Shade and Hue and Trendy Too!

It’s not that I was going along with the trend. I hate going along with trends. I don’t jump on the bandwagon; I stand on the side of the road the lob water balloons at it as it lumbers past.

So I held out for a long time. I was pretty sure I wouldn’t like it anyway.

But after I bought and put together six puzzles in a month, I was at a loss for something absorbing and creative to fill my evenings — a chunk of time that I used to fill with novel-writing. I considered. I tested out a page. And I caved.

I bought a coloring book.

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In my defense — because, yes, I feel defensive that I’m like hundreds of other women who are all into coloring — I don’t like the books that are merely a pattern repeated over and over across a page. This book gives me trailing vines, little vignettes, and tiny discoveries like a caterpillar inching along a flower. It’s the discoveries I like best.

I skipped to somewhere in the middle and filled a page or two. I liked it. But there sure are a lot of tiny individual leaves, all needing personal attention. Lots of similar settings and ideas. It was getting monotonous.

Without really realizing it, I started to set myself limits. I do this with writing also: giving myself a maximum word count, or one point of view, or having to incorporate certain words. I’m always interested to see what results.

So… what if I colored a picture using only shades of blue?

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(I allowed yellow for the discoveries.)

What if I tried a picture with black? Leaves and vines aren’t black. I allowed myself two accent colors, and then set out to see what happened.

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I tend to like these spare ones better than my pictures where I colored every item, using any and all colors available:

Another limit I set for myself is to use colors I don’t actually like. I started this one tonight, using orange (my least favorite color), and coloring only where one flower or leaf touched another one. So far I’m really pleased with the outcome:

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My next color for this page will be green because I hate green and orange together.

So far, though, my favorite result is the one where I allowed myself to use only neutral colors with a couple of subdued accent colors. I think I’m actually going to pull this one out and frame it.

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Are you a colorer? It’s all the rage, you know. Everybody is doing it. Even people who don’t like to admit it.

How do you go about filling up your pages? Post a picture and chat with me. After all, I’ve got a lot of little leaves here to fill in so I’ve got the time to listen.

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