Adult Coloring taking the world by storm.

Adult Coloring.

Adult Colouring

Is it a fad or is it here to stay ?

It does this old artist’s heart proud to see what’s currently happening with the Adult Coloring trend that is taking the world by storm.  Anything that encourages anyone of any age to engage in art brings a smile to my face.

Hands up if coloring was one of the first creative things you did as a kid !  I know it was for me and for it to now be cool to color beyond the age of 10 brings me so much joy.  Why ? Because we all need to switch off from time to time. I know that when I break out the paintbrushes or pencils to start work on a sketch or watercolor, once the paint hits the paper I will be transported to another place, I’ll be lost for hours in the creative process and will not give another thought to the stresses and strains of the “real world”.

I think that is the attraction of coloring. Once you bust out the pencils and start carefully filling in the black and white outlines in the picture that is begging to be brought to life, something switches in your brain and you get transported to a blissful state of artistic isolation.  I always find that whether it’s a painting, creating a coloring page or coloring, once I start, the rest of the world ceases to exist. The countless cups of tea and coffee that have gone cold before I could finish them are testament to the absorbing nature of this rewarding pastime.

Some say that the Adult Coloring trend was borne out of the Art Therapy movement, while the Art Therapy practitioners will claim that it’s much more complicated than that. Whichever is true, it makes you wonder at what point in transitioning from a child to an adult you ceased to give yourself permission to just play. Taking time out for yourself to just switch off and create a piece of art, just for you, the way you like it must surely do you more good than anything the pharmaceutical industry would be all too quick to prescribe.

Even if you don’t feel you have a creative bone in your body, once you take out some colored pencils and a fresh coloring page, you can create your own unique artwork, using the colors you like, at your own pace. It really is the best way to zone out – the ultimate “Me Time”

Now being a keen artist, I’d love to see people progress to eventually creating their own pictures to color and even mix it up with some sketching and maybe even progress to my passion which is watercolor painting.  Now that may be a fair way down the track, but a journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step.

If you take up adult coloring, you won’t be on your own. There are literally millions of people around the world who have given themselves permission to play – and why not.  As I write this, almost 10% of the Amazon top 100 best selling books are Adult Coloring Books. Thats all of Amazon, which is amazing.

Once of my favourite illustrators is Johanna Basford  Born and raised in Scotland Johanna does some beautiful work starting with pencil sketches and finishing off with fine ink, which results in exquisite illustrations just perfect for coloring.  It’s no suprise to me that Johanna has three books currently in the Amazon Top 100 and more amazing is that one of them is yet to be released.

I’m currently putting the finishing touches to my first fully hand drawn original coloring book which we hope to release soon. In the interim, here are some of the most popular adult coloring books available now.

Johanna Basford Titles

(I like these because they are from a real artist, not a publisher cobbling together stock images from the internet)

Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Coloring Book

Enchanted Forest: An Inky Quest & Coloring Book

Lost Ocean: An Inky Adventure and Coloring Book     (This hit top 100 before being released !)

The Creative Haven Coloring books are also very popular – another real artist Marjorie Sarnat. The style of these books is slightly less refined and more naive than Johanna’s work, but color well.

Creative Haven Creative Cats Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)

Creative Haven Owls Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)

The next book from Angie Grace features original Mandalas (circular intricate patterns in a style that originated from India). These are intricate patterns suited to adults and older children – You can find 4 volumes of Mandalas for free on our Download page to try this style of coloring out.  They can be quite stunning.

Balance (Angie’s Extreme Stress Menders Volume 1)


And finally, the following titles from blue star coloring also feature in amazons top 100 and while these are produced by a publisher instead of an individual artist, I’ve listed them as they are very popular.

I would always suggest supporting individual artists where possible as they put their heart and soul into creating original unique artwork for you to color and enjoy.

Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns

Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Animal Designs

Adult Coloring recap :

So there’s not much more to say :

  • It’s fun
  • It’s relaxing
  • Take some time out for You
  • Millions of smart, relaxed, de-stressed adults are doing it

So grab some colored pencils, grab a coloring book and lose yourself in this most relaxing and rewarding activity and most of all embrace art and give yourself permission to play.


Writen by Alan

Born in Somerset England in the 60's artist and illustrator Alan now calls rural Tasmania home.

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