2018 Color of the Year

Pantone’s Color of the Year is Ultra Violet. “A dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade, PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future.” according to Pantone.com.

Here are the Top 10 Purple Color Palettes inspired by the Color of the Year. May you have a creative and colorful 2018! I love this purple Chameleon pen I used on our coloring fitness journal Healthy Hue — another great tool to start the new year on the right track.

*HEALTHY HUE Coloring Health & Fitness Journal http://amzn.to/2kH5QIT

PDF version on Gumroad: https://gum.co/TeFwj

Preview: https://youtu.be/_cFUeqhUK0k

Which one is your favorite? Comment below. If you like this post, please share on Facebook, Pinterest and other social media. Thank you.

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Coloring Pages Card Tutorial

Coloring patterns can be relaxing as it frees your mind and puts you on a meditative state. Pick your colors and color away. But what do you do with your colored page afterwards?

The creative Lina Weikel shows us how to use pattern coloring pages for making cards. The sample coloring pages are from Color My Moods The BIG Christmas Coloring Book but you can use this idea any time of the year. Read her tips below for a step-by-step tutorial or watch it on our YouTube channel.

Here are Lina’s tips…


Color My Moods The BIG Christmas Coloring Book

Spectrum Noir Markers


Scissors or paper cutter

Glue or adhesive tape runner


Rhinestone stickers

1. Using Color My Moods The BIG Christmas Coloring Book, I picked out a card topper from the back of the book and also a patterned page from the book to use as a background.

  1. Next, I picked out a color palette from Scribo Creative’s Pinterest board “Color Palette”.

3. Then I found the 5 Spectrum Noir Markers that most closely matched the palette I had chosen. The markers were: DR7, DR3, TB9, VB3, and BGR1.

4. Once I had everything picked out and ready, I colored the background and then the topper in the color palette colors.

5. The next step was to cut the background page to size then mount it on a card blank leaving a slight edge of the card blank showing to act as a border.

6. I found a piece of red ribbon from my stash and used it to border the card topper. I also used some small red sticker rhinestones on the card topper to add a little pizzazz and bling to the card.

7. I positioned the card topper on the card and centered it in a landscape position. I then chose a few larger clear rhinestones to place in the corners of the card to tie everything together.

Thank you Lina for this informative tutorial!

In the spirit of Christmas, check out our Advent Calendar Color-Along event on Facebook for the final days of great giveaways.

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Spheres of Inspiration is here!

Color My Moods Spheres of Inspiration on Amazon
Color My Moods Spheres of Inspiration on Amazon

#1 New Release on Amazon! Color My Moods Spheres of Inspiration is a unique grayscale adult coloring book.

What is a grayscale coloring book? Grayscale images already have built-in shading with the different levels of gray. Just color with your favorite coloring medium — colored pencils, markers, pastels, and even gel pens. You’ll be amazed at how the spheres come alive before your eyes and even look 3D!

Just like the other adult coloring books and coloring journals in the Color My Moods series, Color My Moods Spheres of Inspiration grayscale coloring pages range from simple to intricate to suit your coloring mood for the day. It’s a great grayscale adult coloring book for beginners or an addition to your grayscale coloring book collection.

Color My Moods Spheres of Inspiration, a unique grayscale adult coloring book has:

42 coloring pages of beautiful, original drawings: 30 grayscale spheres with quotes and positive words; 5 bonus grayscale spheres from the original set without the text so you can customize with your own or use as color test pages; 7 bonus line art illustrations from other Color My Moods Adult Coloring Books and Journals.

Single-sided pages make it suitable for different media. We recommend using the extra blank sheets provided as blotter pages to minimize bleed-through.

Color My Moods Spheres of Inspiration is a beautiful adult coloring book just waiting to be colored in!

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Top 25 Festive Color Palettes

October kicks off the most celebrated quarter of the year. Here are Top 25 color palettes to inspire you throughout the festivities this time of year — from trick or treating to New Year’s Eve.

