Adult life can be challenging; there are many responsibilities and pressures that come with being an adult and oftentimes we just need to take a breather and pause to relax. One method that has become increasingly popular over the years is Art Therapy, specifically, coloring books. These coloring books are designed to have almost a therapeutic effect by having intricate and detailed patterns which can help one to unwind and focus. Often, these patterns will include complex sceneries, landscapes, abstract shapes, and mandalas.
Focusing on the last one, Mandalas are often used as tools for meditation, as the intricate patterns and designs can be used to focus the mind and promote relaxation.
Today, we will go through a journey of relaxation and how you can achieve tranquility through Mandalas using simple tools from Procreate.
When the digital wave hit the market, so did digital coloring books. Today, in Procreate, you can easily create a mandala by using the geometric shapes and symmetry tools in the app. This, too, can be a meditative step just as much as coloring one in is. The act of carefully designing and detailing your mandala can be a ground zero for relaxation.
Making a Mandala
What makes Mandalas so relaxing to look at, is their symmetry and balance. This is why the best tool to use in creating them in Procreate is the Symmetry tool. This tool has 4 guides, but in order to make things much easier and faster for us, we recommend using either Quadrant Symmetry or Radial Symmetry. In a previous blog, we talked about all of Procreate’s Symmetry Tools in depth so make sure to check that out.
It's best to begin your Procreate Mandala with a straightforward circle if you're just getting started or are unsure of what pattern to use. As a pro tip, select your circle layer, tap on Transform, and enable snapping to make sure it’s perfectly placed in the center of your canvas.
Afterward, activate the symmetry tool and select either the quadrant or radial symmetry options. This will automatically be placed at the center of your canvas but if you’re working slightly off-center, align this to the center of your circle for perfect symmetry. You can do this easily with the previous pro tip of selecting your circle layer, tapping on Transform, and enabling Snapping.
Use various drawing tools to create your patterns. You can use basically any brush you’d like but we recommend starting with just a simple round brush and exploring from there once you feel more comfortable. Here’s a freebie Copic Brushes for Procreate for you to start with!
These are only the tip of the iceberg compared to all the techniques you can use to make your designs! For a more in-depth tutorial and lessons about these tools, consider Procreate Masterclass! With over 80 lessons, you will be learning the ins and outs of Procreate and everything you’ll need to make Mandalas, and more!
Coloring a Mandala
Once you’ve finished creating your Procreate mandala, it’s time to give it some color!
The key to coloring a mandala is to use a slow and mindful approach and to pay attention to the details and patterns in the design.
1. Select the colors you want to use for your mandala first. A more varied color scheme will add variety and interest to your mandala, while a smaller color scheme will produce a more unified and harmonious appearance.
2. From the center, start coloring the mandala outward. As you work, this will assist you in maintaining the design's harmony and symmetry.
3. To add texture and depth to your mandala, experiment with different coloring methods and tools. For instance, you can use cross-hatching and stippling to add texture to the design or shading and blending to produce a gradient effect.
4. Color your mandala slowly and with awareness. Allowing yourself to enjoy the process and let your imagination run free can help you to relax and unwind in this process!
With that, you have the tools to make and color your own Mandalas!