Color Inspiration: Sweet Treats with a Twist of Psychedelic Shading

Color Inspiration: Sweet Treats with a Twist of Psychedelic Shading


Just when you think desserts can't get any sweeter, creative and imaginative bakers across the globe up their games by infusing every color of the rainbow into their delicious confections! We've gathered some of our favorite tummy and eye pleasing pastries, smoothie pops, and other sweet treats that include our absolute favorite colors, along with our homemade palettes that will have you smiling from ear to ear. Feel free to add your own fave confection conceptions in the following comment section as well. We always love hearing from you here in our Colourlover "family" forum!

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Tie-Dye Another Day

Psychedelic colors swirl throughout this oh-so-sweet and vibrant slice of birthday cake! While gazing at this over-the-top, rainbow-riddled pastry, we are not only  inspired to create one aww-mazing color palette to match, but we also have to admit that we started to get a bit of a hypnotic headache feel, mesmerized by that seemingly spinning spectrum of colors!

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Tie-Dye_Another_Day

MACAROON MANIA

Italy and France are the two European countries that first popularized this pretty and petit sweet treat. However, the delicious faux cookies have actually been around since ancient times, their original recipe being simpler: Almonds ground into a paste, mixed with honey and baked. The main difference between early, traditional macaroons and cookies is that real macaroons don't contain flour, while cookies do. In fact, the word itself--macaroon--is rooted in the Italian word "macaroni," which literally translates to ground almond paste. Traced back even more in history, the Greek root word for macaroon is "makakis," which translates as "blessed food". And we like the sound of that! Add some sweet pastel and other pretty, eye-pleasing colors, and it's a win for everybody!

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Macaroon_Mania

I SCREAM FOR COLOR

Did you know that it's been estimated to take about 50 licks to put away one entire scoop of ice cream?! And speaking of licking, that more men (13% in fact!) admit to licking their ice cream bowls clean of every last bit, versus the mere 8% of women who admitted to their affinity for making sure not to miss a drop! And what are America's favorite flavors, according to recent surveys? Vanilla, chocolate, butter pecan, strawberry, and mint chocolate chip, which definitely seem to be represented in this image and accompanying palette--each offering their own unique taste, and hue.

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BERRIED TREASURE

You don't have to be a tough-as-nails, swash-buckling pirate to enjoy this colorful bounty of berried treasure. Filled with yummy strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries, this mini-dessert makes for a lovely palette of varying shades. And because here at Colourlovers, we adore all fun facts, here's a few to enlighten and amuse you: Did you know strawberries were used as a medicinal herb in Rome in the 13th Century? Or that an entire Belgian museum is dedicated just to strawberries!? And perhaps our personal favorite berry "bit," for those who have ever eaten a rarely found double strawberry, there's an old wive's tale that if you break one of these crimson gems in half and share it with a member of the opposite attraction, you will have them literally eating out of your hand--led by the magical split strawberry to fall head over heels in love with you, that is!

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Berried_Treasure

MAGIC TRIX

Although that silly rabbit may like to spread his stories about how Trix are just for kids, this technicolor sweet treat seen below, joyfully sprinkled with our favorite "kids'" cereal to boot, begs to differ! Because let's face it, only a real man or woman could handle this two-fisted ice cream style sammich'!

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SMOOTH(IE) OPERATOR

Remember those hot summer days of childhood, when your mom would let you help her make your favorite homemade popsicles?! We sure do! So when we spotted these smoothie-inspired fruity and fun versions below, we had to shake our creative cobwebs loose from our brains and immediately bust out a brilliant color palette to match! It sure helps that they used "delicious" colors to concoct their icy treats!

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FRUITOPIA

Far from forgetting (or loving any less!) all of those health nuts out there in our Colourlovers community, we made sure to include in our list of faves a fruit-inspired sweet treat. From its buttery yellow juicy chunks of tropical pineapple to its vibrant crimson slices of strawberry, mellow hued honeydew melon, and  blueberries bursting with color that is anything but sad, this aptly named dessert "fruitopia" does seem pretty near perfect. And even though the white, billowy whipped cream doesn't boast a bold or crazy pigment, we're pretty sure our palettes (both taste and color!) are sure glad to have it represent!

