5 Tips to Turn Your Coloring Book into a Work of Art

Coloring Book Creativity

How to Enhance Your Coloring Book Pages | Doreen Kassel | National Coloring Book Day | ArtistsNetwork

Owls of a Feather, enhanced coloring book page, by Doreen Kassel. Learn how to make your own in Kassel’s adult coloring book, Lush Life Creative Coloring!

 

No longer an activity just for kids, coloring books can be relaxing, meditative and a great way to get in touch with your creative side. They are especially great resources for those of us who don’t yet have advanced artistic skills or a lot of free time on our hands.

And, because coloring books are pretty much one of the coolest inventions on the planet—at least in my opinion—there is even a national holiday dedicated to them: National Coloring Book Day on August 2.


From urban city scenes to art straight from the Old Masters, you don’t want to miss out on these FREE coloring book downloads!


Ready to celebrate? Artist Doreen Kassel has a few ways she likes to mix things up and experiment with something other than flat color. And now you can, too. Below are five tips from Kassel to improve and enhance your coloring pages with some simple yet gorgeous effects. Enjoy!

Create a Mottled Background

Before you begin coloring, spray acrylic ink onto the page in various colors until you achieve the palette you want. Stand back to get a finer mist, and closer to get a thicker cover.

Be sure to cover your workspace to protect it from the spray. Give the page time to thoroughly dry before you move on to coloring.

 

mottled background

Spray acrylic ink directly onto the page to create a mottled background.

Add Texture and Patterns with PanPastels

Create various textures and patterns by using a PanPastel tool to apply dashes of PanPastel across the page. White space can be left exposed or the whole page can be enveloped in color—it’s up to you.

 

PanPastel patterns

Apply PanPastels across the page to create patterns and texture.

Add Details with Liquid Frisket

Create spiral designs, or any fun design you wish using Liquid Frisket and a Frisket Nib Tool. Be careful not to make it too intricate though, because the Frisket can be hard to control when painting finer lines.

 

Liquid Frisket details

Add fine details with Liquid Frisket.

Embellish with Highlights

Create select highlights on your coloring pages with white opaque paint and a fine-tipped brush.

 

White highlights

Apply highlights with white paint and a fine-tipped brush.

Splatter It

Splatter liquid eraser or white acrylic paint across your coloring page using a palette knife and toothbrush. If you choose to use paint, it should be a loose consistency. It’s a good idea to experiment a bit with the splatter technique first to avoid any unwanted blobs.

 

Splatter technique

Create a splatter effect with white paint and a toothbrush.

 

Whether you decide to solely focus on trying to color within the lines, or try out some of Kassel’s creative tips, we hope you join us in celebrating this colorful holiday. Happy National Coloring Book Day, artists!


About Doreen Kassel

Doreen Kassel’s career as an artist has spanned many creative incarnations, from designing and illustrating children’s books and puzzles for National Geographic, UNICEF and Scholastic, to textile designer to whimsical sculptor and workshop instructor. Her artwork and articles have appeared in various art publications, and her workshops that have brought her to many locations across the U.S. and Europe. Check out her adult coloring book, Lush Life Creative Coloring, in the North Light Shop. And, learn more about Kassel by visiting her website at doreenkassel.com.

*Article contributions made by Christina Richards 


Celebrate National Coloring Book Day with these FREE coloring book downloads! 

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