLoughlin Brothers first published The Little Folks' Painting Book, in collaboration with Kate Greenaway (Wikipedia). 

It sure was a fun activity as a child back when life was simpler. As you matured, coloring became more than just fun but also a pleasurable escape and respite to an otherwise stressful life. 

It provides various spiritual, psychological, mental, and even social benefits.

Combined with journaling, which lets you go deep into your thoughts and emotions, coloring is even more powerful. 

Consider these benefits from adult coloring:

Benefit #1: Adult Coloring Calms You

Have you heard of amygdala? It is that almond-shaped section of the nervous tissue located in the temporal (side) lobe of the brain. In simplistic terms, it is that part of your brain that has to do with your “fight or flight response.”

The amygdala gets activated when you’re overwhelmed, overworked, and anxious. It gets worked up and leaves you feeling panicked.

Coloring helps calm the amygdala, letting you get on with a more positive life experience.

Benefit #2: Adult Coloring Relieves Stress

Stress isn’t always negative. It can be positive. It can compel you to focus on the more important things, take steps to correct a problematic situation, or motivate you to work harder and more efficiently. This is positive stress at its best.

When stress is overwhelming, it becomes negative. Negative stress occurs when you focus on things you can’t change in life no matter how hard you try. It stems mostly from worry, which is a wasted emotion.

Adult coloring takes your mind off the things you fear or worry about, and it helps you focus on the here and now. It allows you to feel calmer and less stressed. You might even walk away from your coloring pages with a renewed sense of energy and a newfound sense of peace.

Benefit #3: Adult Coloring Encourages Mindfulness

Coloring a page takes a great deal of time and effort. It takes precision and careful thought. The amount of invested time you put into coloring brings about mindfulness.

Mindfulness is a process that brings your attention to what’s happening at the moment, not the past nor the future. It’s a proven subtle way to help you focus and be genuinely present in the now.

Mindfulness, when you are coloring, happens while engaged with the following activities:

  • preparing your paints, pens and other materials
  • making your brush strokes
  • pushing your coloring pens onto the designs
  • sharpening your tools
  • and more. 

Benefit #4: Adult Coloring Improves Mental Health

Coloring is an excellent way to improve mental health. Through coloring, you are able to:

  • reflect on your life, both current and future
  • gain valuable insights
  • develop clarity about past experiences, current situations, and future directions
  • achieve confidence, security, and stability through your interactions with people sharing your common interest in coloring. 

Even if you aren’t anxious or too stressed, you can benefit from adult coloring. It’s designed to remind you of the simple pleasures of life.

Now, now…

You don’t need a ton of information to convince you of the power of coloring. You only need to do a page of adult coloring to realize that it’s not only addictive. It also does what this article promises! 

Create Adult Coloring Sheets: Learn from the Masters

The adult coloring book craze may have died down a bit but, hey, adult coloring is here to stay! 

If you’re a creative or an aspiring artist and wonder how you can create line art for coloring books as well as self-publish your own coloring book, I have just what you’re looking for. 

How to Make a Coloring Book: A Great Go-to Learning University

Four years or so ago, I was in your position. I knew nothing much so I went on a quest to learn the details of how to make a coloring book. There were a number of channels I went to but one made a mark. 

Why? 

Learning was so easy to learn with all these features: 

  • videos are short, quick and easy to digest
  • relevant, downloadable resources
  • practice assignment to hone your skills and get guidance
  • a project gallery to showcase your work-in-progress and completed work
  • access to an active and supportive community of like-minded people
  • professional answers to your questions, concerns, and requests.

A big initial come on for me what that it didn’t cost me an arm and leg to enroll in them.

It’s so popular among artists, crafters, art enthusiasts, hobbyists, entrepreneurs, and teachers (though not much with internet marketers).

That learning platform is Skillshare!

Skillshare is a “learning community of creators and makers. Anyone can join.” Learners may be teachers and teachers may be learners.

“Skillshare is to unlock the world’s creativity. We believe that everyone is creative, and that giving people tools to harness their creative power has the potential to change lives for the better. We’re dismantling the traditional barriers to learning so that anyone, anywhere in the world, can learn whatever they set their minds to.”

Let’s dive in onto courses to related to adult coloring books.

