Season’s Greetings!

Here is my Christmas Mandala for 2020.

I’d like to wish all of you the very best that this season promises, not just for the few short days of this celebration, but for each and every day ahead of you.

May each of those days be filled with joy and wonder, good memories, contentment, peace, creative inspiration, and health.

May you have all that you need.

Template Thursday

If you popped along here for this week’s coloring template, I was a day early! Just click on the link to see it.

Template Thursday (on a Wednesday)!

The template

I’ve created this week’s template for the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group a day early this week.

This has been drawn with a Sakura Micron 05 pen on smooth, heavyweight cartridge paper (acid-free of course). I’ve added the background and colour digitally, keeping to a wintry, night-time kind of theme. Of course, this will work for any season at all, and any time of day.

As always, I look forward to seeing all the amazing, colourful interpretations of this template.

Taking a big of a break

I may not be as active on social media over the next few days. Christmas and New Year are difficult times of year for me emotionally and mentally and I know taking myself off into a largely Christmas-free bubble helps me drift through this time, as well as deal with anything that may creep in and cause some upset in me.

I know I’m not the only person who has difficulties with their emotional and mental health this year. Given all that has happened in the world this year, the huge number of people who have passed away during the pandemic and measures taken for people to keep themselves and their families free of Covid at this time, many more than usual will be struggling.

Being by myself at this time of year is not new to me, nor is withdrawing from the world at this time. I find it exhausting to keep up a mask of seasonal jollity when I feel anything but that. I find it easier to deal with whatever finds its way into my safe-bubble. It’s easier to deal with being alone if I do my best to carry on as normal.

I’m aware of what things I can do to self-care and self-soothe. Art. Music. Books, Films. TV. Naps. Nice food. Meditation.

Do you have a list? Have you learned to give yourself permission to take care of yourself, give yourself time and space to self-soothe?

Learning to give yourself permission to look after yourself, even if it means saying ‘no’ or setting limits, is one of the hardest things to do. And it takes a lot of practice. But it is one of the most important things we can learn to do.

I remind myself this is for just a few days a year, and that soon after the celebrations are done, life returns to ‘normal’, whatever that is in these pandemic times.

Winter Solstice 2020

All the best of the blessings of the season to you one and all!

Today, the Sun passes into Capricorn, marking the astronomical start of winter. It’s one of the shortest days of the year as well, and so it seems right that as the days get longer, the intensity of sunlight that reaches the Earth in the Northern Hemisphere strengthens, that it is seen as the ending of one orbit around the Sun, and the start of a new one.

Of course, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere, Happy Summer Solstice!

Template Thursday

It’s that day again – Template Thursday!

Each Thursday throughout the pandemic I’ve designed a colouring template for the members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

This week, the design has one big focal point motif of a zentangle-inspired Christmas Tree. It’s cute and whimsical, and is surrounded by holly, mistletoe, gifts, stars and baubles. Of course there’s some hearts there too.

Although the drawing is quite detailed, it’s split into smaller sections. This is great if you only have a bit of time or feel overwhelmed by the whole image. This way you can do one section at a time.

There’s a couple of reasons I usually only colour part of the template. One is a question of time when I have other things that have to be done. The other is that it shows the difference colour makes to the drawing, how it brings it to life.

I love to see how colourists bring my drawings to life with colour and how unique each person’s approach to colouring is. Every time I see one coloured it brings a smile to my face. I have so many colouring books published, so many templates drawn that I don’t have time to colour them all myself.

But when I see a template I wasn’t happy with all coloured in and how wonderful it looks, it not only makes me smile, but it gives me a little confidence boost that my drawings may be just good enough after all.

Yes, I suffer with imposter syndrome and a lack of self-confidence still.

For the rest of the day I really do need to get on with my Christmas card design for this year and get the moonpig ones sorted out and sent off.