If you’re looking for something fun to color with, have a look at our coloring books, especially the Color My Moods BIG Christmas coloring bookHappy coloring!



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Battle of the Markers: Bic Marking vs. Sharpie


The first two sets of markers I bought for adult coloring books were Bic Markings and Sharpies. These two are probably the most popular marker brands among colorists but which one is better? I’ve included my two cents at the end of the article but we’ve also asked the talented Jan Adams to share her views about this battle of the markers. Here’s what she has to say…

In a world filled with different types of coloring mediums, I’m sure most people have a favorite coloring tool. My go-to coloring medium is markers and, within that, Sharpies and Bic Markings are probably my favorites.

There are many similarities between the two brands:
1. Both are alcohol-based markers. They color very smoothly, but will bleed. They are not suitable for use in double-sided coloring books and may require a piece of card stock placed under the coloring page if the paper is thin. Both types work very well on card stock and in books with thicker paper.
2. They are also both relatively inexpensive. I typically purchase my Sharpies at Staples because they normally have sets of 24 for about ten dollars. Wal-Mart is generally a little more expensive except during back-to-school sales. That’s when they have a set of 21 for 10 dollars. The remainder of the year the Sharpies will be around fourteen to seventeen dollars there. Bics are usually cheaper to order from Amazon. A good percentage of the year the 36 packs will be around twelve dollars. I have never seen them higher than twenty-three dollars at Amazon. I have not seen the 36 set in store at Wal-Mart, but it is possible some stores may carry it.
3. Both are also available in both fine and ultra-fine versions. This is very helpful when an image has both large spaces as well as smaller, intricate areas in the same design. It is possible to match the colors with the varying tip sizes.
4. One last commonality is the ability to buy single replacement markers. I personally haven’t bought them this way, but it is nice that this is an option. Individual Sharpies are available at most hobby stores, such as Hobby Lobby, and office supply stores like Staples. Bics can be ordered from the Bic website https://www.shopbic.com.


Now for the differences:
1. I suspect the most important difference for a number of people would be smell. While Bics have a slight odor, Sharpies have a very strong smell. If you are worried about the odor I would recommend buying a single black Sharpie (sold almost everywhere) and making sure that the odor is not offensive before buying a set. Singles of Bics are not readily available in-store, but Wal-Mart sells a set of twelve for a reasonable price.
2. The only other difference that I see between them is the variety of colors. Bics come in thirty-six colors, although you can buy smaller sets, and include quite a few pastels in that collection. Sharpies generally come in sets of twenty-four or less and do have limited release sets of five colors from time to time. They do not have much in the way of lighter colors.

Coloring book by Maria Castro of ScriboCreative.com

To sum up, I don’t see one set as preferable to another.
If you can afford it, my recommendations would be to buy both brands of markers. If not, I would think the deciding factor might come down to which colors you prefer to use. Either way you will get a great set of markers for the money.

Jan’s correct–the strong odor of Sharpies makes me more partial to Bic Marking. I’m sensitive to odors in general and when I color with Sharpies, I’m not able to do so for  a long time without getting dizzy from the smell. But I also know of some colorists who actually like the smell of Sharpies. So take Jan’s advice and see or rather, smell for yourself. 😊

Shopping list:

Maria Castro of ScriboCreative.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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12 Adult Coloring Background Tips

Not sure what to do with adult coloring book backgrounds? We came up with 12 creative ideas to add interest to your coloring pages using the background.

1. Starry Night/Galaxy background

One of the most dramatic background effects that looks intimidating at first but is easier than it looks. Vermaleine Barrios shows us how in a step-by-step tutorial here.

The result is amazing!

2. Black background
If you want to start slow, an all black background can also give a dramatic effect. The coloring page is from Color My Moods Simple Floral Patterns Coloring Pack. You can use your black medium — marker, colored pencil, combination of the two, acrylic paint, or in this case, I’ve used Maped Color’Peps Gel Crayons. 

