Twilight Garden

After so much colouring envy I finally bought Maria Trolle’s Twilight Garden. This beautiful Swedish colouring book has been my latest obsession. I was determined to get as many pages done before I go on my trip. It was an absolute joy to colour. I was a bit intimidated at first, but after taking a few advanced tutorials I can imagine a colour scheme for every page.

Maria Trolle is a Swedish graphic designer, gardener and mother. She is a self-taught artist and does a lot of work for Swedish garden magazines and grocery chains. She draws inspiration from the flora and fauna in her garden. She lives just outside of Stockholm on a beautiful farm. She has a blog and website, called Trolle’s Garden, which is a collaboration with her husband, who is a Garden designer and Design director. Here you can find information on their current projects and images of their amazing garden.

Maria’s first colouring book was Blomstermandala, which was a 20-page poster book, filled with flower still lifes. She also made a postcard book with the similar images. After the success of these two book, she published a full-scale colouring book in 96 pages, in the same theme. This full-scale version of Blomstermandala was eventually republished in an English version,  Twilight Garden, which is the version I bought. Both versions have been incredibly popular in the colouring community. She also illustrated a children’s book,”Vivi söker en vän” (Vivi’s looking for a friend). This was also made into a colouring book under the same name. I have actually purchased this one and waiting to pick it up in Sweden in a few weeks. I’m so excited to see it!

The paper in this book is a lovely thick ivory colour. I didn’t find any bleed through using pencils and my Prismacolor blended really well on this paper. The images include flower still lifes, garden scenes with and without animals and some blacked in backgrounds.

This collection of pictures I coloured is in order of when I coloured them. As I mentioned I did use some tutorials. They were all from Chris Cheng’s Youtube channel. These were by far the most advanced tutorials I’ve ever done and I really learned a lot. So I tried to incorporate these new skills into the pictures I coloured on my own.

 

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Daydreams (Dagdrommar)

I finally started colouring a book that I had for a while but I was a bit intimidated to really start. Now that I’ve coloured a few pages I’m a bit more confident and hooked on this amazing colouring book by Hanna Karlzon.

Hanna is a Swedish freelance designer living in Umeå, Sweden. Everything she draws is by hand with pen and ink.  She designs patterns for interior design, wallpaper and textiles and also does commissions for magazines and other companies. Her work is quite unique and is inspired by nature, art nouveau, punk rock and 70’s design.

Hanna’s first colouring book, Daydreams was originally published in Sweden entitled Dagdrommar in May 2015. It has a hard and back cover and contains 96 beautifully illustrated pages to colour. The images are printed on both sides and the paper is high quality.

This book has been incredibly successful and is well known in the colourist world as a must-have book to add to your collection. Originally it was only available through the Swedish Pen Store, but now it is readily available outside of Europe from local online stores (see below).

Daydreams features her signature whimsical artwork of delicate flowers, beautiful girls, birds and small animals, interesting insects and forest homes. There is some repetition in her style of birds and insects, but each page is still unique and gorgeous.

Hanna has since released a two more colouring books, Summer Nights (Sommarnatt) and Magical Dawn (Magisk Gryning). She is also about to release a new colouring book Seasons (Tidevarv) in August 2017. Each of her colouring books has also been published in Artist Editions books and Postcards. Both formats feature 20 images from the books, on single-sided, oversized art card (Artist Edition) or postcard sized art card. Seasons will also be released in as 20 Postcard. Winter Dreams (Vinterdrömmar) is the Postcard book that hasn’t been released as a companion to a colouring book. Each of these books is authentic but keep within her style.

I absolutely love this book. The pictures are unlike any of the colouring books I already own and the paper is just heaven to colour on. I first saw a review of Daydreams by La Artistino and feel in love, but the postage from Sweden was too high. Once it became available on Book Depository I ordered it so I could do La Artistino’s tutorials on Colouring a face and Colouring Shiny Hair. I left this book for ages, feeling really intimated by it, but continually admiring other colourists work. So I finally picked it up again, did a few tutorials and then a few more pages on my own.

I have recently ordered Summer Nights (Sommarnatt) and Magical Dawn (Magisk Gryning) and Maria Trolle’s The Twilight Garden (Blomstermandala) I can’t wait to start colouring them, so stay tuned.

 

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Moana

I am in love with the new Disney movie, Moana. I recently took my daughter to see it in the cinemas and we have been singing the songs ever since. Our favourite is “Your Welcome”, sung by Dwayne Johnson. Octavia favourite word at the moment is ‘welcome’, which isn’t to be polite but rather demand we play it again and again and again.

What I love most about this movie is that there is no love interest for Moana and that she reflects a realistic body type. Don’t get me wrong, I love the classic princesses and I don’t begrudge the role of the prince and the slim figures of the princess. However, it is refreshing to see a change in the way woman are portrayed. I also love the amazingly, beautiful imagery. So much care was given to each scene to depict a realistic image of the Polynesian culture and gorgeous island landscape.

So many artists have paid homage to Moana in their own style. Here are a few of my favourites:

Kalisami (@karsallam), Yuduki (Yudukichi)Promise Tamang (@promisetamang), Ma xx S t e p h e n °o° (@maxxstephen)Activistic Artist (@activistic.artist)Julianna Maston (@juliannamaston)Elisa G.B. (@asilee_art), Daniel Kordek (@danielkordek)Linnéa (@pastel.ette)David Dias (@daviddias_arts)

I really wanted to also pay homage my new favourite Disney princess. I haven’t drawn anything other than doodles for years. When I was younger I was always drawing and painting. In my youth, I wanted to be an artist. although I was good in comparison to the other student I never felt I was really good enough. But since the adult colouring craze, I feel inspired to be creative again without any pressure.

I usually sketch by sight and never use any technique when I draw. So sometimes my drawings are a bit unsymmetrical. So I decided to get some help from a professional artist to sketch out Moana. There are so many videos tutorials to choose from on how to draw Moana on YouTube. I choose a video by Ellie Holt on her YouTube channel, Spilled the paint.

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Ellie Holt, Spilled the paint

I really enjoyed this tutorial. Ellie gave clear step-by-step instructions and her techniques can be easily replicated again for Moana or another princess. For the drawing  she uses a brown pencil to sketch it out, then went over in it with a black pencil and then again with a thick black marker. Lastly, she roughly coloured her with some coloured pencils and markers.

For my drawing I used pencil to sketch her out, then a black fine tip to go over the outline. After that I coloured her in Prismacolor pencils. For the background and texture of the hair I used this movie still (below). The paper I used was watercolour paper, that’s why it is a bit grainy as well. It took alot more layering to get the colour smooth on the paper.

image_f6e45c87.png So here you are. It’s not an exact replica but I’m happy with it. I feel more confident since doing this drawing and perhaps Moana will pop up again in one of my colouring books or I in a watercolour painting. I think next time I won’t do such harsh black lines as she looks more comic rather than realisitc. It’s was also hard to cover up or alter those lines once they were drawn in.

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If you love art but don’t feel like you can draw, I recommend you try out an online tutorial. You may be surprised what you can produce when you use some artist techniques.