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BLAST FROM THE PASTEL

When one thinks of pastel colors, the adjectives that instantly come to mind are most often words like "soothing", "soft", "milky", or "muted." Well, we got to thinking on this, and we don't know about you, but we can't help but wonder if sometimes, pastels find our descriptions just a wee bit patronizing! Far from being the weakest links of the color wheel, we personally find that--at least in our hearts--these chilled out shades of pink, purple, blue, green, and yellow pack a powerful punch, precisely for their mellow vibes, mon!

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Blast_from_da_Pastel

YOU SAY GOODBYE, I SAY JELLO!

Jello. No one is quite sure WHAT it IS, but we all sure seem to each have some fond or silly memory from childhood involving the colorful, quivering, gelatinous sweet treat. Our favorite reminiscent blast from the past involving this strange concoction are whipping up a batch of our favorite flavor and breaking out the animal cookie cutters, instantly transforming a boring square pan of goo into a proverbial zoo of giraffes, lions, and bears (oh my!)  And although we didn't have our animal shapes handy, we did create a color palette paying homage to this, one of our most cherished childhood desserts!

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Goodbye_Jello

I DONUT UNDERSTAND 

Although, officially, the Dutch are credited with first bringing donuts to the U.S. in the 1800s--calling them “olykoeks”, or oily cakes, nonetheless!--America definitely doesn't slouch when it comes to keeping up the tradition of ensuring that these gooey gooey fried sweet treat stick around, as the majority of Americans (despite the original nickname) are known to practically inhale them on a daily basis! And if you think the Dutch moniker is less than stellar, wait till you hear what the French first named the small fried fritters: “pets de nonne“ or “nun’s farts”! Really. Regardless of whatever you call these delicious doughy sweet treats, the palette(s) they inspire are beyond fun to create!

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Color in Clothing: Swipe Right for Ugly Sweaters with Happy, Rainbow Hues

Color in Clothing: Swipe Right for Ugly Sweaters with Happy, Rainbow Hues


Here it is, mid-January already, and chances are that the majority of us Colourlovers attended at least one ugly sweater party during the recent December holiday season. Besides being a silly and fun way of dressing up in ridiculously wacky (and in most cases, super tacky!) attire, these festivities are also filled with, you guessed it, a dazzling array of rainbow hues (albeit housed in hideous threads!) We've gathered some of our favorite ugly sweater samples, alongside our created palettes which they inspired, for your viewing pleasure (and benign ridicule?). Feel free to jump in with photos and palettes of your own--we'll make a party out of it :)

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LASER SURGE-RY

We weren't quite sure what to make of this feline-infused affair. But regardless of whether it's your particular taste, you have to admit it's versatile and vivid color palette is the cat's meow!

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LASER_SURGE-RY

POTUS PIZAZZ

We have to believe that good-natured President Obama would be a good sport about being featured (donning bedazzled Christmas bulb earrings and all) on this holiday-inspired ugly sweater. From its crimson tinsel to its 3-D lime and green poinsettia petals, this sweater displaying the departing POTUS--complete with his shiny, dangling jewelry--is nothing short of spectacular.

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POTUS_PIZAZZ

POM POM PALOOZA

Remember high school football games? Back in the day, when cheerleaders shouted their rhyming words of encouragement while dancing up a storm and shaking their colorful pom poms with all the fervor of a thousand furies? We do too! This ugly sweater definitely takes us back, offering a oh-so-bright and colorful nod to nostalgia, and all things adolescence.

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POM_POM_PALOOZA

NOSIN' AROUND

With wintry weather comes cold and frigid temperatures, low degrees which leave apparently even reindeer noses rosy and red in the chill. This ugly sweater, featuring who we can only assume is the most famous reindeer of them all, has Rudolph's nose rivaling any circus clown's fire engine-inspired schnoz, and not to mention, he's surrounded by a sea of blue, and polk dots to boot!

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NOSIN_AROUND

BOA-D TO THE BONE

Gold, sparkling tinsel. Neon pink feathers. Need we say more? Here is one ugly sweater that is no slouch when it comes to going all out in adornment! Let's just say, especially when taking a gander at its bubblegum hue-larious color, this sweater just tickles us pink!

