Hi everyone. I told my friend who suffers from severe depression & is on several medications about the adult coloring books I wrote about earlier. No joke here. Some of authors of these books are licensed therapists who practice art therapy with folks in hospitals, mental health facilities, senior homes & rehabs. I saw a National Geographic article in Feb 2015, “The Invisible War on the Brain,” on how war veterans are using art to express their PTSD. A vet said, “I thought this was a joke.” “Well, I was ignorant and I was wrong because it’s great.” If art therapy is helping our vets, I am sure they will help on us with depression, illnesses & chronic pain. That include people with cancer, Parkinson's, Fibromyalgia & Lupus. Tests have shown that art releases dopamine in the brain which boosts a person’s feeling of well-being. This helps reduce your anxiety, stress, depression & help manage chronic pain. Hey, I’m in for that.
You don’t have to be an artist. These coloring books have wonderful sketches with some detail. All you have to do is relax and put color pencil to paper. They are not kid books. Now for the books, I found that Dover Publications has a great selection of book themes that could spark an interest in anyone—male & female. Age does not matter. You can be a teen, a middle aged adult looking for a little creative quiet time & to help deal with stress or a senior who is still aspiring to be an artist. I know most of you are across the big pond but I'm sure you can get your hands on them through Amazon as well. You can download & print some pages from Pinterest, Google...
There are many coloring books with wonderful themes: dogs, cats, owls, forest animals, butterflies, nature scenes, country scenes, flowers, coral reefs, wizards & dragons, fairies, angels, sharks, sea monsters, tropical scenes, arctic life, African plains, wild cats, horses, vampires & zombies, unicorns, mythical beasts, castles, pirates, swampland and many others. Come on guys, even you can find something here. It’s best to have them snail mail the catalog to your home because it’s easier than the website. They have coloring books of folk art including Native American, African, Mexican, Arabic, Aztec, Celtic, Chinese, Japanese art and more. They have books from the Renaissances & the Impressionist. Yes, there is a Van Gogh, Cezanne & a Monet book. They have geometric designs, abstracts, snowflakes, mosaics, mandalas, dream catchers, kaleidoscopes, tiffany designs, surreal, fashion designs. You name it they got it.
The school supplies are now out in the big stores. Every year, I stock up on boxes of Crayola coloring pencils, Crayola watercolor pencils & metallic colored pencils. Don’t get the cheap pencils. The color does not go on as well & as smoothly. If you are interested in what the real coloring of an owl is get a kids library book on owls. Even artist use photos. If you have some art background, try working on different color schemes. There are so many or you can go monochromatic.
I know that in the dark abyss is a very difficult place to be. My sleeping bag is still down there. In addition to getting plenty of water, some air, food & sleep, it helps to find something that will take your mind off the dark feelings even for a moment. Pick something that interests you. Work on a pic for 30mins or all evening. Put on some mellow music. YouTube has a lot of good playlists. I like the 70s, 80s, disco & classic rock. I love Keiko Matsui. She is awesome! You will feel much better as you work on your pic. You will start to look forward to your time with your pic & pencils—hey that’s a cool title. Ok, this is Pic & Pencil Therapy! There isn’t much on TV. I don’t care for the violence. I’ve had enough of that in my life. I would rather work on a pic. Just make sure you don’t stay up too late. Sometimes you don't want to stop because you're in a zone. There are times I looked at the clock and it was 0300 hrs. Remember a lack of sleep can make things worse. You can color with a friend or a group. Have some munchies. Relax. When you are feeling your worst, just go through the motions. I know you feel empty. It may seem too much of an effort but once you get started you will feel much better. If you have Arthritis in your hands, try the markers or color pens. Don't worry if you shake. Just relax & enjoy. I have other suggestions for you in the next posting. Take care all.