Improve your Coloring: Add Life & Zest to your Neutral Colors

Neutral color palettes do not have to be boring. Learn how to add artistic touches to improve your Copic Marker and colored pencil projects. |

Are Neutral Colors Bland?

Copic Marker fans love color. Colored pencil people love color.

That's why you color, right?

For most of you, it's rainbow, rainbow, rainbow all the time.

Bright reds, brilliant blues, verdant greens... bring on the color, baby!

Because I teach a lot of classes and I want my presentations to be unique, I do a lot of internet surfing; looking at other project photos and tutorials so that I'm not repeating tired concepts and techniques that have been done to death.

Beige or gray doesn't have to be boring! 4 tips for adding life and zest to neutral coloring palettes with Copic Markers or colored pencils. |

In that research, I see a lot of bold and vivid colors being used.

But not a lot of neutrals.

It seems that many colorers are afraid of the toned down and slightly muddy colors.

So you write them off as unimportant.

Bland and boring. Browns and beiges and foggy grays.


What a snoozefest!

I think that's really sad.

Neutral colors are only boring when you treat them that way!

Neutrals are some of the most interesting and complex colors available to artists. Many artists spend years, even decades learning to hand mix perfect neutral colors. If a whole bunch of artists are spending that much time studying one specific thing? Well, that's a sign. There must be something pretty darned important about neutrals.

So why aren't you using them in your coloring projects?

It's not that neutral color palettes are boring, it's that you're using them wrong!


Are you sick of Kiddie Color Palettes?

Do you want to improve the look of your coloring projects?

Are you searching for that polished professional look?

Are you tired of coloring like a circus clown or a 12 year old Disney Princess wanna-be?

Do your coloring projects have a childish look? Learn to add maturity and sophistication to Copic Marker or colored pencil projects with the use of neutral colors. |


Neutrals are the solution!

Neutral colors can add the sophistication you are looking for.

Adding more neutrals to your projects is not hard.

Don't build it up to be more taxing than it ought to be.

Four simple keys...

Just four? Yep.

I have four little tricks that I use to add life and zest to my neutral color palettes!

  1. Expand your definition of neutral - supplement the palette with near-neutrals like violet grays and dusty yellows.

  2. Use a full range of color values - don't get stuck at the zero end of the Copic color set!

  3. Don't skip texture and pattern - smooth & plain is boring no matter what color you use!

  4. Add some spice - find pop colors to provide some kicky interest

Want to know more?

Great, because there's a lot to explore. Remember, I've sat through all the boring color theory classes so that you don't have to.

I can't wait to share this fun lesson with you!


Join me for an introduction to neutral color palettes

Learn to add zest and liveliness to the colors you've always written off as boring.

It's not hard. You can do this!

Sorry, this class has expired. For the current list of Vanilla Livestream classes, please see here.

Vanilla Livestream lessons for Copic colorers. Learn to use neutral colors in a mature way. No more boring neutrals! |

What is Vanilla Live-Stream?

It's a live broadcast- just like the evening news but with me instead of the creepy weather guy in a toupee...

We'll have fun coloring with lots of Copics!

Neutral color palettes don't have to be bland and boring. 4 tips to spicing up your neutral beiges and grays for amazing Copic and colored pencil projects. |

This is just like my local intermediate & advanced level coloring classes, but online!

I'll walk you through my creation process, discussing the ins and outs of the coloring project. We always cover a bunch of artsy tips and tricks which you can apply to tons of other projects.

There's even a live chat feed so that you can ask questions and I'll answer live.

Every month, we tackle a new art technique or creative process, helping you develop your artistic skills and realism!

Can't attend live?

Not a problem!

All livestreams are recorded and available to members immediately after each broadcast for replay. You can watch six months worth of recorded sessions, replaying them as many times as you need to understand the lesson and finish the project.

Hey, that's something you definitely can't do in my live class!


20% off cup of Columbine!

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Marcella Hawley, the amazing artist at Power Poppy is giving all my Patreon members 20% off the class digital stamp! It's an instant download from; just print it to a Copic safe paper and color along with me!

Want to know more about how this class works?

Want the project supply list and lesson info?


April's Live-Stream:

You must be an enrolled at to participate

Sorry, this class has expired. For the current list of Vanilla Livestream classes, please see here.

Lesson: Adding life and zest to neutral color palettes

Stamp: Cup of Columbine by Power Poppy

Medium: Copic Marker and Prismacolor Premier Pencils

Skill Level: Intermediate through advanced colorers. Once you can blend Copics smoothly with confidence, you're ready to join us! No drawing skills necessary.

Vanilla Livestream online lessons for Copic colorers. Neutral colors don't have to be boring! Learn to add life & zest to your adult coloring projects. |

Join me online for zesty, spicy and special neutral colors

And a ton of coloring fun!

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Some products used in Cup of Columbine: (affiliate links)