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BOA-D_TO_THE_BONE

HO HO HODGEPODGE

Merriam Webster defines the word "hodgepodge" as being "a confused mixture of several different things," which is exactly why our chosen moniker for the mayhem that scarcely contained in this ugly sweater is nothing short of sheer perfection. From its jolly bright red ribbons and bows to the bearded Santas swinging from its sleeves, and even right down to the edible candy canes careening their crooked necks down the collar and torso, this quirky Christmas sweater is one Ho Ho Hodgepodge that has us smiling from ear to ear.

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HO_HO_HODGEPODGE

TINSEL TOWN

While the mention of "Tinsel Town" may initially make most think of the glitz and glamour of Hollywood with its iconic bright lights and film-worthy cameras, our December-inspired ugly sweater raises a no-less-equal amount of hoopla in its own rite! Can we say sparkle?!

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BLUE CHRISTMAS BLING

Wearing this snazzy, colorful number, the ONLY thing blue about you will be your holiday attire. Maybe a bit over the top, you ask? Nah!

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BLING CROSY

The iconic and beloved Bing Crosby stars in one of our all-time favorite Christmas films--one we watch every year as a family tradition in fact! And while good ole' Bing's film pays tribute to a White (snow-filled) Christmas, this ugly sweater--infused with vivid burgundy, cherry red, gold, and green tones--inspires a spinoff name that is decidedly more colorful, and fun!

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UGLY BOO-TIFULL

And before you go figuring all ugly sweaters have to be Christmas-themed, behold the eh, beauty (?) of this color-bedecked gem! Although the colors are bright and indeed merry (who can gaze at such neon splendor and not at least crack an amused smile?), this decidedly Halloween-inspired creation, while not quite beautiful in the conventional sense, could indeed be dubbed "Boo-tifull!"

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UGLY_BOO-TIFULL

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Color Inspiration: Sensational Street Art Featuring Every Shade

Color Inspiration: Sensational Street Art Featuring Every Shade


We’ve all been there. Walking down the road, enjoying an outdoor stroll when the weather if fine, or driving along on our ways to our next destination, when we’re literally stopped in our tracks by stunning—and colorful—improvisational artistry. Whether it be whimsical murals birthed from the womb of a professional painter commissioned specifically for the space, or random passersby who saw said wall as a blank canvas just waiting to be covered, street art—from measured graphic designs to free style graffiti—is as versatile as it is often colorful, and we love it.

Here are some of our favorite random street art creations alongside the palettes they inspired. We’d love to see some of your own snapshots of your favorite neighborhood street art and accompanying created Colourlovers palettes as well, community! So jump on in and share the Colourlove!

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"SNAKE CHARMER"

Gazing at this whimsical mural is nothing short of mesmerizing. It's beautiful, serpent-infused design definitely casts a certain inspirational spell.

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Snake_Charmer

"DREAM CATCHER QUEEN"

Walking by this mural makes us wonder just what this divine goddess is dreaming of. Whatever it is, the colorful hues swirling around her sure are heavenly.

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Dream_Catcher_Queen

"SAY EYE"

Perhaps via a respectful nod to famed Picasso, the painter behind this bold and lively mural sure knows how to make an impression. All in favor of this fun fantasy-inspired street art, say "eye"!

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Say_Eye

"WHEN YOU SMILIN'"

We saw this street art and couldn't help but smile. If laughter is said to be infectious, this man's widespread grin could only be described then as nothing short of contagious! We're more than fine "catching" whatever positivity he is passing around!

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When_You_Smilin

"DREAM WHISPERS"

Zen is the word that first comes to mind when passing this peace-riddled work of street art. As much as we long to know what this beautiful muse is, well, musing about (!), we also just can't seem to dare disturb her idyllic reverie in order to inquire. We'll have to be content to allow her dreams only to whisper to her as she dwells in her own little reverie world.

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Dream_Whispers

"TO BUILD A HOME"

Who wouldn't want to live in this quirky, fun community of colorful stacked abodes?! We sure would! Consider this blog post our version of officially signing up for the waiting list of intended residents in this rainbow-infused, topsy-turvy apartment complex!

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To_Build_A_Home

"WHAT A CROC!"