3. Stippling
Mara Lula colored this lovely piece from Blessings in Bloom and did stippling (using several dots to create effect of varying depth/shade) on the background. The closer the dots are to each other, the darker the area appears. The farther apart they are, the lighter the area appears.

Mara likes to use either a pencil sharpened to a fine point or a fine-tipped marker like the Papermate Flair pen she used on this piece.

Background ideas from ScriboCreative.com

4. Crosshatching
Crosshatching is another drawing technique you can apply to backgrounds by drawing intersecting sets of parallel lines. As with stippling, the closer your lines are, the darker the area will appear, the farther apart they are, the lighter the area appears.

Mara used crosshatching for the “grass” on this inspirational coloring page from our Gumroad store.


5. Clouds
On the same piece, Mara created beautiful cloud effects using cloud templates she cut out of cardstock. She held them in place on the coloring page and used a blue chalk pastel over the top. The final step was rubbing the page to smooth out the pastel.


6. Pastels
If you like to keep it simple and just want to use pastels to create a border, that works too as Cindy Nation shows us on this piece from Healthy Hue Coloring Health & Fitness Journal.

You can use light short strokes with pastels and blend them using makeup cotton pads if you don’t like getting your fingers messy.

You can also use PanPastel like what Cindy did on #7. They work best using the sponges and applicator tools that come with the PanPastels.


7. Stencils
Stencils are a great way to add just enough interest to your coloring page as Cindy shows here with the “border” she added.

8. Texture plates
You can also use texture or rubbing plates (also referred to as embossing folders) on backgrounds. Cindy prefers using Faber Castell Classic pencils (oil based) for texture plates because she likes the pigment and finds the result much better.

You can also use woodless colored pencils or even crayons (on its side) to cover bigger coloring areas.

Here’s a video where we used rubbing plate to add  texture to the cross but you can as easily do this for the background.

9. Sponging
Natural and man-made sponges can add interest on your colored page by using it to apply color on the background.

Vermaleine Barrios used it towards the end of this tutorial:

Cindy Nation created a unique galaxy effect by layering acrylic paint using sponges on this coloring page from Healthy Hue Coloring Health & Fitness Journal.

Cindy used Marco Renoir colored pencils and fineliners for the mandala. She started on the background by mixing a small amount of Jo Sonja Payne’s gray and a bit of titanium white and a bit of water. She used the man-made sponge for this layer, pinching it to form a small point.

The first layer can be quite daunting but Cindy advises not to worry as this will lighten up with the addition of lighter colors in the next steps.

You need to work fairly quickly as the paint will dry out on your palette.  Dab and lift and fill your sponge with extra paint as necessary.

When the first layer is dry, choose and apply your next color. Cindy used Jo Sonja’s deep yellow and again added a drop of water and mix. She used the natural sponge this time around (test first with paint applied on another page until you find a section of sponge you are happy with). Let this layer dry.

For the final layer, Cindy used Jo Sonja’s titanium white.  Again add a drop of water and mix.  Sparingly apply to page where you feel it needs it.

10. Bokeh
Another cool background effect is the Bokeh. Here’s a step-by-step video tutorial that Vermaleine Barrios shared using a coloring page from Healthy Hue.

11. Rhinestone sticker
Sometimes adding just the right embellishment makes a colored page looks more finished as Robin Petersen Wilson showed on this cool colored page from Healthy Hue Coloring Health & Fitness Journal. Less is more so start with a few and add as needed.

12. Washi tape
Lastly, if you’re a crafter (or even if you’re not), you may want to pull out your washi tapes. Similar to masking tape but so much cuter, you can get creative with it and use it as background on your coloring page as Robin did here on the Valentine’s coloring page from our Gumroad store.

Apply the tape lightly over the whole area you want to cover, then use a sharp X-acto knife to cut around your edge. Be careful not to cut very deep. This may take some practice, so you cut only the tape and not cut through your page.

