Monday, January 16, 2017

Asian Inspired for Aurora Wings

Our first challenge of the new year begins today at Aurora Wings and since the Chinese New Year is coming up on January 28th, we are celebrating with the theme of 'Asian Inspired'. 

There are so many gorgeous Asian images in the Aurora Wings Shop, both Japanese and Chinese, that I'm not totally surprised that my teamies each chose a different image.  I've chosen Metonoia, scanned from the Midnight Gardens coloring book and printed out as a 5x7" image.

I've always adored Mitzi's print of Metonoia. I was obviously inspired by Mitzi's own coloring of the image. in fact I gotta say, without her print to help me out I would not have even known where to start.  I was also intrigued by her own inspiration and the psychology behind it the image.  You can read about it HERE in the description.

So I was pretty lost when I first looked at the image.  Eiyiyi!  Where to start? Her skin, of course, and then to be honest, I was too intimidated to continue for a whole week.  Then I decided I would at least sort of map out what was what, 'cause with all the hair and the various parts of her kimono and all, I was kind of confused.  She's colored with Copics and I used the lightest N2 to pick out all the pieces of hair.  Then I took the image section by section.

I hate to say I don't really keep track of my colors and about half of them are still all over my desk. I can tell ya the reds range from R20 to R29, though. Here I'm starting to try  to get some patterns going in her kimono.  In many cases I began with E50 and then layered colors over that.  I'm darkening the strands of her hair here, as well, all N's and about every other one up to N8, I think.

Still layering colors.  In my purple areas I also laid down some of my lighter reds in the top right and much darker ones at the bottom left.  I used BV02, BV20, and BV23 for shading and V05,06,15,22 and 25 over and over until I got what I wanted.  Colorless blender was definitely my friend.  I also decided that the hair needed more definition so I actually outlined the strands with a black Copic multiliner (.3) and filled in some with that too.  At this stage of the game I didn't trust my black marker.

The thing I feared most was trying to put the final details on the kimono.  My Sakura Gelly Roll metallic pen scared the crap out of me because it's pretty juicy and not as fine a tip as I'd like but I tried gold pencil and  it didn't show up.  I considered just leaving it unpatterned but it looked unbalanced to me so I held my breath and started to try to draw in some of the details Mitzi had in her original.

Here's a closeup of the finished coloring.  I continued to shade and intensify the colors until it was to my liking.  I also finally decided to go over all of the original lines with my Copic multiliner to define the areas better.  The point of all this step by step is to show you that no image is too difficult if you break it into sections and take your time.  I double matted the image in textured matte gold and black cardstock and then added decorative paper with metallic threads from Black Ink Creative International Papers.  I ordered the little fans from the Frantic Stamper.  Aren't they cute?  This was a long road but I'm really glad I stuck it out.  The only thing I'd do differently is start sooner, but that probably isn't ever gonna happen, so I gotta say, I'm thrilled.  This baby's going in a frame.

Be sure to stop by the Challenge Blog and see the glorious inspiration by our Guest Designer and team and don't forget our January FB contest runs through the end of the month.  Hope to see you there.

Here's how to keep up with all that's happening at Aurora Wings.


  1. Wow Donna, this is exquisite, your colouring is amazing, the blend of colours is really beautiful and it's nice to hear that even the most amazing colourists get intimidated too x

  2. OMW, Donna! You colored this at 5 x 7!?!? Amazing!! Masks and kimono patterns and all the details must be so tiny in that size and yet your coloring is EXQUISITE! Love the oval shape with the gold accent to frame the colored image, too. No words can adequately express how amazed I am and how much I admire your tenacity and skills to complete a project like this. Thank you so much for the amazing inspiration for our first challenge of 2017 at Aurora Wings! Mitzi xxx

  3. I really have no words...this is amazing!! I loved your walkthrough, you seem to work like me - finding a part that is recognisable and gradually deducing each piece bit by bit until it is all done!!I love how you added all the extra detail freehand - such a brave decision but so effective!! So glad I beat you to the other image or we might not have got to see this beauty!!! xx

  4. This is AWESOME!!!!! I love it. The colors are FAB so exquiste
    Thank you for joining my DL.ART Thankful Thursday Anything Goes JANUARY Linky Challenge. Have a blessed day
    DIANA L.

    DL.ART crinkle ribbon

  5. This is breathtaking, Donna - such beautiful detail and on such a small image! x

  6. A true masterpiece, and a testament to your talents as a colorist. You really outdid yourself by adding all of those patterns and fine details. You rock!!

  7. Yup... wiping of some drewl.... FANTASTIC

  8. Absolutely stunning, Donna. I loved reading about how you went through the process. Thanks for sharing it with us. I've been at so many of the places you described - too scared, needing to start small and make something manageable, using someone else's work for a guide!! And in the end, it is all your work, right? Your color choices, your eye, your decisions about layering colors, details, etc. So bravo! This is one fantastic piece of work. You truly should frame this. Thanks for the inspiration! Hugs, Cathy

  9. Wow! Kind of speechless! Love your colouring! Thank you for joining our challenge at Lil Patch of Crafty Friends!


  10. Donna this is awesome!!! So beautifully colored and shaded. This will look so great in a frame. Love to see it again, once you have framed!! Sue.

  11. Another stunning and brilliant colouring creation. I love it. Great work.
    Thank you for sharing with us over here at Classic Design Team Open Challenge and best of luck with your entry.
    [Annette Registered Owner/Admin for Classic Design Team Challenge]

  12. A great card - very striking.

    Thanks for joining us at the Classic Design Team Open Challenge and we hope to see you back again next month.

    Helen x

  13. Stunning !! Thanxx For Sharing Your Beautiful Card With Us At Lil Patch Of Crafty Friends
    Sherry @ LPOCF DT


Thanks for making my day!