Wednesday, October 4

#WriteTip: Using Alternate Creativity To Clear Your Plot Problems

A couple of years ago, there was a huge push for adult coloring books. People said they were relaxing. People said they were creative. People said they were inspiring. I said I didn't like them. I even blogged about how much I didn't like it.

Today I'm blogging about being wrong about my feelings for adult coloring books.

Sort of.

I bought a new iPad about eight months ago and I love it. I especially love my iPencil - I'm now doing read-throughs of my books on my iPad, using my iPencil to mark up the pages in PDF format rather than killing trees by printing out entire books - sometimes multiple times - on actual paper. A couple of weeks ago, I was fiddling around with editing in one of my PDFs and started to doodle, which led to the coloring of the doodle, and the working out of a plot problem during the doodling-coloring-phase. Which led to Kristina's Brain thinking, "hmm, maybe there is something to adult coloring books."

And, since bebe had a couple of mandala coloring books lying around I decided to try it.

I. Hated. It. With the fire of a thousand suns. I didn't like the feel of the pencil in my hand (her colored pencils are hexagon shaped for 'easy handling' according to the packaging). I didn't like that I had to keep stopping and sharpening. I didn't like that getting the color just right entailed going over each section about fifteen bajillion times. I just didn't like it.

I wanted to like it, but it wasn't the same as when I was doodling on my iPad, with my iPencil. Which is when my brain really started to take over the problem. Maybe it's just coloring in a coloring book that I hated..maybe I needed to color/doodle on my tablet. Hmm...maybe they have an app for that.

Turns out, they do. They have apps for coloring, doodling, apps that will teach you to draw like a professional artist, apps that allow freeform doodling. I downloaded an app called Pigment...and I love it. Seriously. Love it.

I don't color all the time, but if I'm stuck on a plot problem or a character issue and if nothing else is working, I'll color for a bit. Or if I'm just looking for something to do with my hands, I've started to color within the app. My mind wanders, I fix problems. Sometimes, I just zone out and relax.

The pictures on the post are a couple of the pictures I've done this week...maybe I'll look at actual doodling apps next, but for right now, I'm enjoying how the coloring process is freeing my mind to work, to relax, and to just be.

What about you? Do you color or use some other creative release?                      ~Kristina

7 comments:

  1. How pretty these are and how artistic. I'm not sure I want to go there...yet. But I do the coloring (in all the places) seems to be good for people.

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    1. cooking is a great way to be creative - I don't have that gene, but I admire those who do!

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  2. These are lovely! I wouldn’t mind the adult coloring books but it hurts my eyes. I’d love to doodle but sadly don’t own an iPad. Sigh.... ;-)

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    1. I lurve my iPad - and I justify the expense because i use it as my main writing utensil. lol

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  3. I bought a color book but it’s a pain because my eyes aren’t that great and we have dim lights. Lol I like to do jigsaw puzzles—they seem to help me work out problems.

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    1. I haven't done a jigsaw puzzle in...too long! I used to love them.

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  4. I've often heard that doing something kind of mindless, like washing dishes helps to work out plot problems. I guess coloring is one of those mindless things. You relax and your brain goes straight to the problem without you consciously thinking about it. I get some of my best ideas in the shower! BTW, I love your coloring!

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