Who doesn't love the Crocodile Hunter?! We sure do! And when you add untamed wild animals and swirls of psychedelic pigment, including purple and teal tones? Well Crikey! ...then it's just darn near perfection!

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What_a_Croc

"STAR GAZER"

Starlight. Starbright. This stunning street art mural seems to capture the first star this beauty sees tonight.

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Star_Gazer

"OCEANS AWAY"

Sea-inspired street art is one of the most popular genres of murals one will come across. Yet, luckily for pedestrians and drivers, and all other appreciators, the ocean has so many versatile animals and enigmatic colors within it, the art--and inspired palettes alongside--are near endless and never get old to ooh and ahh over.

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COME FLY WITH ME

Butterflies are also an often-included symbol within street art. Yet, as it is with ocean themes, so too do we never seem to tire of motifs featuring lovely monarch varieties and the like of these little beauties.

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Come_Fly_With_Me

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Color Inspiration: Houses of Every Hue

Color Inspiration: Houses of Every Hue


Our world is filled with a wondrous array of color, including the exterior adornment of our own abodes. From the iconic Rainbow Row in Charleston to Mexico’s nutty and shell-shaped Nautilus House, the homes that literally color our earth are beyond amazing. Here are a few of our favorite fairyland residences along with the palettes each inspire. Feel free to add your own preferred unique and colorful cribs (with your own signature palettes) to the mix below!

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THE NAUTILUS HOUSE, MEXICO

Nestled right near Mexico City, the well-known Nautilus House is a quite eccentrically wonderful residence. Designed by Mexican architect Javier Senosiain, the creative and innovative structure is said to have been loosely modeled after the works stemming from the genius of the likes of Gaudi, Frank Lloyd Wright, and more. Known as what Senosiain described as “Bio-Architecture,” the concept for this design is aimed at using buildings based upon the natural principles of their organic forms in order to return us back to connection with our local culture’s history, traditions, and roots, as well as the building itself maintaining a balance and harmony with nature.

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Shellshocked

MMMMMM-WORTHY RESIDENCE IN MYKONOS, GREECE

This cheery and bright private residence located in Mykonos, Greece had to be included on the list, as who could possible gaze at its happy blues, vibrant cherry reds, and joyful sunshine yellows without smiling? We sure can’t!

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More_color_Mykonos!

HUNDERTWASSERHAUS, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

A well-known apartment house located in Vienna, Austria, the Hundertwasserhaus was built with the aid of architect Joseph Krawina, alongside—and according to the concept’s created by—Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, who not surprisingly, first began work as a painter.

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PRIVATE RESIDENCE, BROOKLYN, NEW YORK

A residence worthy of an address in the land of OZ, or perhaps, Fairy Neverland, this neon-esque abode takes shock and awe to an entirely new level. Vibrant and in-your-face electric shades every shade of the rainbow invite every visitor to tap into the color-loving kid within. We’re fans!

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Bedazzled_Brooklyn

ROCHOR CENTRE, SINGAPORE

Originally built by Singapore’s Housing and Development Board in 1977, then 4-block group of buildings is a public beacon of bright and happy vibes, consisting of yellow, green, red, and blue yay-worthy installments. Sadly, this lovely landmark is being demolished in order to make way for the construction of Singapore’s North-South Expressway.

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Rainbow_Rochor

CASA BATLLO, BARCELONA, SPAIN

One of Antoni Gaudi’s most famous and beloved architectural masterpieces, Casa Batlló may be found in the bustling center of Barcelona. Originally constructed as a remodel of a previously built house, Gaudi returned to redesign the structure in 1904, along with several assistants. The jaw-dropping home received its moniker (literally translating to “House of Bones”) due to the design’s “visceral,” “skeletal,” and “organic” character.

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Gaudi_Grandeur

ISTANBUL, TURKEY

An ancient and mesmerizing city in its own rite, Istanbul is infused with colorful mosques, iridescent tilework, and so much more that appeals to the eye (and heart). But the vast beauty in this city’s architecture isn’t limited to its spiritual houses of worship, but rather extends to private residences as well, as seen in this technicolor display of local residential townhouses.

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Irie_Smiley_Istanbul

MOSCOW, RUSSIA

When one thinks of Russia, cold is a word that often instantly comes to mind. Yet for this section of homes spotted in Moscow, the happy feels infused by their rainbow-riddled residences can’t help but “warm” you up, heart and soul.

