Over the past few years, a surprise obsession has taken over the living and dining rooms of respectable, mature adults. Capable, strong people who have advanced past the art of cursive handwriting and multiplication tables. Fully-functioning humans, blessed with age and wisdom, are now turning to a childhood hobby for zen.
Adult coloring books have become quite the rage with people of all ages, not just three-year-olds with Jell-O pudding encased between their fingernails. In a recent article from Reuters, reports indicate that more than 2,000 coloring books were published in 2015, up from 300 in 2014. And that number is certainly on the rise, as pop culture giants have joined the coloring fray.
Not to seem like a bandwagon fan, I waited a bit to survey the crayon craze as I watched my own mother dive into a crisp, sharp new colored pencil set. She had been given some as a retirement gift, and I thought it to be a charming hobby. Pretty soon, my best friend’s coffee table was ablaze in color, rife with Disney princess coloring books and shades of pink (Blue! Pink! Blue! Pink!) Why the sudden craze? What was so entertaining about resuming a childhood hobby?
After a few more friends mentioned they, too, had joined the coloring queue, I began to research the fad (and by research, I mean I queried Amazon for their stock on “adult coloring books”). And you know what? You can have your pick of over 25,000 different choices on their website! A lucky few even come with their own pencil set, so read on to explore the most intriguing books I found (and purchased).
1.A Game of Thrones Coloring Book
All men must draw…or color, in this case. You’ve heard of the Red Wedding, but now you can decide if you want to favor more of a maroon ceremony or a brick red scene. You can design all of the house sigils or give Cersei a technicolored coat of many colors. Full disclosure: these designs are based off George R.R. Martin’s books, not the TV show.
2. Harry Potter Coloring Book
This was an absolute purchase for me. I didn’t even have to think about it. What’s that, you say? I get to be a kid for a little while longer? I’m in, hook, line and sinker. Plus: there are currently 4 different books you can pick from: the original book, Magical Places & Characters (which I own), Magical Artifacts, and Magical Creatures.
There’s also an awesome Coloring Kit, which includes 30 illustrated cards with detailed designs of your favorite characters to complete, 10 colored pencils, and 2 distinct magnetic frames to display your art. Scholastic, take my money now.
3. Art of Coloring Star Wars: 100 Images to Inspire Creativity & Relaxation
Guys….this is labelled as “art therapy.” We owe it to ourselves to invest in this product simply to maintain strong mental health. This was my first purchase, and the book is gorgeous. It’s about as heavy as the Star Wars Saga on Blu-Ray, with a hardcover sturdy enough to survive an attack from the Starkiller Base. You get characters and locations from Episodes 1-6, but enough talking…more coloring, say I.
4. Color Your Own Deadpool
All you need to know is that there is a Parental Advisory on the first page due to graphic content (one reviewer said it was due to “scantily clad women,” so if you prefer “sweatpants clad women,” this book may not be for you. The book features Deadpool in all of his irreverent glory, plus Thanos, Carnage, zombies, Cable, and Spider-Man.
5.Calm the F*@k Down: An Irreverent Adult Coloring Book
The first page (totally colorable) reads: “Something to do until the valium kicks in.” This is the book we all need, especially for Mondays. Other pages include sayings like “Home is where the vodka is,” and “Dance like no one attractive is watching.” If spirit animals could come in books, this would be mine.
6. Doctor Who Coloring Book
You get 96 pages of wobbly wobbly, color-y wolor-y stuff, including lanets, galaxies, villains, heroes, the Doctor, the TARDIS and the time vortex. You also get a wealth of quotes from the TV show, so really, what are you waiting for?
Just so you all know: my birthday is in 16 days. How did this escape my research? Not only do you get to color iconic scenes and characters from the show, you can find vital clues from each episode within the original black and white illustrations. You can contemplate the clues when and only when you have finished coloring. The pencil sharpener’s afoot!