Color, Create, Pattern & Play!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Hi Everyone,
I have exciting news to share—two of my new Zenspirations® Color, Create, Pattern & Play books –Birds & Butterflies and Expressions of Faith will be included on an end-cap at Michaels later this year! I’m looking for a few people who really enjoy coloring and patterning to help create the inspiration pieces for the new books—and was hoping that some of you would be interested. When I did the first three books in the series, I was able to include small color examples inside the back cover. I’m delighted that there will be full-color pages at the beginning of the new books, where I’ll be able to share different ways to pattern and color some of the designs. Some of the pages will feature one large image, but I’d like the first few pages to have four of the same image, each patterned and colored by a different artist. That’s where you come in!
I know many of you are expert colorers, but I’m not sure how many of you actually pattern your designs before applying color. I’m looking for people who can do both, so I thought I’d share a bit about patterning this week. Since last week’s blog post included a free downloadable Zenspirations Mother’s Day card, I thought I’d use that as an example in hopes that you’ll try some of these techniques, and then post a photo of your finished creation (with your name on it!) BEFORE Mother’s Day, to either Instagram or Facebook (don’t forget #zenspirations). I’ll pick one or more projects to feature in next week’s blog, and I’m eager to see what everyone creates.
Here’s a picture of the card:

To make it easy for you to see where I added patterns, I’ve color coded them in the order in which I did them. I want to encourage you to add your own personal touches to make the design unique. Some of my touches were adding the dangle heart at the top and the designs inside the flowers, which are shown below in red.

Next I added detail which you can see in the blue patterns below:

Then I went back and added weight to some of the patterning I’d already done, and then added some additional enhancements. These are shown in gold below:

Below is what the design looks like with all the patterns I added shown in black so you can see how much interest and texture they add to the design:

In addition to adding patterns, there are lots of other ways to enhance a design. Let’s look at a page from my Zenspirations: Inspirations– Designs to Feed Your Spirit book as an example.

In the examples below, I embellished the design on the left by personalizing it (notice the name above the top branch), as well as by adding patterns in the hills, leaves and beads. I enhanced the design in the center by slimming the tree so I could add patterns on the left of the tree trunk, and by adding a lot of patterning to the bird house. I also added additional leaves with dots inside and heavy borders, and then double stroked some of the letters so I’d have room to add color. The design on the right is closest to the original image– but it looks quite different thanks to the arch pattern I drew inside the border. If I wanted to add texture and interest to this design, I could keep adding patterns the way I did in the Mother’s Day card above.

I hope this gives you some ideas on how to embellish the designs and really make them your own. If this appeals to you, and you are interested in submitting your work for one of the new Color, Create, Pattern & Play books, I’ll send you a couple of the designs, and ask you to add patterns, color it in your favorite dry media— (i.e. colored pencils, markers, gel pens, crayons) and send me a photograph of your finished piece and the tools you used to create it. I will select some of my favorite styles, and those artists will each be asked to create one or more inspiration pieces for the books. If you know someone who might be interested, please share this information with them– especially if you know an art student who hasn’t had the chance to have their work published before. I love opening doors for people, and it would be meaningful to me to be able to include new talent in one of my books.
The aritsts whose work is selected will recieve a credit line and a sample copy of the book. And, of course they’ll have a sneak peak at some of the illustrations! FYI, while I get a vote, my publisher will be making the final decision as to who’s work to include, so know that this is an invitation, not a guarantee of acceptance
If you are interested in participating, I’d like to know what medium you plan to work in, and I’ll need your e-mail address so I can send you the sample designs. Please do NOT e-mail me or FB message me about this!!! It might be a few weeks before I’m ready to send the designs out, so I’d like to make sure that I have all the e-dresses in one place– which means here, in the comment section of this blog post.  If YOU ARE A BLOG SUBSCRIBER (which means I have your e-mail address), you can leave your FULL NAME (otherwise I won’t be able to look up your e-dress) in your comment– or just leave me your e-mail address, which is even easier. (You can tell that you are a subscriber if you get an e-mail with a link to the latest blog post every Tuesday morning at 10:00 am Eastern time.) If you aren’t a subscriber, you can either sign up for the blog or leave me your name and e-dress and I’ll add you to the list.
Whether or not you want to submit designs for the new books, I do hope you’ll download the Mother’s Day card, add patterns & color, and give it to someone special. In the spirit of making a difference in the world, I’d like to ask you to join me in reaching out someone whose mother died since last Mother’s Day. Holidays are REALLY hard when you lose someone you love, especially the first year. So if you know someone who can’t be with their mom… please take a moment this week to let them know that you are thinking about them. A phone call, text, e-mail or card can make a big difference.