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Rainbow_Arches

WIMEREUX HOUSE, FRANCE 

About as close to a real world gingerbread house in appearance as one can find, this Wimereux residence in France fosters joy and cheerful emotions in all who pass by, and especially in those who are lucky enough to stay here.

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Whim-ereuex

RAINBOW ROW, CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA

Word famous Charleston’s Rainbow Row is comprised of thirteen historic houses spanning nearly every shade and hue of the—you guessed it—rainbow. The line of collected residences also happens to represent the longest string of Georgian row houses existing in the entire United States. Pastel and popping with pigment, this iconic landmark remains to this day one of Charleston’s most photographed and popular tourist attractions.

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Rainbow_Row

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Color in Nature: Inspiration in Beautiful Bodies of Water

Color in Nature: Inspiration in Beautiful Bodies of Water


It's been said that "colors are the smiles of nature," and if such a sentiment is true, then the oceans, seas, rivers and lakes of our world must be joyful entities indeed, as these bodies of beautiful water are practically beaming with an array of shades spanning every realm of the rainbow. Here are a few of our favorite flowing kaleidoscopes of color, what are some of yours?

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CAÑO CRISTALES RIVER, COLOMBIA

Known also as "the river of five colors," this natural phenomenon morphs into a non-too-muted vibrant shade of crimson each autumn like clockwork. Its change in color is attributed to a local native plant sourcing psychedelic-inspiring minerals and nutrients, apparently.

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Cano_Cristales_Can!

LAKE RETBA, SENEGAL

Every child (and grown adult's) bubblegum dream, Senegal's Lake Retba gets its pastel pink hue from a non-dangerous bacteria that absolutely adores the saltiness of its waters.

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Lake_Retba_Lovin

GREAT BARRIER REEF, AUSTRALIA

One of the famed wonders of the world, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia harbors a plethora of coral, seaweed, and fish species, which more than explains its near endless and exhaustive color kaleidoscope seen here.

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Rainbow_Reef

LAKE NATRON, TANZANIA

Shallow and uber-salty, Lake Natron in Tanzania is so salty, in fact, that it's most flora and fauna can't survive here. But on the plus side? The incredible colors it creates, including bright red water and ooh-la orange shores.

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Lake-Like_Lava

EMERALD LAKES, NEW ZEALAND

Emerald Lakes is an iconic lake located in New Zealand's Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Incredibly, this natural wonder's yellow-edged enigmatic water is absolutely pure.

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Ooh-aaah_Emerald

GRÜNER SEE, AUSTRIA

Grüner See, which is literally translated as "Green Lake," is a lake found in Styria, Austria. This beautiful gem is surrounded by the Hochschwab Mountains and forests, and received its moniker from the marvelous depths of rich emerald-green water it consists of, which comes directly from the snowmelt from the nearby mountains.

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Seeing_Grune

LAGUNA COLORADA, BOLIVIA

Laguna Colorada, also known as "Red Lagoon," is found within Bolivia's Eduardo Avaroa Andean Fauna National Reserve. Close to the border with Chile, the fact that the vibrant colored lake houses within it borax islands (which are responsible for the white color) provides a perfectly picturesque contrast with the crimson color of its waters (the red deriving form red sediments and pigmentation of algae).

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Lovin_Laguna!

BLUE POOLS, HAAST PASS, NEW ZEALAND

Fed by natural pure glaciers, the water in these magnificent pools is the deepest azure blue, and so translucent, it provides you a crystal clear view right to the bottom.

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Baby_Blue_Pools

 

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Color in Nature: Inspiration in Fields of Gold, and More

Color in Nature: Inspiration in Fields of Gold, and More


Fields of Gold, and more

All the world over, Mother Nature is busy brandishing her paintbrush, creating her own mesmerizing palettes filled with blooms, blades of green grass, and rows upon rows of respondence. Here are some of our favorite fields of gold, and beyond. Feel free to jump on in and post your own favorite fields, and coinciding palette creations!

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LAVENDER FIELDS, FRANCE

The summer months find the rolling lavender fields of Provence in France near to bursting with bright purple blooms spreading as far as the eye can see.