On the tape for this page to cover the whole page, Robin laid strips of tape side by side, covered the whole page and cut out the squares after she colored them. You can do this step before or after you color, but you don’t want to stick the tape down hard or it will lift your work.

We hope that these background coloring  tips sparked your imagination. Thank you to our talented colorists who shared their ideas with us — Vermailene Barrios, Mara Lula, Cindy Nation and Robin Petersen Wilson.

Which of these have you tried or are excited to try? Do you have other favorite background techniques? We’d love to hear your comments.

If you find this article helpful, sign up for our enews to be the first to get the scoop: https://www.scribocreative.com/enews/. You can also pin this article or share on social media.

Maria Castro of ScriboCreative.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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Mother’s Day Challenge

Celebrate motherhood with us and win some fun coloring goodies, including a 12 color pen set of Luna Jayne glitter gel pens and a personalized coloring pack, while you’re at it: https://www.facebook.com/events/170283746831361/?ti=ia. Click “Going” to get all the updates.

Mom/mum and loved one can choose the same coloring page to color together or separately. Entries must be posted By Saturday, March 13th, 11 pm Eastern. Three prizes will be awarded along with daily random winners from our posts. You can color any of Maria’s artwork or use the free coloring pages provided exclusively to event goers. See the event’s pinned post for complete details.

Or check out our paperback coloring books and journals on Amazon plus our amazing PDF journal and mandala coloring bundles — all on sale as our special Mother’s Day gift to you. Sale good through May 15th.

***SPECIAL Live Tutorial with Luna Jayne’s owner/artist/colorist Deborah Kramer Thursday, May 11th, 8-9 pm Eastern (New York time)/7-8 pm Central/5-6 Pacific, to show us how easy and fun it is to mix Luna Jayne glitter gel pens using one of our Mommyism coloring pages. We’ll also have a sweet surprise for a lucky guest at the end of the presentation. See you there!

Maria Castro of ScriboCreative.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.


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Battle of the Pencils: Polychromos vs. Prismacolor Premier

Poly or Prisma?” is probably one of the most asked colored pencil questions in Facebook coloring groups and for a good reason. Both Faber Castell Polychromos and Prismacolor Premier are popular artist-grade colored pencils that can be considered as investments. They are high quality colored pencils but are more expensive than other brands. So what’s the difference between the two? Which should you buy?

To help us with this week’s Battle of the Pencils article is the talented colorist Donna Pecoraro. The lovely coloring page is from Maria Castro’s upcoming book MIDNIGHT Doilies, Doodles & Daydreams (also available as a Personalize It page here: https://gum.co/DNwIw).

As with other coloring tools, a lot of it has to do with personal preference. Chime in and let us know in the comments section below what you think of the review.

The Ultimate Colored Pencil Controversy

If you’ve been in the coloring world for long, one of the topics you’ll be sure to see lots of comments about are the preferences for “Polys” vs. “Prismas”. Ultimately, it really is a matter of personal preference, although each colorist probably has lots of reasons for their choice of a favorite, and many will switch between them.
The main difference is composition of the pencil. Faber Castell Polychromos have been made by a Germany company in existence since 1761 and are oil based. Prismacolor Premier pencils are made by an American company and are wax based.

Since oil is a more fluid medium than wax, you will find that the Polys will have more ability to absorb into the paper while the Prismas will have less ability to do that. The result of this is that the Prismas will have less ability to blend multiple layers before the paper will no longer allow an additional layer to adhere. In comparison, Polys will blend and blend having the more fluid medium of oil.

The largest set of Prismas is 150 colors, including a large selection of 18 greys, which are divided into French Grey, Cool Grey, and Warm Grey, each with a percentage gradation of 10%, 20%, 30%, 50%, 70%, and 90%. In Polys the largest set is 120, and the grey selection of 12 pencils is divided into Warm and Cold, and numbered with Roman numerals from I to VI (1-6) to indicate gradation from pale to dark.