Learn How to Make a Coloring Book: Awesome Bite-Sized Courses

Course # 1 – Make Your Own Coloring Page

Ria Sharon teaches this bite-sized course on how to make coloring book page. She’ll show you exactly how she creates her coloring pages, including the following details:

  • what supplies to use
  • where to draw your inspiration from
  • how to come up with your sketch
  • how to ink your sketch
  • how to enhance or polish your work

It’s only 22 minutes long, and if you speed up the videos, you’ll be amazed at how much you learn in a short time. Then, you could replay them to refresh your memory or follow along.

See for yourself how learning with Ria’s course is a breeze!

Course # 2 – Easy Coloring Book Design: How to Create Your Own Hand Drawn Coloring Pages

This 36-minute premium course is from one of my favorite instructors, Shelley Hitz, artist, illustrator and author coach. 

This course has nine topics, as follows: 

  • Introduction to Easy Coloring Book Design
  • Supplies Overview
  • Brainstorming the Text and Images for Your Design
  • Start with a Pencil Sketch of Your Text
  • Creating Your Text in a Word Document
  • Add Images and Patterns
  • Time to Ink Your Design
  • Case Study
  • Your Next Steps

Shelley made this course easy with her clear, simple and short demonstrations. 

Course # 3 – Doodle Time! Make Your Own Coloring Book Page for Watercolors 

In this premium 14-minute course, Jenn Coyle teaches you how to make your coloring book page.

You learn how to do the following:

  • draw your coloring book page
  • digitize and vectorize your work
  • print it out and color with watercolor.

Check out the introduction for a free taster of the course. 

Jenn delivers it in a succinct style that makes learning fun and easy.

Check out Jenn’s course.

Course # 4 – Swear Words Coloring Book

This category on swear words was on Amazon’s best sellers in Coloring Books for Grown-ups for such a time.

Creating an adult coloring book on swear words may not appeal to you like it didn’t for me. However, your adult coloring book may be something else other than swear words. How about on gratitude, forgiveness, happiness, or anything inspirational?

The point of learning from this course is the technique of creating the coloring page. It runs for only 23 minutes with the option to speed it up by twice the normal speed. 

There are five videos in all, covering the following:

  • Introduction
  • Set Up Workspace and Artboard
  • Writing Your Swear Word
  • Creating an Amazing Background
  • Coloring Your Swear Word on Adobe

Don’t miss Aerie’s course for all it’s worth.

Course # 5 – Create a Botanical Alphabet

Peggy Dean demonstrates in 30 minutes how you can create a botanical alphabet for your coloring book, cards, planners, journals, workbooks, and other products you may wish to use them on.

The course has six videos, as follows:

  • Introduction 
  • Tools and Materials
  • The Botanical Alphabet
  • Adding Patterns
  • Adding Colors
  • Project Time

This link should take you to Peggy Dean’s course.

Course # 6 – You Can Self-Publish a Coloring Book

What do you do after you have created your adult coloring pages? You may package them as a downloadable digital book to share to friends or sell. More than that, go self-publish them.

Katie Cannon shows you the shortest path to do in this 46-minute course “You Can Self-Publish a Coloring Book”:

The course has only six videos:

  • Introduction
  • Supplies and Project Overview
  • Setting Up Your Book in Publisher
  • Setting Up Your Cover with Adobe Illustrator
  • Uploading CreateSpace.

Check out Katie’s class now.

There are actually tons more of relevant courses from over 22,000 course and growing! 

Action: The Key to Make a Coloring Book

If there are more bits of information or skills that you want to learn, you may scour them in Skillshare.

Personally, I can’t get enough of Skillshare. It’s the only learning platform that has taught me the specific skills that I wanted to learn, in a way that suits my needs and lifestyle.

Check out these courses at Skillshare. You won’t regret.

Soon, you’ll see your own adult coloring books lining the shelves of bookstores or serving you in various other ways.

What are you waiting for?

Learn the needed skills on how to make a coloring book.

Please let me know how this post is of help to you. 

Have you already created your own coloring book or just starting out and want to make one? 

Start a Coloring Practice in 3 Steps

Coloring is an inexpensive, easy, and fun way to de-stress and unwind.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed or under the weather, coloring can make you feel better. It can clear your mind of clutter and make you feel calmer and more in control.

You may feel a bit silly, confused, or even a little embarrassed to begin coloring as an adult; but, hey, coloring is an “in” thing among adults and even if the adult coloring book industry has dipped in sales, it still is a major player and won’t disappear anytime soon. Perhaps, not ever.