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Lavender_Lovin

SHIBAZAKURA HILL, JAPAN

Spring finds the fields at the base of Mount Fuji springing up and “blushing” with near endless mountains of moss blooms, also known as shibazakura.

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SHIBAZAKURA_Smiles~

LUOPING, CHINA

This section of Eastern China boasts sprawling farmlands filled with a golden sea of canola blooms, when the yellow sunlit-shaded crop is in season.

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Fields_of_Gold~

TULIP FIELDS, HOLLAND

Spring is the prime time to catch Holland’s famed and immaculately manicured tulip, daffodil and hyacinth fields in full bloom.

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Trippin_Thru_Tulips

SUNFLOWER FIELDS, TUSCANY

These bright and joyful beauties abound throughout Tuscany's rolling hillsides.

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Under_the_Tuscan_Sun

DUBAI MIRACLE GARDEN, UAE

The Dubai Miracle Garden is found in the district of Dubailand in the United Arab Emirates. First debuted officially on Valentine's Day in 2013, this colorful and vibrantly-hued garden spans over 72,000 square meters--a massive spread that marks it as the world's largest natural flower garden, boasting more than 109 million blooms.

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Dazzling_Dubai

FLOWER FIELDS OF FURANO, JAPAN 

Furano is famous for its lavender fields, but numerous assortments of buds, blooms, and other flowers are spread throughout the region, beginning to bloom in May, and offering a warm and welcoming greeting to guests visiting the area.

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Nakafurano_Nuances

COLORFUL KEUKENHOF GARDENS, HOLLAND

Keukenhof is said by many as being among the most beautiful spring gardens across the globe, with more than seven million tulips, daffodils and hyacinths smiling happily at visitors across the garden's more than 32 hectares infused with vibrant color and lovely floral aromas.

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Colors_of_Keukenhof

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Meet the New COLOURlovers Overlays Pack on Pixlr!

Meet the New COLOURlovers Overlays Pack on Pixlr!


They're here! Meet the latest design pack on Pixlr web and mobile apps - The COLOURlovers Expansion Pack!

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These design ideas were the result of our awesome, COLOURlovers + Pixlr #PixlrPop Contest held at the end of May. The result was eight (8) winning entries that went to inspiration for what is referred to as, Expansion Pack Overlays on Pixlr web, desktop and mobile apps. Overlay packs generally feature unique artwork set to varied styled effects similar to those in design programs (i.e. Photoshop). This means that some of the artwork is set to modes such as: Lighten, Multiply, Soft Light, Hard Light and so on. This changes their interaction with the artwork you use.

Here is a quick example how you can use the COLOURlovers Overlays Expansion Pack with a clean portrait to create a trendy double exposure artwork. I used this beautiful black and white portrait (via Pinterest search, "Portraits") for the example images.

I highly recommend fiddling around with a clean black and white portrait when designing double exposure and/or overlay types.

"Loulouflor" by Anonymuse

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"Pointed Response" by Wondercake

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"SPRING2013" by SUNNY21327

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"The Exchange" by praxicalidocious

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"Zebra" by addabarrios

"Underthedeepbluesea" by Kalindy

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"Orange Loves you px" by bhsav

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"Historic Arrest" by Huege

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As you can see these turned out pretty neat! Each style has a specific personality that really creates some terrific effects. Check it out for yourself!

PixlrCL_ExpressShot

  1. 1. Go to Pixlr Express
  2. 2. Load your own image, or go find an easy portrait to work with, the one I used is at this link. (hint: right click + "open image in a new tab" works great to not grab the page link, instead you just want the link to the image itself.
  3. 3. You'll see the little COLOURlovers icon and you can start editing!
  4. *Big Tip: Add an effect then erase sections with the History Brush, then go back and add more overlay effects....

Would you like a video tutorial? Let me know!

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Maasai Beading: Color & Symbolism [ infographic ]

Maasai Beading: Color & Symbolism [ infographic ]


The Maasai are one of the most well known Indigenous people of Africa. Their colorful attire and unique customs highlight their vibrant culture located in Southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania.

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Have you ever wondered as to the symbolism and social meanings behind their vibrantly beadwork?

