I purchased some Neocolors years ago. I tried them out once and thought they looked like crayons and wondered what people used them for. They sat in a little baggie on my shelf collecting dust for the next couple years. Then last month Studio Calico picked up Neocolors and everyone was raving about them. So I ran to my office and grabbed that little bag and fell madly in love myself. Who knew that love was within my reach all along?
Not only did I fall in love with the 10 I had already purchased, I bought every color that SC carried and then another 20 or so from an art store. I now have about 40 colors. And I do not regret this purchase AT ALL. The more I use these "adult crayons", the more I love them! But before we get into the details of WHY I love them so much, let me show you my four project life spreads using the Studio Calico May kits called Camelot.
This is my week 11. It started with the two page protectors I always use and just rotate - Becky Higgins Style A and Style D. I tend to only use these two sizes because they fit all the gorgeous 3x4 and 4x6 cards that are in the SC Project Life kits. But as usual, I had too many pictures for one spread, so I added a Becky Higgins Style J insert. This shows the two sides with the insert in the spread. These were both made using ONLY the Camelot PL kit and some of the digital files for the month.
Next I worked on week 15. This was the week I took engagement photos of my son and his fiancee, so again I had way too many photos for my usual spread. I used a Becky Higgins insert Style G and I used one side of the spread for my son's birthday and the engagement photos and the other side of the spread for our spring break photos.
Again, you can see close up images and supplies used in my gallery HERE. If you look at my last post from yesterday, I show you all the ways I used my new digital brushes on my spreads. Now I want to show you all the ways I used my beloved Neocolor Collection on my spreads.
First, let's start with a little quick lesson on how to use Neocolors directly on photos. Now this is the EASY way with very little technique to it. But if you want to learn about the professional way - the way where you use a copy of a photo and actually create a beautiful piece of artwork, take the Mixed Media class at SC and watch Celine's video on this. It is amazing and the class is still for sale. Now back to the easy way that just adds some color to your photo. I started with a basic photo of my daughter paddleboarding with lots of white space around her. The background of this photo is bland and washed out. So this is a perfect photo to brighten up with Neocolors.
The first thing I did is start to color the image with different blue and green Neocolor II crayons. I mixed the colors and just did a light coat not covering the entire background, mostly just the outside edges.
There are two methods you can use to blend the color into the background. First, you can use your finger and just smudge it which i have done in this image. You can also use a napkin if you prefer, but the oil in your finger seems to do a better job if you don't mind getting messy!
Next, I started coloring more of the background. You can see I left a lot of strokes showing as I planned on using water to blend these which removes most of the stroke marks. But I kept all of the coloring running horizontally so it looks cohesive and like water.
Next, I added water using a Studio Calico Medium Water Brush with very little water on the tip. Drip some onto a rag and then wipe the tip off on the rag so it is just lightly damp.
I kept layering more color until I got the tone I wanted and I used the brush to blend it up to the girls. Last, I added some gold for the shadow and a little pink and gold throughout the water to add depth. I ran over it one more time with a damp brush and it was done!
Now the image looks more like a painting and it is much more colorful than the original photo! This is a great technique to use for a photo that has a bland background or has distracting items that you want to remove from the background.
I used this same technique with less color on one of the photos in my spreads above.
I left the color more rough so it looked like a painting. I didn't color the dogs at all. I added a stamp on the top from the PL add-on called Lancelot.
I also used this technique on a photo of me as seen here:
This picture was a little fuzzy, so it hid that issue! (((I also got to add some more hair so it looks thicker - cheater!))) With this image, I just used my finger, not water, so the crayons are more obvious and it looks more like a painted image. With water, it would look more blended.
I also used my Neocolors to color shade the background of this hello card and to color in the boxes with white rub on letters in them. I used a water brush to blend them like watercolor paint.
The last example I want to show you is how I used the Neocolors in a fairly opaque way to color in this ADORABLE little girl card in the Ashley G. add-on card set found HERE. I loved it the minute I saw it, but I'm like a little kit with a coloring book when I see something left plain. I have to color it. And my adult crayons were the perfect tool to do so! I used an almost dry brush to go over the color and blend it and erase any lines, but I didn't want it took look like it was watercolored.
If you are not a subscriber to Studio Calico (((I ask why the heck not!?!?!?))), you can purcahse all of the May kits at Reveal tonight at 9:00 pm pst. Please join us for a reveal chat at 8:00 pm pst. And if you want to become a subscriber for next month, you will get to shop 12 hours earlier and you will be more likely to be able to purchase all of the items you want! Thanks for visiting and I hope this little tutorial was helpful for you! xoxo