Getting started may be the hardest part if you’re a beginner but once you realize just how peaceful and calming coloring is, it may be hard for you to stop.

3 Steps to Start Your Coloring Practice

Here are three simple steps to start coloring:

1) Get a Few Coloring Supplies

You don’t need any fancy supplies to start coloring. In fact, you don’t need much of anything to color.

To start with, get a blank sheet of paper, a pen or pencil, draw your design or image, and add colors from crayons or pens you already have.

I bought my coloring supplies from a local art store when I started coloring. They were quite expensive but since my adrenaline was high for coloring, I didn’t mind.

You don’t have to take that route. There are many inexpensive and reasonable options, as follows:

First, if you already have a personal collection, use it. Look around. You may not have realized it but what you’re looking for may just be right under your nose.

Second, if you’re a mom like me, scour your kid’s supply box or bags for crayons, markers, coloring pens, or paints. I have three kids and over the years, we have accumulated a bunch of coloring pens, markers, pencils, pastels, and paints. We have already discarded a whole lot but still have more.

Third, hunt for used coloring supplies at your local thrift shops.  They would be in used condition but not completely tattered. In one of my trips to Value Village, I found a set of Grumbacher Deluxe Opaque Watercolors at $7.99 Cdn. A brand new set sells at $49 Cdn or $35.99 US. It was a great find.

Fourth, go to your dollar store. There are lots there.

There’s no stopping you from buying fancy coloring supplies. However, if you’re just starting out or simply testing the waters, go for used, discounted or inexpensive ones. You can then go premium as you progress in your coloring practice. You save a handsome lot that way.

2) Get Yourself a Coloring Book

Finding an adult coloring book these days is easy. If leaving the house is an ordeal, shopping online is a convenient way to go. Shop around town and find one at your bookstores, shops, department stores, or grocery. You may even find one at your local thrift shop as I did. Have a look at what I found in one of my treasure hunts. 

3) Sit Down and Start

Find a comfortable spot where you can do your coloring. Sit down and color.

Keep in mind that:

  • You are alone with yourself (except when in a coloring community).
  • No one can judge you nor tell you what to do.
  • There is no rule to follow – not even rules in color combination – except yours.
  • You don’t have to be perfect in anything – strokes, colors, time, musings, emotions, outputs.
  • You are accountable to no one.
  • You need not show your artwork to anyone if you feel uncomfortable doing so.
  • Your process is your own.

Know that there is no right or wrong way with coloring. You do as you please with what goes on while coloring. What you get out of it is a personal thing.

Why don’t you try it, if you haven’t yet? See how it goes, how it feels, and how it works.

If you are already into it, please let us in on your experience:  How did you get started? What steps did you follow? How did it go?

Thanks for dropping by!

A 13-Step Guide to Create Your Own Coloring Pages: Not as Hard as You Think!

The craze over adult coloring books has subsided but there still is a significant demand or volume of sales for it in the book market.

If you are looking at creating your own, there is plenty of room to do that. Besides, you can always create a hybrid product that incorporates coloring designs into journals, planners, calendars, cards, bags, mugs, fabric, among others.

This opportunity should be a source of inspiration and motivation to you.

Your Coloring Hobby Need Not Be Expensive

Coloring is a pleasurable activity that brings significant health benefits to your mind and body. It works on releasing happy hormones to relieve you of stress, calm you down, let you sleep well, and maintain your level of energy even in stressful situations.

Yet, maintaining a coloring habit can be strainful to the pocket. Take these for instance:

  • Coloring books. You don’t only buy one coloring book to work on. You buy more. You don’t only buy once but you buy every time one catches your eye or your favorite artist releases a new one.
  • Coloring supplies. Then, you need to buy your coloring supplies; not just any kind. You don’t want used ones but new. Because you color on a regular basis, your supplies get depleted and you need to replenish them.
  • Coloring events. You decide to join a network of local colorists who meet regularly. There is a “minimal” fee to attend, excluding food that you bring to share or buy at the venue.

Yeah, it’s fun but where does that take you?

What if you create your own designs?

What if you publish and sell them in online shops or offline bookstores or outlets?

What if you organize your own coloring events and use your own designs for participants to color?

What if you open your own online store and sell digital copies of your artwork?

What if?

Have you thought of all these possibilities?

Why not?

The possibility of creating your own coloring pages to feed your hobby may not be for you. You may not have the skills, inclination, motivation, or openness to do it… and all you really want is just to color. 