Stay Zenspired,


47 thoughts on “Color, Create, Pattern & Play!”

  1. Darlene Tanti. Markers. What a wonderful opportunity you are giving someone!

  2. Joy Spear. Thank you for allowing us to play with you. 🙂 Colored Pencils and / or Markers.

  3. I'd love to participate! Also, want you to know I like the way you wrote the information out with examples of ways to enhance the pages. I like to use a mix of colored pencils, mostly Prismacolor Premeirs and glitter gel pens!

    It is so hard when your mom first dies, as you said. My mom died over 25 years ago when my son was 5 years old. My heart still ACHES for her! I plan to make sure the card I color goes to someone's mom who will really appreciate it! God bless you!

  4. I would love to help! i have all of your books and follow every blog post! I just love your work and would be honored to help or contribute!

  5. Thanks for this wonderful opportunity to play and color with you! I like to use ink and gel pens.

  6. The way you set out the steps (with color even!) is very helpful for those of us with less artistic imagination, you excel at opening doors.

    Thank you Joanne.

  7. Good Morning! I love your designs and have been following your blog for the past couple of months. I would be thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in this! I normally work with markers, both black and colored. But have also been known to dabble with other mediums as well. I have a pen stash to rival a stationery store ;).

  8. Hello from the Philippines! Thank you very much for the opportunity to embellish and color some of your work. I've been inspired by your work for about 3 years now (I discovered your work when I was on my maternity leave for my youngest). I would love to print your work on watercolor paper and use markers to embellish and and watercolors to color

  9. Suzanne O'Mullan – mixed media… I would love to work on more of your lovely designs. I normally do not show anyone my completed work…

    (as a side note – did you ever receive the thank you or did I mistakenly send it to "Joanne Sharpe"? – I sent this awhile ago – but now that I think about it – I think she might have done a blog post on your blog once – and I might have taken "your class" thinking it was you – but I signed up for her class? I was not aware of last names awhile ago….)

  10. My sister & niece passed away this year so I will do that for there kids. Thank you so much for sharing vi do have that book & love, love it.

    Hugs & Blessings
    Ida Mae

  11. I'd love to add patterns to your lovely "Mothers" coloring page. What a wonderful opportunity it would be. Thank you so much for sharing it and for always being so inspirational to others!

  12. Many thanks for the opportunity!! I'd love to have a go using Jelly Roll and pencils.

  13. Hello Joanne! Thank you so much for this incredible opportunity to be part of something wonderful and express ourselves through our art! I have been doodling since I was a kid and it has always been therapeutic for me. I would love to participate!!! My email is [email protected]. I have taken a huge interest in trying gelly pens from watching your youtube videos and am hoping to get some soon. I will most likely use color pencils with some marker or gelly pens. Thanks again!! 🙂

  14. Yes I would be interested to participate!

    Gail Beck [email protected]

    Not sure what medium I would use yet. I have to see the piece first. Mostly, I usually use markers and gel pens, and sometimes colored pencils.

    Thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to participate whether we get picked or not!

  15. Hello Joanne –

    I would love the privilege of submitting my artwork. I would most likely use colored pencil and I most definitely would add touches of Sakura gel pens – for sparkle. I lost my mom 15 years ago and when cleaning out her belongings we found all the handmade Mother's Day cards given to her by myself and my siblings. She treasured them. I plan to color a Mother's Day card for a colleague who will be having her first Mother's Day without her mom. That was a splendid idea, thanks. You have a lovely and blessed day.

  16. Looking forward to working on this project. My media choice will be inspired by the design, pen and ink, jelly roll pens, markers, colored pencils or perhaps water color. I love your blog!

  17. I've already started colouring two of your Mother's Day cards, but didn't even think to add extra patterns. I thought the design was perfect as it is. I'm using prismacolour pencils, and Am doing one in brights, and one in pastels. I would love to participate in this wonderful idea.
    I think I am already a subscriber, but please add my email address just in case.

    [email protected]

  18. I'm in! Can't wait to get out watercolor markers, gel pens, and inktense colored pencils to add color (but I always use Sakura micron pigma pens to add patterns first. Maybe I'll play with lots of colors of microns and see what happens.

    Thanks for the opportunity, Joanne. [email protected]

  19. I would love the chance to pattern in one of your designs! I use a variety of markers and pens; Sharpies, Micron pens, Spectrum Noir and gel pens. Linda

  20. I would love to participate. You are a wonderful inspiration. I use mostly markers or colored pencils.
    Juliane Lopes

  21. who could refuse such an offer? I'm going to †ake these when visiting my sister. Though we are up there on that hill (not over!) sisters always love to color together. Thank you for this fun opportunity which may even help you out to boot!
    and Ginny (Sis)

  22. Oh….I would lI've to participate. I love to doodle using spray mists as my medium. You can contact me at [email protected].

