Colouring Book Tutorial. Colour Pastel Background Made Easy.
Hello. This is Peta Hewitt, La-Artistino back again with another video. Today I’d like to give you a tutorial on another method of colouring backgrounds, one that I’m seeing more and more often, and that is – using pastels to shade the background in, instead of trying to colour manually by hand with pencils. I’ve used this technique a couple of times and I’m quite excited about it! It’s fast and it’s fun and gives a very satisfying result. Here, I’ve used it on this simple fish drawing in ‘Completely Relaxing Colouring Book Series 6 – Peaceful Ocean’ This was my experiment, to see how it would go. And here I’ve used it in – ooh, I’ve taken the cover off but it’s actually in ‘Enchanted Forest’. And here you can see a beautiful background, very quickly done, the background in all took me I think less than 15 minutes … and it works very well once you’ve sealed it. You can use different pencils and gel pens. Now I’ll show you the equipment I’ll be using…. First of all, my pastels. I’ve got an old set of Windsor & Newton Soft Pastels, now note they are ‘soft pastels’ and not ‘oil pastels’ Oil pastels have an oily feel to them, and soft pastels are more chalky. This is a set I bought about 30 years ago, I believe they’re a little more expensive now, I paid $30.60 Australian dollars. This is what they look like in the box, and this is what I’ll be using. You don’t have to use this brand, there are lots of brands both expensive and cheap. You can try any of them, I have only experienced using these ones. And I’m quite happy with it, but I’m sure you’ll get good results with any. As with any technique, please test it beforehand before putting it in your book. Also, what you will need is a cutter – a little box cutter, I use one of these. Some pads to smooth the pastel out. These little makeup pads I think are absolutely perfect… You can buy a set of these, I’ve seen them individually, you can buy them in chemists. And they look like that (that one is a bit used), they are usually pristine white; you can chuck them away with each colour you use. There are other methods of smoothing the pastel out, some people like to use cotton balls I find I can’t get a smooth result with these. For little areas you could try one of these little double-ended cotton buds. These are kind of special, this particular brand has a pointy tip on one end and a flat tip on the other which is really good. These are great for little tiny areas that you want to get into. For this video today, we’re just going to use a flat pad. Now the other thing you may use is an eraser, I’ll tell you why you need these in a little while. Just a soft white eraser is best, I find the coloured ones and the hard ones tend to damage the paper. Another eraser that is very useful is one of these clicker ones. They come in lots of different brands, I particularly like using this one which is made by Pacer, Because the ends are held very firmly in place and don’t tend to push back in when you use them. And one of my favourite new tools, thanks to a friend of mine, is a little electric eraser. Made by Derwent, and I will talk about these in depth in a later video. These are great for tiny little corners and areas if you just want to take a little bit off. They are quite good erasers too, and the tips are replaceable. Next, you will need some fixative. With pastels, they have a nasty habit of smudging and getting on your fingers and getting everywhere so if you want to protect your work when it’s finished, you will need to spray with with fixative. The one I use is a ‘workable’ fixative, this is a matte. This is made by Micador. If you ask at your craft store, they’ll have workable fixative. The other things that I would recommend…. because pastels are so messy, and because I tend to be an absolute klutz and I get stuff EVERYWHERE when I am using messy materials… I have a wet hand-cloth, very carefully wrung out so I don’t drip it everywhere. Just to clean my fingers on so I don’t get paw prints on everything. And a hand towel just to wipe my hands. So I don’t get wet marks everywhere. And I think that’s about it! Okay, we will start! Okay, here we go. This is the picture I’ve chosen in Johanna Basford’s ‘Lost Ocean’ to do today, I’ve chosen this particular picture because we’ve got a lot of white space It is a good one to do your pastels in. For starters, you’ll notice the facing page I’ve covered with cling wrap, and that’s to try and stop the pastel dust from contaminating that picture. All I’ve done is folded it over and tucked it in to try to hold it in place. I haven’t tried this before but we’ll see how we go. In my experience, you don’t get much pastel dust on the other side and you can rub it out before you spray fixative. So, to begin we’ll choose our colours. So for scenes in the ocean, we’ll go for some nice ‘greeny’ colours. And I particularly like this one out of the Windsor & Newton range. Now you grab your pen knife, just expose a little bit of the blade and you should always take care when you have sharp objects in your hand Press the book down That’s the problem with the binding of these books, you’ve really got to push them around Now take your pen knife and just scrape. All I’m doing is I’m scraping pastel dust very gently, you don’t need much pressure onto the page around the fish. I’ll do a close-up so you can see how it’s done. Once again, take your knife take your pastel and just scrape. You don’t need much pressure at all. Now I would recommend that you just put a little bit on to begin with, You can always add more if you want it. Once you’ve put some on, take your pad so take your makeup-remover pad fold it into a little edge like that flatten it out a little bit so you’ve got a nice surface. Place it on, and to start you just dab it. And then rub it in with little circle movements. Now, there is a step I’ll recommend…. because I just remembered it and it’s something I recommend you do, and that is to grab a piece of paper (printer paper is perfect) if you don’t have printer paper, then shiny glossy magazine covers will do. Now just pop it in-between the pages that you’re working in. Just to try and protect the page below. Something