That’s fine. 

However, if you do, then this is for you! 

How to Make a Coloring Book? One Page at a Time!

To reach a destination, you always start with a single step. That’s also how you create a coloring book – one step at a time. 

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. ~Lao Tzu

Before I came up with a finished digital image of a cancer-stricken woman, I had an image of her in my mind. I then sketched her with a pencil, occasionally erasing parts that didn’t go well. 

I inked it, scanned, and went through various other activities to achieve the result I want. 

Voila! Done! 

I drew other women like the Geisha, Ndebele woman, Chinese, and Afro, following the same process that I learned from others then tested and polished to achieve the results I want. My other illustrations also followed the same process. 

13 Steps to Make a Coloring Page

Through the years that I’ve been creating line art, I’ve come to settle on a personal creative process that is an iteration of those I saw others do and those I learned from experience. 

My process involves pretty much nine steps, as follows:

1. Conceptualize

This is a quick process that does not require much thinking. It is here where I think about what to create based on a theme, topic or idea.

At times, this process can be unnecessary as creating a coloring page can be random or from out of the blues, when inspiration strikes. 

2. Research (Optional)

This is an optional process that I do when I lack knowledge or information on something I like to focus on.

For instance, I search online, the library, or my collection of books, when I need quotes to use. When I drew an image of an African Ndebele woman, I researched online about the tribe particularly on the dominant facial features and attire of their women. Drawings of flowers can be based on imagination or stock information, but when needing accuracy on specific aspects, research comes in handy. 

3. Sketch

This is when I put pencil to paper to draw what’s in my mind. Sketches could be a product of conceptualization and research but it can be anything random. It can even be doodles. Do whatever works for you.

For supplies, I often use Staedtler HB pencil. There are many brands to choose from, including pencils kids usually use at school. There is no hard and fast rule for this, only that which works.

4. Erase

This goes hand in hand with sketching and is done to delete mistakes or unwanted strokes.

For this, I use the kneaded eraser or putty rubber.

Kneaded erasers can be shaped by hand for precision erasing, creating highlights, or performing detailing work. They are commonly used to remove light charcoal or graphite marks and in subtractive drawing techniques. However, they are ill-suited for completely erasing large areas, and may smear or stick if too warm. (Wikipedia)

I use to like Staedtler’s retractable eraser but supply for the refill is hard to find and they leave residues or shavings all over. The kneaded eraser doesn’t have this kind of mess although it can smear and get sticky with aging and hot weather. 

5. Ink

I ink my drawing using Sakura’s Micron ink pens with the thickness of either 01, 05 or 08. I have tried other brands but the Sakura Micron pens work best for me.

After inking, I discover remaining pencil marks that I either erase with the kneaded eraser or clean up at Adobe Photoshop. 

6. Digitize

This is where your scanner comes in handy. I scan my images with the following settings:

  • Color format: black and white (instead of grayscale or color)
  • File type: JPEG
  • Brightness: 100%
  • Resolution: 1200 DPI.

If your scanner can only do 600 DPI, that’s fine, too. Others recommend a resolution that’s higher than 1200 to capture the details; however, my scanner can only do until 1200 DPI and I have no problem with that.

7. Clean Up

Now that I have a digitized copy of my image, I go to my favorite photo editing software, which is Adobe Photoshop, to clean up my images. I have tried other applications but I always go back to Photoshop even though I pay a monthly fee for subscription to Adobe’s suite of tools. It’s just a personal preference but if finance is a concern for you, or you don’t have Photoshop skills nor the patience to learn it, use whatever works for you. 

Clean up involves any one or all of the following:

  • Erasing pencil marks and unwanted elements in the digitized image
  • Smoothening the lines
  • Thickening or thinning the lines
  • Adding or subtracting elements
  • Compositing or combining images.

8. Vectorize (Optional)

Vectorizing an image is one that I almost always do it because I love that clean look. I use Adobe Illustrator for this. I simply drag my image from Photoshop over to Illustrator then click image trace. I then do the needed adjustments to create the look that I want.  

The finished product from Adobe Illustrator is a vector image when saved in SVG. Vector, unlike raster, images are those that can be scaled to any size without pixelation or loss of quality. However, my purpose for vectorizing is just to achieve a clean look. At the end of it, my coloring pages are saved in non-vector formats. 

This process of vectorizing is optional but recommended to give your images that crisp, clean and professional look.

