Tips On How To Color

Color Outside the Lines – Tips for Adult Coloring Books

Adult coloring books are a hot new trend that’s allowing everyone from millennials to nursing home residents to relax, slow down, and enjoy a little bit of art therapy. If you’re having a little bit of trouble figuring out how to jump into this hot new trend, but still feel like it might be good for you, we’ve composed a few tips for you to consider.

Let’s look at a few tips for those new to the adult coloring/art therapy trend:

Protect Your Coloring Page

Once you’ve started a page, you’re likely going to feel strongly about the amount of work you’ve put into it. Consider putting a piece of plain white paper on top of your art, as well as behind it, so that any other coloring that you do in your book won’t bleed through. This is especially true if you use mediums that transfer such as crayons or colored pencils, or bleed through paper, like markers or gel pens. This “buffer paper” allows your colors to stay precisely where you put them, keeping your artwork safely where you want it.

Purchase the Best Materials You Can Afford

If that’s a pack of Crayola colored pencils and a drugstore coloring book, so be it. You’ll still be able to enjoy all of the psychological benefits that coloring has to offer. However, if you’re feeling flush and wondering if you should spring for the Prismacolor pencils, the answer is always yes. Trust us, you’ll be able to tell the difference. While the benefit comes from the act of the art, not from the tools you can afford, you’ll be able to recognize good quality artists’ tools when you feel them.

Follow Tutorials to Learn New Skills

If you’re struggling to learn new skills like shading, crosshatching, or making your pictures look more realistic, one of the best places to go to learn about coloring is YouTube. You can search the artistic skill you’d like to brush up on, then watch an artist show you precisely how to do it, on paper, in real time. This allows you to see how to do it, then practice on your own until you’re able to master the skill you’ve been wanting. It’s like having an art class in the privacy of your home, with your own private instructor. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Don’t Just Color Between the Lines

Consider adding shading, cross-hatching, blurring, water color techniques, and more to your pictures as you color. Take the time to really make the picture your own. Sure, an artist created it, but as you color it, you can really make it your own through the techniques that you use. You can even mix media on a single page, if you like, adding pastels to form a base, then coloring in with pencil or markers to darken in the design. That’s the great thing about art – the choice really is all up to you.

Sharpen Your Pencils far More than You Think You Should

As you color, you’re going to watch your pencils wear down, over and over again. If you want to be able to fill in the details of the intricate scenes featured in adult coloring books, you’re going to need a good quality pencil sharpener, and you’re going to need to use it far more than you’d like. We understand, you’re afraid of grinding your beautiful pencils down to nubs. However, pencils (even your favorites) are replaceable, and it’s a sacrifice well made in the name of art. So, sharpen them as much as you need to in order to make the piece stand out.

Adult coloring books are made to be a way to relax, unwind, and create art. You’re provided with a very basic form, and from there, you fill in the color, the shading, and the artistic imagery. You enhance the picture from black and white to color, making it something beautiful, one step at a time. In the process, you get to relax, breathe, and focus on doing something you love. Adult coloring books are therapeutic for this very reason. They allow you to focus on something creative, while stepping away from the outside world.

Overcoming Depression With Fairy Tales And Adult Coloring

Depression is a terrible problem, made all the more terrible by the fact that most people don’t really understand it. Certainly friends and loved ones will be supportive when the depression comes from a specific event. But the moment depression is a chronic problem, the moment depression is a mental illness that takes away your ability to trust in yourself, your ability to so much as get up and move in the morning, that support tends to wither.

Thankfully, whether it’s chronic depression that requires SSRIs and other medication or stress-caused depression that will start to clear up as you process and deal with whatever event triggered it, there are some things you can do to help feel better.

“Go Outside” And Other Dismissive Insults

This is around the time most articles on depression start talking about getting some exercise, going outside, and eating healthy. It’s true that those things can help you deal with depression, there’s no argument about that. However, they may as well be talking about throwing yourself at the ground and missing in order to fly for all the help it offers. If you could do those things, you wouldn’t be depressed in the first place!

For some people, depression is anything but a temporary problem. It’s a chronic problem, one that affects every single part of their life and will do so until they die. For some people, the best they will ever do is manage the symptoms of their depression. For those people, calling depression a “temporary problem” is straight up insulting, as it’s dismissive of the constant work one must perform in order to maintain even a semblance of normality.

Things That Really Do Count As Self-Help

Hopefully, you feel more comfortable that this article isn’t like the others. It can be difficult to accept advice from places that don’t even seem to understand the problem, after all. Not to mention, it’s always good to explain how damaging some of the common responses to depression can be since many people don’t realize it.

If you’re depressed, there are a number of things you can do to help yourself. Things that you might actually be able to do, rather than things you’d need to no longer be depressed to pull off. Things such as watching light-hearted movies and television, taking a shower, and feeding yourself. Getting outside and getting some exercise may take far too much energy, but if you can at least get out of bed and pull yourself into the shower, your body will begin creating chemicals that will boost your mood.

Another thing you can do is color. Adult coloring books have become all the rage these days and for good reason.

Overcome Depression With Adult Coloring

“Overcoming” depression may be a bit of a reach, but it can certainly help with the worst of the symptoms. Studies have shown that coloring can help reduce anxiety and increase focus.

How? And more importantly, how does this help with depression? There are several reasons coloring can help. First and foremost, it’s an incredibly simple physical act that none the less requires some amount of mental focus. This means it’s easy enough to do, allowing you to manage the act even when your depression is telling you that getting out of bed is the worst idea ever. It can even be done in bed, if that helps.

Secondly, as you color your brain will immediately begin to focus more on creating the picture and less on how terrible you and your life is. It’s not that you’re no longer depressed, of course. It’s that the human brain is designed to create and notice patterns. Coloring a picture is nothing more than creating a pattern of colors. This triggers parts of your brain that can allow you to forget about your depression, at least for a bit.

Adult coloring isn’t as good as actual therapy, and should absolutely not be used in place of psychiatric medication. But for those with chronic depression it can provide a small bit of relief, even if only for a time. And for those with stress-induced depression, it really could be a major factor in overcoming the internal upset that causes the depression-like symptoms!

Fairy Stories

Fairy stories can be a way of escaping from the current situation and finding yourself in a magical place, where your worries disappear for a while. Not all fairy stories are suitable of course, some are very dark and can make you perhaps feel worse. Some modern forms of fairy story are now called science fantasy or even just fantasy and there is plenty of fun and light-hearted magick to be found in the teenage sections of many libraries.