I should’ve done to start off with, but it’s never too late to do it. I want this a little bit darker so I’m going to scrape on a little bit more chalk. And just rub it in. Just little circle motions, try not to pick up and drag it around too much or you’ll get streaky marks. But if you do get streaky marks, just rub and the streaky marks will go. While the pastels haven’t been fixed, they are quite moveable and you can rub a bit of it off if you don’t like it. And on that note, don’t be afraid to cross over the lines onto the actual drawing itself if you want a nice even surface going right up to the edge of the actual artwork. And I’ll show you why in a sec. So just do this for the entire picture, I’m going to pan the camera back so that you can see me cover the entire picture. As you can see, I’m not happy with the depth of colour here, so I’m just adding more. Just little circle motions. I find just lifting and placing, and lifting and placing and I do that particular rhythm to avoid making blotchy areas or streaks. You can practice this yourself on a piece of paper. And you’ll get the hang of how to get a nice smooth background. Alright, I think that looks fairly smooth now. Now, if you want to add another colour over the top that’s easy! Just select another piece but you wouldn’t want to select something like red, because the red will mix with the green and it will give you a bit of a yucky shade, a bit of a brownish shade. So I would stick with colours that would appear on either side of the colour wheel. Probably a dark green would be good, or a blue. I’m going to go with a darker green and I’m just going to pop a little bit in the corners. just to frame the fish. so just use the same technique. I find this dark green quite intense, so I’m only going to dust on a little bit. And that will help focus your attention on the fish in the centre. There are all sorts of possibilities for this particular picture. If you’re a bit artistically inclined, you could draw some nice seaweed in the background. I might do that for the facing page, there is a similar picture on the facing page. Now again, pick up one of these. I would recommend a different one for every colour. Just to stop the colours from mixing. And now just dab it a little bit, to pick up the colour and just start rubbing it in. I just want a subtle look. I don’t want it too dark. Probably the hardest bit I think is the spine, just because it bends. You can try to get it perfect if you like, I’m quite happy with the way it is turning out. And it’s just tinting the corners of the page. What you’ll notice about this technique is just how fast and easy it is to achieve a really smooth, nice background. Which is more interesting than just the plain white background. But if you want, you could just have this fish on the plain white background. It’s up to you. It’s coming along nicely, I’m rather happy with that. Just a little bit of a tint in the corners. If you want to remove any of the pastel at this stage, you can lighten it by using a clean one of these or just the back of the one you’re using and getting rid of some excess if you’ve put too much on. Or, as I’ll show you in a minute, if you want to clean up your centre figure which in this case is the fish now we need to move onto the erasers. Now I’m just going to blow to get the excess powder off to see what I’ve got and I have a look at it I can see there is a bit of a wet mark on that spot there, I must have got a bit of moisture on it but we’re not going to worry too much about it, it’s fairly minor. Now if I really wanted to, I could wait for it to dry and then rub it off and re-apply. But I’m not going to be too fussed. Now, as I was saying – erasers. So here’s the next step. This is where these guys come in. Now before using the fixative, you can go through and just take away excess colour If you accidentally go over the lines, and go into the background colour which you want to retain that’s an easy fix! Just pick up your pad again, and rub the colour back on. Now I’m just going to go around and do some here. And that’s alright up to a point, but if you want to get into the finer details, and these pictures do have a lot of fine details, try one of these ones. And just rub it around the edges. Now I’m not going to be fussed to take it all the way back to clean, or all the way back to the edges because when you colour over the top, unless you want to leave areas white, it’s so feint it’s not going to show through. I’ll grab a clean tissue. and just flick the rubber shavings off. And if you’re lucky enough to have one of these bad boys, just press the button, hold it down and just put it where you want the pastel removed. very gently, very carefully. Now a word of warning: these guys do jump around a bit, you can feel it, it’s pulling you off to one side. So go very gently and slowly with a firm hand and you should be right. And just continue until you’ve finished the entire fish. Okay now the next step is to use the fixative. And here, as I said is the one I use, made by Micador, an Australian brand. It is ‘workable matte fixative’. The matte will give it a ‘tooth’ which means you can go over the top with pencil or whatever and the pencil will hold in the tooth. Don’t grab a glossy fixative because it will be harder to colour over. There are other brands that make it just check at your local hobby store. Important: don’t do it inside I don’t know what the effects of the fumes are on your lungs, but I don’t want to find out either! So let’s take it outside and give it a good spray. So that’ll be off-camera. But just to show you what I’m doing, I’m holding the spray about 10 inches or or perhaps 25 centimetres above my subject, and quickly just swish, swish, swish. Making four passes quickly, and another four swish, swish, swish, swish and that will be plenty. You don’t want to saturate the picture. And you don’t want to use this stuff where you’ve already coloured-in with gel pens or with markers because that’ll make them bleed through. So only on the pastel or the pencil, this guy. And that concludes my tutorial on how to do backgrounds with pastels. If you’d like to see me complete this Fishy Fellow, please click through to my next video.