Polys also include 3 metallics, Gold, Silver, and Copper, while Prismas have Gold and Silver, and 3 “Neon” colors (Note that if you scan your work, neons do not show up well).

Color range of the pencils differ greatly, the strong point of Prismas is having some extraordinarily subtle and lovely colors, such as Nectar, Jasmine, Seashell Pink, and Pale Sage to name a few. There are also many pencils useful for skin tones in Prismas, in fact, they sell a subset of pencils for portraiture that are included in the 132 set. Both brands are available as open stock in better art supply stores and can always be replenished.

As far as pencil quality, we would be comparing two different price points, so the comparison is not entirely fair. Polys are priced at approximately $170-190 US for the 120 tin, while Prismas are priced at approximately $80-100 US for the 150 tin. Polys are an extremely well made and beautiful pencil. They are slightly wider in width and have a harder, well centered core of pigment. They sharpen very well and rarely break, but do require a sharpener that can accommodate their width.

The Prismas have had issues with breakage, although not all have this complaint, their core is softer, their pigment is often off center, and wood barrels have been known to split. Both brands are considered to be artist grade pencils. Being a softer pencil, Prismas require more sharpening to keep a point, and are depleted faster, so although initially a cheaper investment in the long run the more expensive Polys may be more cost effective. Both pencil brands require careful handling to ensure best performance.

Lastly, we each will have our opinions on the “best “pencil. Much of this depends on what we use them for, if we use solvents, such as blender markers, Gamsol, mineral spirits, or Vaseline, how much time we want to spend on a picture, what type of pictures we like to color, and even if we need a softer pencil for issues of hand strength. Most importantly, enjoy your premium pencils if you are lucky enough to have been able to purchase them, they are truly a luxury.

Thank you to Donna for a comprehensive review. Both Polychromos and Prismacolor Premier are available in smaller sets if you like to try a set of each (as of today, several of the Prisma Premier sets including the 150-piece, have the lowest price we’ve seen recently):

Maria Castro of ScriboCreative.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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Battle of the Pencils: Oil-based Colored Pencils Comparison

Have you been wondering why many rave about Faber Castell Polychromos? It’s one of the more expensive brands of colored pencils but is it worth the investment? Are there cheaper alternatives that are just as good?

If you’re a fan of oil-based colored pencils, you’ll find Cindy Nation’s review informative and interesting.

Cindy owns four brands of oil-based colored pencils and has generously reviewed all four for us — Faber Castell Polychromos, Faber Castell Classic, Marco Renoir and Marco Raffine. Cindy lives in Australia as you’ll notice on her price quotes but we’ve added Amazon.com links within the article for your convenience.

She chose one of the motivational full-size pages from HEALTHY HUE — A Coloring Health & Fitness Journal with Positive Affirmations, to color in and show the differences.

Let us know if you’ve had similar experiences by leaving a comment at the end of the article below. Enjoy the review!

Healthy Hue

This beautiful image is from Maria’s new coloring journal HEALTHY HUE.  I have coloured this using four brands of oil-based pencils: Faber Castell Polychromos, Faber Castell Classic, Marco Renoir and Marco Raffine.  The wording at the top “I can reach my goal” double section is coloured using Polychromos.  Then each double section following that in a clockwise direction are: Classic, Renoir and Raffine.  The “goal” is coloured using Polychromos.  I tried my best to colour match across the four brands of pencils.

Here is my comparison and personal opinion of these four brands of pencils: The core in oil-based pencils is harder making them less likely to break and helps keep a sharper point for longer. I use a good quality sharpener and haven’t had issues with breakage of leads.  They all have rich pigment, although the Marco Raffines aren’t quite as good as the other three.

I prefer the Polychromos colored pencils but you will pay more for them.  They blend and shade beautifully without much effort.  Available in sets of 12, 24, 36, 60 and 120 or as individuals in some art shops and Ebay.  As I’m from Australia, I bought my set at my local Riot store when they had a sale.  A set of 12 is available for $27.50 AUD ($19.35 US) or a set of 120 $273.50 AUD ($193.50 US) + shipping.

