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Calming Art Therapy Colouring Book
Hannah Davies, Richard Merritt and Cindy Wilde

Michael O'Mara Books
8 October 2015 / ISBN 9781782434214
Non Fiction / Coloring / Craft

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


This is the third of the Michael O'Mara series of large format, hardcover coloring books (there is also a cheaper paperback option). As with the others there is a lot to love here, and for a number of reasons this is one of the best coloring books around right now. To start with if you purchase the hardcover version you won't have to find anything the right size to press on; these boards are a sturdy 1/10" front and back. The book opens fairly flat and it is not too difficult to press the pages down so nothing is lost in the spine. Images are printed back to back but the paper here is good quality, and if you are a felt pen user like me you won't run into problems here unless you use permanent markers (eg Sharpies) or press too hard. The paper has a smooth, satiny feel to it that is ideal for pens but lacks the tooth pencil users prefer. I tend to think of this as being more a pen book as like the others in the series the pictures have colored backgrounds which are all fairly bright. This is a great aid to choosing a color scheme and helps with the relaxation process, as you tend to spend more time coloring and less agonizing over color choices. If you like coloring animals this is a great book to get as there are a lot of animal images in here, from tropical birds and reef fish to less usual things like an eel, deer, jellyfish and llama. You can also find many other potentially colorful images such as matryoshkas, cityscapes, tepee and gypsy encampments, Day of the Dead, playing card, Art Deco lady, abstract patterns and more. The book is divided into two sections: the first, larger one entitled Colouring is filled with pictures to color in, the second is called Doodling and takes up the final quarter of the book. This has the same colored backgrounds but has outlines for you to fill in yourself and color. I personally love this but realize that it is not for everybody; however there are no marks awarded and nobody is watching so this wonderful book is the perfect opportunity to do as the subtitle says and "doodle and colour your stress away." Very highly recommended.

If you cannot find a good range of coloring materials locally try for a list of suppliers.

UK Reviewer: Rachel Hyde's work can be found in Sewing World, Sew Hip, Popular Crafts and other magazines. Her craft blog is Green Thoughts
Reviewed 2016