9. Save in Your Desired Format

Once done with vectorizing, I drag back my image to Photoshop and save it in preferred formats. I always do JPEG and PDF for my coloring pages, but if an image requires transparency, I create a PNG file. In special cases, I save an image in SVG format at Adobe Illustrator if a vector image is needed. 

Use this guide for familiarity with file formats acronyms:

  • JPEG – Joint Photographic Experts Group
  • PNG – Portable Network Graphics
  • SVG – Scalable Vector Graphics
  • PDF – Portable Document Format
  • TIFF – Tag Image File Format.

I don’t normally save in TIFF format. 

To save on time, I always do formatting in bulk, not by piece. 

10. Test print

I print out a copy of my pages, usually just a sampling, to see how well they look.

11. Review

I review the test prints to check on the following:

  • Font type
  • Font size
  • Spacing of text
  • Adequacy of allocated space
  • Margins
  • Clarity of message
  • Thickness of line art
  • Placement of elements
  • Balance
  • Grammatical errors
  • Typographical errors. 

12. Enhance (Optional)

I do the needed enhancements after printing test copies of the pages. Otherwise, they are good to go.

13. Compile

When I have completed all the pages I need for one document, say this 31-Day Gratitude Coloring Journal, I bring them over to a publisher or word processing application. I use Microsoft’s Word or Publisher for this. When dealing with images only, I also use Adobe’s Acrobat. 

When I have everything in place, I save the document in two formats:

  • Native file format – Microsoft Word may be saved with .doc or .docx extensions while Microsoft Publisher is .pub. You need the native file formats so you can edit or refer back to the original document. 
  • PDF format – Files in PDF format are handy for sharing files in an easily readable form as well as publishing to platforms (i.e. Createspace) that require a PDF file. 

This process is what works for me. You may try it as is or tweak it for your own good. Again, whatever works is best! 

If already creating your own coloring pages, how do you do it? What process or steps do you take?

If not yet, is creating your own coloring pages something you would try?

I would love to hear what you have to say about this. 

Please share your comments below to enrich this post. Thank you!

Journal: Your Personal Companion
Dec 03, 2018

Journal: Your Personal Companion

This is unlike an accountant’s, academic or scholarly journal.

A journal is a written, personal account, expression, creation, illustration, log, record, monitor, chart, chronicle, doodle, presentation, documentation, organization or diary of what’s going on in you.

How Your Journal Should Look

Keeping a chic journal surely inspires and motivates to start and pursue a journaling habit.

You may use a textured leather-bound classic journal or a spiral-bound floral-inspired and colorful one. You have plenty to choose from.

I have used simple, lined notebooks over the years, back when journals were not in vogue.

I do have the fancy ones but there’s something about how they look that stops me from journaling. Weird, I find pleasure in just looking at them.

Different folks, different strokes…

Your choice of journal is preferential.

Moreover, how your journal looks is really immaterial.

What gets written on your journal

How often or regular you write

How engaged and committed you are to journaling

How you experience the process of journaling

Those are the more substantial points in relation to keeping a personal journal.

Personal Journal: A Mirror of You

With everything that gets into its pages – the beautiful and ugly, good and bad, truths and half-truths and what not, your journal really is a mirror of you. It speaks tons of you.

Your journal is yours.

You own it.

It is yours to keep today, tomorrow and for years to come.

You decide what goes in, what comes out of it, and where it takes you.

Journaling is an adventure and your journal is your personal companion in this trip.

 

5 Popular Journaling Techniques for Beginners

5 Popular Journaling Techniques for Beginners

Journaling is a free world to explore. There is no right or wrong way to do.

However, there are others who have come a long way to show how they do it. Following are 5 techniques, models or styles to choose from:

1 – Freestyle Journal Writing

Freestyle journal writing is a no holds barred kind of writing.

It is done your way –  unrestricted, non-restrictive, not time-bound, unadulterated, uncensored, unstructured, non-directed, and uncontrolled.

It may be random, though not always and not as a general rule.

You write without strict consideration (or serious thought) of the following:

  • what to write (topic or theme)
  • why write (goal)
  • how long to write (duration)
  • how often to write (frequency)
  • how fast you write (speed)
  • what order or guide to follow (structure)
  • where to write (place)
  • what to write on or with (material)
  • how to write (format or presentation)
  • when to write (time)
  • how much to write (length)
  • how to write (tone).

The bottom line is - journal in your own terms.