"The beaded jewelry made by the Maasai women is a tradition from the Maasai tribe, located in Southern Kenya. The Maasai have been creating beaded jewelry for a very long time. It all started long before the first European contact had occurred. At the time, the tribe used natural resources to create their jewelry. Clay, wood, bone, copper and brass are just few of the materials that were used. When trade with Europeans started in the late 19th century, glass beads were suddenly available, and it is with those that the Maasai decided to continue their tradition of beaded jewels....The colors of the jewels are not only chosen because of the beautiful ensembles they make, but also for their symbolic values. Each color has a meaning that is often related to cattle. Cattle are the main food source of the Maasai and they sustain a deep connection with them. " - Discovered.us

I am really impressed that the Maasai Culture still exits in our world today. With their unwavering culturally-rich history, American culture pales in comparison with our ever-changing fashion trends and cultural whims. They definitely have a deeply rooted culture one can't help but be impressed by.

Check out the Maasai on COLOURlovers:

Maasai_BeadworkMaasaimaasai_variationMaasai_MorningWandering_MaasaiMaasaiMaasai_Mandalakenyamaasai_jewellerymaasai_maraMaasaiMaasaiMaasaiMaasaiMaasai_1Blue_MaasaiMaasaiMaasai_RedMaasai_SkyBlueMaasai_BlueMaasai_OrangeMaasai_Redmaasai_redmaasaiTribal_GlamKenya_Masai_MaraKenyas_YellowKenyaHot_In_KenyaKenyakenyaKenyaKenyaKenyaKenyaKenyas_DuskKenyaTrip_to_Kenyakenya

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Zentangle Series: Botanical Pattern Design Tips & Tricks

Zentangle Series: Botanical Pattern Design Tips & Tricks


The illustrative world of Botany is so intriguing. Aside from the scientific points, you can learn so much in color use, shape and form and line work. It gets you to pay attention to the fine details of design rather than just the overall idea of say, a flower.

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Today I've got a video that follows a botanical design from start to finish. In this video I showcase how you can utilize blending, shading, outlining and a few tricks altogether.

Here are my finished pattern template and primary shape used to make this video:

Flower_Blends_505Flower_Blend

Here are a number of shading and blending elements you can develop using multiple squeezed shapes mashed together and saved as a Custom Shape to re-use:

Shading_longShade_-_HatchingGrid_-_SpokesShading_Thick

Would you find it valuable for me to make an entire video on making shading and blending elements such as these? The more complex shape, Shade - Hatching (above), is a series  of squeezed dew-drop shape (found under the Sky Shapes category), then I used a stretched and modified crescent shape (same category) to round out the base.

You can create any number of shading and blending custom shapes. I find it useful to create ones with longer lines, shorter lines, longer in width, curved bases (curved bases help streamline elements for floral designs). Having them on hand really cuts down on time when you want to be artistic and not spend all your time making the shading pieces at the same time.

Get Inspiration from Anatomic Botanical Illustration

While you can peruse the shapes and patterns all over COLOURlovers.com, that's good for practice but copying work for practice will not allow you to create your own sense of style and imagination. Instead, after giving a little practice a go... knowing where to look for ideas is key.

Anatomic Illustration is really quite interesting because it generally pieces off organic matter such as flowers, plants, insects, etc. and definitively shows nice line and color work enough for you to turn those art pieces in to a Seamless Lite pattern design in your own reflection.

body_botanicalillustration

Source: Botany Diagram Artwork | Flower Artwork #2

Pinterest Boards to utilize as resources for inspirational imagery:

I would take some time to peruse through these links and just practice drawing and saving shapes and build up your library. Don't put pressure on yourself for making some fancy pattern, literally just spend an hour making 5+ types of vines and leaves. Then work on petals and flowers.... and so on. Once you do a ton of drawing practice, move in to putting some of those elements in to a pattern design. Remember, a good pattern does not have to have a thousand different elements. A good pattern consists of:

  • * Start with a main element of interest (or create vines and work on the seamless connections - this falls under the "stripes" type of patterns).
  • * Connect it with some type of line-work such as vines or decorated lines (add bubbles, triangles, etc along the line like dew-drops on a vine).
  • * Use the Diagonal Axis rather than limiting yourself to the Artboard "boxy" Square

Great Examples of Seamless Lite Botanical Shapes for Inspiration:

Lantern_FlowersPeacock_FlowerDont_Look_At_ThisHibiscusFLOWERMum_Testfolk_flowerFlowerFLOWERFlower_6Flower_429LotusFlower_With_StamensStrange_FlowerflowerMotif_flowerFlowerFlower_7Pod_FlowerMallowFan_BlendDot_Thing

 

See many more great flower designs! I basically set the search results on CL to "flower" under the dropdown, Shapes option.