However, the Faber Castell Classic colored pencils are a budget pencil which still shade and blend nicely but you do have to work a bit harder to get a good result.  Available in sets of 12, 24, 36 and 48.  A set of 12 is available for only $3.50 AUD at my local Kmart store.  These pencils are available in most department stores at a very good price but not individually as far as I can tell.

Marco Renoir colored pencils are artist grade and better quality than their less expensive counterpart Marco Raffine.  They blend and layer well, are much creamier and give a vibrant colour.  I bought mine from Ebay but recently bought a larger set from Wish.  Available in sets of 24, 36, 48, 72, 100.  A set of  24 is approximately $21 US or set 100 $60 available from Ebay (be careful of are extra shipping charges).  As far as I can tell these are not available as individuals.

Marco Raffine colored pencils are a student grade pencil.  I found that you can still blend and shade but they are not as smooth as the other three brands.  I bought mine from Ebay.  Available in sets of 24, 36, 48, 72.  24 pencils are $6.99 US on Ebay (shipping charges extra).  No individual pencils are available.

If you are starting out with pencils, I would recommend an oil-based pencil for ease of sharpening and excellent pigment. Overall, I am happy with all the brands I’ve mentioned.  My budget recommendation would be Faber Castell Classic colored pencils and top-priced Polychromos if you can afford them. Renoir is good if you can’t afford Polychromos. I started with medium set and was very impressed! Renoir is equal to Polychromos in pigment.

Four brands ranked according to Blending Quality, with 1 being the best:
1. Faber Castell Polychromos
2. Marco Renoir
3. Faber Castell Classic
4. Marco Raffine

Colour Variety (per set) Ranking:
This refers to how varied the color choices are for any given set provided. Note that this a tricky category to compare. For example, Marco Raffine’s smallest set has 24 colored pencils whereas Faber Castell Classic come in 12.
1. Faber Castell Classic
2. Marco Renoir
3. Marco Raffine
4. Faber Castell Polychromos
Polychromos colored pencils have no pink in the small set and they are ranked last. Classic colored pencils are ranked first because they have pink and gold in their small set. A great small set with great variety of colours.

Colour Variety (overall) Ranking: 

1. Faber Castell Polychromos
2. Marco Renoir
3. Faber Castell Classic
4. Marco Raffine
120 Polychromos colored pencils are ranked first. It’s the biggest set with great variety of colours. Faber Castell Classic colored pencils  are not available in a big set and therefore aren’t ranked as highly.

Cost Ranking:

1. Faber Castell Classic (most affordable)
2. Marco Raffine
3. Marco Renoir
4. Faber Castell Polychromos
I always recommend buying the biggest set of what you can afford. Faber Castell Classic colored pencils are a great low cost, all-rounder that blend and shade well and have good pigment.

Overall ranking taking cost and performance into account:
1. Marco Renoir
2. Faber Castell Classic
3. Faber Castell Polychromos
4. Marco Raffine
Marco Renoir colored pencils are a good price for a great product that have good pigment that blend and shade well.

I always do a price comparison before I buy online and in-store.  I like to get the best price particularly if I’m paying more for a better-quality product. I recommend buying the biggest set you can afford as you get more colour variety within the set.

We hope Cindy’s oil-based colored pencil review helped you decide on the best brand to get. However, as with many coloring activities, the choice of coloring medium is a personal choice and a matter of preference. If you’re not as adventurous as Cindy, try a smaller set of the brand before investing in a bigger set. Or, like Cindy, maybe you can have a bit of everything :).

Do you like this article? Connect with us and be among the first to know about exclusive deals and coloring tips. Sign up for our enews and even get an instant sample pack printables of Color My Moods Day and Night (Volumes 1-3).

Maria Castro of ScriboCreative.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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