2 – Guided Journaling

As the term implies, guided journaling follows a guide, model or blueprint.

You get directions by way of:

  • prompts
  • instructions
  • guidelines
  • structure
  • topics
  • themes
  • templates
  • questions
  • patterns
  • examples
  • quotes
  • spaces
  • dots
  • timing
  • reminders
  • ticklers.

Here’s an example.

For a 30-day gratitude journal, you get leads on what to write about on each day of journaling.

You may be asked to list down 3-5 things that you are thankful for identify concrete ways or specific actions to express gratitude.

For inspiration, you find quotations on top or below a number of lined pages.

Blank spaces are provided for doodles or drawings.

In general, you follow a guide for each day of journaling.

3 – Art Journaling

Journals are great to express creativity, whether done through free journal writing or guided writing.

However, there’s a third way that has grown in popularity among artists and non-artists alike.

It is art journaling.

Art journaling is keeping a visual or graphic journal or diary using art, imagery and text.

Graphic art is touching, moving and powerful.

An art journal is usually peppered with words or phrases, drawings, doodles, sketches, paintings, charts, cut-outs, photos, shapes, stickers, symbols, quotes, conversations, poems, songs, stories, patterns, graphic marks, and whatever feels good to be on the journal pages.

To start your art journaling practice, you need whatever art material that’s handy like:

  • Writing materials – pencil, ink pen, markers, paper, notebook, cards, post-it-note, journal, pastel, gesso paint
  • Coloring materials – paint, watercolor pens, colored pens, gel pens, glitters, charcoal, dye, paint brush, gel printing plates
  • Graphics materials – cut-outs, magazines, photos, illustrations, stickers, washi tapes, stamps
  • Cutting materials – scissors, cutter, knife
  • Gluing materials – paste, glue, tapes, stickers.

Remember: Except for your pen and paper (or journal), everything else is optional. 

Artistic or flat?

Colored or plain?

Clean or messy?

Planned or random?

Comprehensible or not?

They are immaterial.

What counts is expressing (or making sense of) what you think and feel in graphics and visual form.

4 – Bullet Journaling

Bullet journaling is a way of keeping track of things you want and need to be done following a structure or system.

Read more about bullet journaling here.

5 – Bible Journaling

Bible journaling has become a popular way of keeping a journal.

For this, you only need your bible and a pen. Art materials such as those detailed in the art journaling technique are optional.

The main idea is to find spiritual inspiration in the Bible or to let the Bible speak to you and give you guidance.

You then illuminate on the message by interpreting the bible verses in an artistic or creative way. These may be one or all of the following:

  • highlighting important verses
  • drawing
  • doodling
  • painting or coloring
  • embellishing.

Here are simple steps to do bible journaling:

  • Pray. This is where you seek guidance or inspiration on anything you wish.
  • Find a bible verse. You may do a page every day, randomly open a page or select a verse, or start with a familiar or meaningful verse.
  • Read. Read the verse or page that you have selected.
  • Reflect. Pause for inspiration or guidance.
  • Do art. You may start by sketching your idea first then outlining and coloring them.

These steps may seem daunting but they’re really not.

Besides, you may innovate or come up with your own.

The Best One

Among the techniques presented, which one appeals to you?

What possibilities do you see for yourself?

Perhaps you have your own way… or why not come up with one?

These are just five of the countless ways of journaling; say, if there were a billion people who are into journaling, there can be a billion ways to do it.

Again, there’s no right or wrong way with journaling; not even a fixed way to do it.

What’s important is for you to start journaling, commit to it, and keep doing it for as long as you can.

You’ll be amazed at just how much you get out of journaling.

For tips on how to journal, read this post.

 

 

Daily Gratitude Practice: 9 Easy Ways to Nurture Thankfulness

Daily Gratitude Practice: 9 Easy Ways to Nurture Thankfulness

We are all familiar with more ways than one on how to practice gratitude; however, we either forget to do so, find it uncomfortable, icky or cheesy, or simply take it for granted.

If that sounds like you, why not start small and let the habit grow into you.

The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings. ~Eric Hoffer

You never know what wonders it would do, to you and others.

How Can You Practice Gratitude in Your Daily Life?

Consider these practical ways to express and show thankfulness where it is due, and reap your rewards of positive aura from feeling joyful, peaceful, contented and forward-looking.

