Guest post by Bonnie K.T. Dillabough
When I was young, I lived with my grandparents. My grandmother was a very creative and artistic lady. One of my fondest memories of her were when she brought out the coloring pencils and her artist’s coloring books. When we colored with her it wasn’t a coloring free-for-all. Every time we sat down at the kitchen table, with the sun streaming in through the garden window, we would start with a short art lesson.
The lesson was always interesting and demonstrated different ways of using the colored pencils to bring our drawings to life. It wasn’t about just staying inside the lines. It was about a way of looking at colors, light and shadow and applying our observations to our projects. We learned to create new colors and shades. We learned how to shade and blend and create the look of texture in our drawings.
I am no artist, nor do I think will I ever become one, but I know enough to appreciate good art when I see it and even more important to take pleasure in creating beautiful things and recognizing you can do a lot with a little.
Probably one of the things I remember most clearly is the peace I felt as we would sit there, coloring, chatting and just being together. I can picture the scene so clearly and the sounds and smells and warmth of the experience come back to me as it was just yesterday.
Now, when I color, my mind harks back and I find myself smiling for no particular reason except the sheer enjoyment of the coloring experience. This is why I enjoy sharing the adult coloring book experience with my friends and family and why I sponsored a local coloring book at our community center and why I don’t think anyone is ever too old to enjoy sitting down with a good coloring book, some coloring pencils or markers or gel pens and just hanging out.
It is no wonder that so many psychologists and behavioral therapist are beginning to add coloring to there range of therapeutic tools. Coloring therapy is used to treat PTSD and other anxiety and stress disorders and even alzheimer’s patients. I don’t know if my grandmother understood that, but I do know how calming and somehow comforting it is to color.
If you haven’t tried it, you should consider finding a nice coloring book (they come in all styles and there are so many to choose from) and get yourself some pencils or markers and just sit down and color. I find it is even more fun to do in a group, either with your kids or with other adults in a local coloring book group. (Hint: most libraries have coloring groups these days or look for one on Meetup.com.)
Bonnie K.T. Dillabough is the author of the coloring book series, “Peaceful Patterns Coloring Therapy” with her the first book in the series just out on Amazon.com “Joy is in the Journey” You can contact her at: .)