    Thank you for a great collaboration.

    Warmest regards,
    Tina Walker

  23. I would love a chance like this, would use my Sakura and gel pens, maybe watercolours and inks too.

  24. Hi Joanne,

    I'm not a colorer, but certainly did enjoy this post about your process for adding patterns. A mini-tutorial and wonderfully visual in its step-by-step way. i do love to tweak the tiny details 😉 Will look for your new books at Michaels and make purchase suggestions to my public library.

  25. Hi Joanne, what a great idea, to give your followers this fabulous opportunity to share their skills with your beautiful work, you just amaze me, l along with the other ladies would love to have a go, my medium would be mircon pigma with dry inktense pencils or prismacolour pencils, thanks for letting us have a go, ……..Kate Adderley, oxoxox

  26. You have a terrific idea…I would like to participate…colored pencils and micron pens

  27. I would love to participate! Thank you for the opportunity! I would use prismacolor pencils and/or markers.

  28. Hi Everyone,

    I'm delighted that so many of you are interested in creating coloring inspiration examples for the new books, but wanted to remind you that I either need your e-mail address or (if you are a blog subscriber) your COMPLETE name so I can look up your e-mail address. Otherwise I have no way of getting the sample pages to you! Please take a moment to review your comment and make sure that I'll be able to find you.

    Thanks, and Stay Zenspired,

  29. Thanks for the opportunity Joanne. How exciting! Not sure what mediums I would use. It depends on what the design is.

  30. I just adore your designs. I would love to participate in your design challenge. I use colored pencil and marker. My daughter is an art student and I am sharing this blog with her. Thank you for making opportunities.

  31. HI Joanne – It would be an honor to work with you! My email [email protected] I am flexible, can work with PITT pens, PITT pastels, Gelli or a combination. I also like a white sharpie! Hopefully you will like what I do! 😉

  32. I absolutely love to pattern your designs. Please send me the email. I use gelly roll pens, Pitt pens, and Copic markers. I can't wait!! Thank you so much for the card and this opportunity!!

  33. Hi Joanne;
    I'd love to participate. I'd like to use my Derwent Inktense or Koi Brush pens. I'll go with your choice. I'll be sending the card to a friend's mother who is very near the end of her life and struggles with Alzheimer's and is now in hospital. She is a dear woman and has had a difficult life, lost her sons and husband early on. Anyway that's me. I have been a subscriber for a long time, but here is my e_addy: susanna[dot]suchak[AT]gmail[dot]com. I love your work and am trying to practice to be able to create something as lovely as you … and as artfully easily. smiling.

  34. Hi Joanne,
    I've just recently started patterning but I would love a chance to pattern one of your designs. I like using gel pens and watercolour pencils.
    Thank you for being such an inspiration.
    Kathryn X

    [email protected]

  35. I hope I'm not too late to participate! I just posted my design on #zenspirations. I love designing and coloring your beautiful designs! (My mom loved it too!) -Kristen

  36. Hi Joanne!

    I would love to participate! I hope I am posting in the right place for you to find my comment. I like to pattern with sharpies and color with colored pencils. I love to do both, so this would be an exciting challenge for me. Lately, I have been making my own coloring pages that are zen-inspired. Drawing is a great stress reliever for me. Thank you for this opportunity!

    [email protected]

  37. I have just found your amazing blog whilst searching for some lettering ideas to add to my journalling. I have been playing with mixed media work for the last year or so. Wow your creativity is incredible. I would love to join in with this project if I am not too late? I am planning a holiday journal as my next project and would love to add some hand lettering and patterns to it rather than relying on stamps. Thanks so much for sharing your work

  38. PS I meant to say I use so many different mediums in my journalling and artwork….inks, pastels, pencils, alcohol pens, Inktense pencils…I think to start I would try Inktense but I am happy to try anything! Your will see that I am a girl who loves new challenges in my creative journey! Thanks for the chance…I am also happy to try your suggestions!

  39. Hello Joanne, I'd love to color your sample page. I would use the gelly roll pens! Thank you for the opportunity!

  40. I would love the opportunity to be a part of this project Joanne. I love doing any type of art that makes people smile and feel inspired and loved. I would use Sakura micron pens for the embellishments and Copic or prismacolor markers for the color. My email is [email protected]

    Thank you! Have a day filled with joy!

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