I had a real DUH moment. Seriously. I’ve been drawing and coloring fire wrong for ages!

I feel a little better that it’s not just me. It’s artists all over the web, in all genres. Just look up how to draw fire and you’ll see. Pinterest is covered with them! Which, of course, means that IF you continue to color fire backwards, you aren’t WRONG, really. I mean, if the dictionary can add new words as they become in common use, we can do that with art, I guess? Let’s get to it so I can get all this off my chest!


Watch the video below or click here to see it on YouTube.

In looking at photos of single candle flames, it’s clear that it’s really hard to make a candle flame look “right” when it’s on a white paper with no background. In general, life doesn’t present us with any PURE white surroundings; so a white piece of paper is asking for trouble if there’s no scene around the candle so it’ll show up white. In instances like that – certainly keep that yellow flame burning just fine! But if you have a background, especially a dark one – add some red/orange/yellow at the edge to make the center white hot highlight to stay looking bright!

Cartoon campfires pose a bit of a problem in making fire look realistic: black lines in the interior of the fire. You can certainly color the outside edges with the red/orange/yellow and let it get white in the center (optional tiny blue spot)…. but if you stamp it in a light ink, the interior white lines are more easily covered with a white pen – so the color transition comes out looking more natural. Add that black backround, with some diffused red around the flames and bounced color onto the ground? Now we’re talking.

Just for kicks – here is also a drawn-from-scratch campfire with logs stacked in a tent shape. Same color pressions around the outside, but the complex shapes make it all dance around.

New class!

As promised – it’s been 2 weeks since the previous class was released so we get another today! And it’s camping of course. Lots of fun for summer – and maybe you’ll take some photos that you know can work with some of these techniques after your camping trip! Go get registered now!

Fundraiser printable

I made a little marshmallow printable that’s super easy to color; and all proceeds will be donated to Royal Family Kids Camp! It’s a charity that I worked with years ago, they take abused and neglected kids to camp for a week to show them what life looks like when it’s full of love.

More inspiration for summer

Need some more summer ideas? I’ve gathered a ton right here! Or pick from below to search out specific media, themes, brands, and more.



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