 

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Come Digitally Zentangle Using Seamless Lite

Come Digitally Zentangle Using Seamless Lite


Zentangle has been trending for some years now and many people choose to "tangle" for meditation and relaxation, just as most COLOURlovers utilize the palette and pattern tools on the site as a way of relaxing and meditating.

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What I see a lot on COLOURlovers.com is that many people shy far away from using Seamless Lite after dabbling for a few, deeming it way too difficult to master. Mostly, and this is just my opinion, but well mostly because they compare themselves to the crazy-good pattern designs by veteran citizens of COLOURlovers.

•Renacer_Ahora•electric_zentangleZentangle_ScalesZentangle

Let me remind you... take a big breath and a big step back. Let's start over...

Here's the news people... yes, yes these kind-hearted artists are totally talented. But did it just happen that they opened up Seamless Lite and were Michelangelo in a day? No, of course not! So you'd be silly to think,"I'm Presto Perfect!" after 5-minutes or even 5-hours fiddling with Seamless Lite.

Seamless is actually pretty easy to use, once you learn the ropes (if you are new here and need an in-depth intro to Seamless, see a video here on our YouTube Channel). Drawing shapes and putting together repeat-patterns is totally an aspect of digital Zentangle without the complications of learning (or purchasing) design software such as Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop.

Seamless is simple and to the point, not to mention it comes with an entire supportive and artistic community you can share your work with.

body_Zentangle

Remember, Zentangle is a personal art form. It does not have to be perfect. While you can achieve a more precise line-work by using this digital method of Seamless Lite, Zentangle is traditionally a hand-drawn technique, so take that in to consideration before you go all OCD on connecting points, center points and alignment.

Let's get started with making a shape, something short and easy... then I will be going over using a grid to help you get a sense of space, alignment and design direction with your templates.... then we will continue to work on shapes and more.

Create a "Wishbomb" Shape:

Making and Using Custom Grids for Design Layout:

I find that making your own base layer grid and then saving it as a shape to re-use can greatly help line things up a bit more precise.

Note: After making the next two video's, I felt that making a video specifically for Grids would be a good idea. The next video semi-introduces making a grid as well.

Make a Grid to Create a Consistent Geometric Pattern (then delete the grid):

Re-Use the Grid in a Circle Zentangle Pattern:

I want to show you how to now reuse the grid shape you should have created if you'd followed the last video (above) and to develop a new pattern form with the grid as a guide.

Examples & Inspiration: Grid-Based Designs:

shadowed_scalesSoft_Art_Décostairway_to_Heavenpara_o_sub_do_msn

Now let's Create A Vine:

Never used Seamless Lite Before? Get up to speed!

Just a reminder, if you have no idea what I am doing in some of these area's of using Seamless Lite, you can watch the video introduction on this at your leisure HERE. This covers a complete anatomy of the web application itself and is a more in-depth tutorial with voice-over (not a high-speed musical).

Let's Tangle Next Week! We'll be covering Outlining, Shading and Adding Detail...

If you absolutely cannot wait until next week, I will be working on and uploading these video's over the weekend to our COLOURlovers YouTube Channel, join me there to get a jumpstart!

  • *Advanced Grids for More Technical Layouts
  • * Add Design Elements to Your Basic Grid Designs
  • *Make Simple Look Complex
  • *Outlining Tricks
  • *Shading Tricks 

 

Is there something you are wanting me to cover, but haven't seen it yet? Please comment to put in a request. I'm more than happy to accommodate.

 

**Copy + Paste the Badge below if you have a design you want to know how to make, be realistic. ;)


color_and_colorFor_ArielaAwesome_Blossom!Short_Vinesterrific_tangletangledTangled_upSTYLISH_BEADS..Nearly_TangledSinging_Joy

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