The artist in me is telling the artist in you, that even though you are no longer a kid, you can still color. I’m a huge advocate for finding any way to express your creativity and not letting fear hinder your potential; this can even be paired to coloring. Don’t let the fear that coloring is just for kids stop you.
At first, when the adult coloring books came out I thought they were pretty neat-o, but never bought one because I thought I didn’t have the time to just focus on coloring. If I’m being real, when I sit down and color it takes me a looong time cause I’m a perfectionist.
The work wants to be made, and it wants to be made through you – Elizabeth Gilbert
I’ve always had a love for art, drawing, and photography (hence the Architecture major in the beginning of college) but when I entered college I couldn’t find the time to pursue it as much. A couple weeks ago I grabbed one of the most beautifully simple coloring books and just scored, shaded, outlined, and saturated the shiz out of that paper. Took me about an hour just to color one page. It may have taken me a long time but I was in a different state than normal. I was focused, yet relieved. I was present and technology was absent. I was in a sense structured, yet in a state of freedom.
Kendra Castillo, a culturally creative artist & interior designer, produced a 6 page printable coloring book (pictured below) that I couldn’t get enough of. While I was filling in these floral scenes, I remembered why coloring is so darn good for ya:
- It’s a form of personal expression: Light and cooler tones are friendly, warm, and open. More use of dark shades express an authoritative and powerful mood. Bright hues can show your playful side. Pastel colors are more calm and soothing.
- The good ol’ nostalgia: This could bring you back to the time when you were a kid: light hearted and optimistic. There’s nothing wrong with a blast from the past!
- Maintains dexterity: Clearly, coloring is a hands-on kinda activity. You’re keeping focus on hand strength/ grip and staying inside the lines (we don’t always have to “color outside the box”).
- You activate the right hemisphere of the brain: Yes, the right hemisphere of the brain controls the left side of the body but it is also aids in releasing your creative and artistic abilities. You should give the left hemisphere of your brain, cool down on the analytical gears turning in your mind and let the flow begin.
- Calms down your nervous system: Coloring helps reduce stress and anxiety as it relaxes your amygdala. The amygdala is the center of for your emotions and regulates our fight or flight response.
- You activate the left hemisphere of your brain: It’s not all about being “right.” Yes, you’re engaging the right hemisphere through your artistic abilities, but concentrating on color balance and design you are activating your problem-solving skills in the left hemisphere of your brain! Smarts isn’t all numbers, being creative can improve your problem-solving skills as well.
Check out Kendra Castillo’s 6 page coloring book, featured above, HERE!!!
Kendra is an artist in the Pacific Northwest, she loves a good cup of coffee, yoga pants and getting to know other people’s life stories. Her life motto is “finding beauty in everyday moments.” She believes that there is beauty and joy to be found in every situation, and her hope is that her artwork brings joy to everyone who sees it.
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