So technically it’s not really a colouring craze, it’s just that more people are getting into it again and it’s being promoted a lot more than in the past. The ‘craze’ part has kind of died down since it started a couple of years ago. I have been colouring for a while though only bits and pieces. I have amassed a large collection of books but with only a few finished pieces. I’ve also been following a number of colourists online through instagram and You Tube who inspire and provide some good advice.
One of the first questions I asked early on was “What coloured pencils do I use?”. There are so many different brands and types out there that it can be a bit daunting to choose. The top two brand named pencils I am aware of are Prismacolor and Faber Castell Polychromos. These are not your standard colouring pencils, they’re designed for artists. Johanna Basford, who inspired everyone to take up their pencils again with her numerous colouring books, tends to lean towards Staedtler (who now are working with her and her books). For Staedtler you have the Noris Club pencils which are pretty much your student, cheap pencils. They are okay but not really a good choice for these types of books. The Ergo Soft group of pencils by Staedtler are a much better choice and are Johanna’s choice of colouring pencils. They have a great pigment, bright colours and really good for any of her or other colouring books. I have a set and really do like using them, however they are limited in colours (24), and you can sort of blend them together and it works okay but not as well as the higher priced pencils.
Speaking of higher priced pencils, I ended up purchasing both the Polychromos and the Prismacolor Premier pencils. I started out by buying a small pack of Polychromos, and just adding onto them until I got the full set of 120 pencils. These are lead pencils so they are hard but have beautiful pigments and are brilliant to use. More recently I picked up the full set of Prismacolor Premier Pencils (150). I was drawn to these pencils by the sheer number of colours and the great blending ability they have. These pencils are oil based so they are soft pencils. There was only one thing that kept me from purchasing Prismacolors and that was that you can sometimes get a set that are broken as their soft leads can break quite easily. But thankfully I don’t seem to have that problem.
The picture above is a work in progress. I have a lot of those at the moment… but this one I am probably going to finish. I’m using the Prismas on this page and really like using them. It’s from a Japanese colouring book called Romantic Country – The Second Tale – by Eriy. I picked up both the first and second books as well as a colouring book called Menuet de bonheur by Egusa Kanoko. Of course I have all of Johanna Basford’s colouring books including two Artist Versions (these are larger books based on her main colouring books that are one sided and on thicker board), as well as a number of other colouring books I’ve picked up or been given as gifts.
As I mentioned earlier, I have been doing this colouring since it became a craze a few years ago but didn’t really post anything about it here until today. I am hoping to provide a few more updates on my current work in progress as this might also encourage me to actually finish a few colouring pages!