#1 – Write a “Thank You” Letter or Note

There is probably someone in your life right now that you need to thank. It is best that you take time to send them a handwritten letter of thanks. This adds more meaning, especially at this time when reaching out to people is as easy as pushing a virtual button. The time that you take to express your feelings by writing them down means more lasting rewards than using electronic media.

However, if this feels like an ordeal, go ahead and send a “thank you” post-it-note, text message, email, private message at Facebook (via Messenger), or whatever means that doesn’t intimidate or scare you from expressing thanks.

#2 – Create a Gratitude Calendar

On your gratitude calendar, write down 3, 5 or 10 things you are grateful for each day. Identify people who have touched or moved you in some way. After writing them in your calendar, read them out loud. Keep this calendar where you can see it constantly.

#3 – Keep a Gratitude Journal

Instead of just jotting down on a gratitude calendar, take it further with a journal where each day you express your thankfulness with just a list, detailed expression, or art. Learn how you can cultivate thankfulness through a gratitude journal HERE.   

#4 – Say It Out Loud

Each day, say “I’m grateful for you” to important objects, events and people in your life. Saying thank you to objects like your purse, comb, mirror, notebook, pen, or dress may sound weird or silly. But try it anyway. You’ll be amazed at how much energy it gives you to thank things that serve their purpose 24 hours a day with not a smirk, grunt, cursing or complaining.

#5 – Practice “One Person a Day” Gratefulness

Take a different friend, family member, acquaintance, coworker or service provider each day of the year. Call that person and tell him or here how grateful you are for their presence in your life. You may hug the person, if that’s fine for you. This works a couple of ways. It lets people know that you care about them and appreciate them, and it also forces you to expand your circle of influence.

#6 – Say “Thank You” for Your Meal

Many people in the world don’t eat for days or are uncertain if they could even have water, but you may be more blessed than them in that respect.

You have several choices as far as what food to eat, how much, and when. You could try all sorts of expensive diets – paleo, vegetarian, vegan, keto, gluten-free – not because you have to but because you can afford to. You bulk buy, food binge, and go restaurant-hopping. You discard food that doesn’t suit your taste as easy as a snap. You get what I mean.

Whether you have an abundance of food or eat sparingly, express gratitude for the food you put into your body.

#7 – Give or Donate

You may lament the fact that you don’t have as many clothes, pairs of shoes or possessions as you would like. Find someone who has less than you. Give them something of yours. Perhaps, donate to your local charity, church, food bank or thrift shop. Collect your recyclable bottles and cans and hand them to people who depend on them for their income.

Doing these acts of kindness can make you realize how fortunate and blessed you are.

#8 – Share Your Expertise

Sometimes, all people need is a little boost in knowledge and skills to make a significant difference in their life.

If you are good at cooking, sewing, computing, writing a job application letter, or cutting hair, why not go to local community organizations or even schools to pass on your expertise to others? You may have worked years to achieve that level of proficiency but, hey, we all start somewhere, don’t we?

#9 – Let the Most Important Person in Your Life Know That You Appreciate Them

Go to the nearest mirror. Ask – Who is that person staring back at you? That is the person you should be most appreciative of.

You obviously love your friends and family, but you need to express self-love first before you can form the deepest relationships with others. Frequently look yourself in the eyes and express gratitude for who you are and what you have given yourself.

Tips to Reinforce Your Gratitude Attitude

What you do depends a lot on what goes on in your mind and heart. We’re talking of values and attitudes here.  To give you a boost in that respect, here are some helpful tips:

Tip #1 – As soon as you wake up in the morning, give thanks that you have another day to live. 

Tip #2 – Use all your senses to discover things to be grateful for. Touch. Feel. See. Smell. Taste. Hear. Live. 

Tip #3 – Smile and feel the warm sensation of positivity engulf your body.

Tip #4 – When you catch yourself thinking negatively, shift to positive mode immediately. 

Tip #5 – Rather than focusing your attention inward, look outward and realize what others have done for you.

Tip #6 – Keep a gratitude journal at your bedside. Use it at the same time each day or night.

Tip #7 – Keep “Be Grateful” sticky notes at places that you frequent at home and work.

Tip #8 – Have a list of “gratitude quotes” to refer to each day.

Tip #9 – Find a partner to practice thankfulness each day.  

How about you?

What ways do you express your gratitude?

What tips can you add to this list to spread the positive habit of daily gratitude?

Please feel free to share what you’ve got in your pocketful of wisdom!