Monday afternoon

Yesterday I had a godawful migraine-y headache. I managed to get some drawing done for Entangled Starry Skies. However the headache scuppered my plans to complete the templates.

I woke this morning, after a broken night’s sleep due to overheating and some hot ‘flashes’, my first night time ones. So, though I’m a bit tired, the headache has, thankfully, gone and I was able to focus on work. All the templates are complete, apart from any edits on the new ones and a couple of the very first ones drawn. So, the next job will be to colour in three of the templates that the editorial team will choose. I let them have that difficult job as I find it so hard to choose just three out of the thirty-one templates.

So, to celebrate I turned my attention to my Christmas ‘card’ for this year. I do need to get a design done sooner rather than later for the cards that need printing and posting. I suspect that Moonpig will be used this year for those.

The design above is the next iteration of the Christmas/winter tree idea I have. I’ve got as far as trying out some color palettes for the final design. Green would be traditional, but I rather like the opalescent colours at the top right of the test area.

After doing my social media posts, I’m going to go and sort a late lunch/early tea out for myself. It’s a tad late to organise myself to go out for a walk – with the skies growing darker with clouds dusk will fall early. Ho hum, perhaps tomorrow!

Template Thursday

It’s Thursday so that means it’s time for a new colouring template / colouring page for the members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group!

This week’s template is a combination of dangle designs and little pictures. Not one large and often intricate image to colour this week, but a series of little ones so that the template can be coloured in one little bit at a time. This is great for people who get overwhelmed by large, overly-complex colouring pages.

Just as a note, my book “A Dangle A Day” is available. It’s a tutorial book showing how you too can create your own cute and whimsical dangle designs. The dangle designs in the book are a lot smaller than this template!

This design was drawn on Rhodia Dot grid paper using a “F” Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pen and then cleaned up digitally. I then added a wintry background and added some colour to some of the motifs.

I always love to see the many different and unique ways colorists bring my designs to life. Colour really does make all the difference to the templates.

Template Thursday

It’s template Thursday! As it’s December, my templates will have wintry, themes, all with the emphasis on bringing light and colour into our lives during the last weeks of the year.

As I live in the Northern Hemisphere, we’re in the last few days of autumn. However, no matter where you live in the world, there are always starry night skies, and I suspect stars will feature a lot in the templates. Not just because I love stars, but because I’m working on Entangled Starry Skies.

This template is available to members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book fans facebook group.

Season’s Greetings Coloring Template

Season’s Greetings (c) Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

I’ve created a third December colouring template for the members of Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group, and here’s my partly coloured version.

If you’d like to download and print the template to colour, then all you need to do is pop over to the group and join! It’s free!

I’m flagging at the moment. I didn’t sleep much last night; I’ve picked up some kind of stomach bug and so was back and forth the bathroom. My tummy is still not well today. I was, however, determined to get a seasonal greeting out to one and all.

Drawn with Faber Castell Pitt Artist pens. Typography and colouring done digitally.

Winter Solstice 2019

Winter Solstice 2019 ©Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

I’ve been awake since way before dawn drawing this mandala to celebrate the Winter Solstice. I’m looking forward to the increased hours of daylight, though it will be a couple of weeks, or so, before there’s any noticeable difference in the length of day.

It’s been a lovely way to spend the hours as night gradually gives way to the sun. Not that I can see the Sun itself; grey skies and patches of rain obscure the golden wonder of that glowing ball of nuclear fusion.

I created the mandala using Autodesk Sketchbook Pro, Microsoft Surface Pen and Microsoft Surface Studio.

Festive Mandala

©Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

I needed to create a cute, whimsical, simple mandala this morning (and on into the afternoon). This is what I came up with. Plenty of bright colours glowing against the dark background.

Stars and hearts are motifs that often appear in my work, as well as arches that can be like petals, sunshine or architectural. The holly leaves and berries mark this mandala as a winter one.

Digital art worked using Autodesk Sketchbook Pro and Microsoft Surface Pen and Surface Studio.