Patterns

UK Giveaway and Review – Colour Serene: Adult Art Therapy Colouring to Calm and Relax

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Colour Serene is illustrated and self-published by Faunia Smith who kindly sent me a copy to review and a copy to give away (UK giveaway instructions at the bottom, directly above the photos). Faunia is a Naturopath from Australia who strongly recommends art therapy for relaxation and to reduce stress and it was just this that she created her book Colour Serene for. This book is A4, landscape and paperback with flexible card covers with a partially coloured image from inside the book. The spine is glue-bound and all of the illustrations are bordered and don’t reach the page edges. The pages are all printed single-sided and the book contains 24 images, 13 are landscape, 11 are portrait and all are perforated so that you can remove them from the book if you wish to display or gift them. The paper is bright white, thick, and lightly textured, the paper isn’t card-like but it is thick and didn’t bleed or shadow with my water-based pens; pencils blend and shade well and alcohol markers will be fine to use as long as you pop a protective sheet behind your work as the pages are single-sided. The illustrations themselves are very varied, from landscapes to abstract, patterned to nature and more. Some of the images show scenes, others are more random and none are particularly similar to each other. You can find photos from inside below the review.

In terms of mental health, this book is lovely, it contains such variety that you’re sure to find something to suit any mood, any symptom level and any difficulty you fancy. The line thickness is varied from medium to spindly thin and the intricacy and detail levels vary hugely from large open spaces to teeny tiny ones, generally these variances are between pictures rather than within them so there is a good range of difficulties for different levels of concentration or symptoms. Many of the images will be fine for those with moderate levels of vision or fine motor control with a few most suited to those with good or very good levels. The range of images will be ideal to cover those with fluctuating conditions who like to colour variety of content as well as a range of difficulty levels, there are illustrations suited to days where you can’t focus well and might want to block colour and others where you’ll need to be having a good day so that you can really focus on colouring within all of the teeny tiny sections of an abstract page, or others where you can really keep your hands and mind busy with meticulous blending and shading. The hand-drawn images have a calm feel to them and aren’t perfect so they don’t feel intimidating to start, some of the more realistic scenes have ready-made colour schemes that would suit them so you can colour trees in green in brown and the sun in yellow if you’re feeling anxious and unable to make decisions, on better days you can craft your own colour scheme for some of the abstract pages where you can really go all out with your choices.

I would recommend this book for those who like variety and those who like to use alcohol markers as the single-sided perforated pages are ideal for this medium. The illustrations are wide-ranging in content and feel calm and not so perfect that they’re intimidating to colour.

If you’d like to purchase a copy, it’s available here.

The image below was coloured using Stabilo 68 Fibre-Tip Pens.

UK Giveaway – Faunia very kindly sent me a second copy of her book in order to run a competition so you can win a free copy. This giveaway will run Wednesday the 29th of March at 8pm GMT. Please enter via this Facebook post, full instructions can be found there. Good luck!

UK Giveaway and Review – Doodle Artist: Dogs

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Doodle Artist: Dogs is a lovely book illustrated and kindly sent to me by Annette Rand. Annette has very kindly sent me two extra copies of this book and her other new title Doodle Artist: Guinea Pigs so that I can run a giveaway. This is being run on the pinned post on my Facebook page and is open to UK residents only due to postage costs, it ends at 8pm on Monday 28th of November. Good luck!

This book is filled with 2 copies of 20 full-page images of dogs and they’re fab! Annette used images of real dogs to create the outlines so that they’re realistic and then she filled them all with her signature patterns so if you’ve loved her previous books, you’ll love this one too! This paperback book is A4 size, with a portrait cover and a mixture of portrait and landscape images. The book is glue-bound so it’s a little difficult to get it to lie flat but the images are printed single-sided with a large border around them so none of the image is lost into the spine. The paper is standard Createspace paper which gets a pretty bad rep but you can’t see half the proceeding images through it, the paper is bright white and thick enough that my water-based fineliners didn’t bleed at all (they did shadow) or chew up the paper in any way so it was a joy to colour and would be perfect for pens or pencils and you could even use your sharpies or alcohol pens with a protective sheet behind so that the next image doesn’t get spoiled. Each of the 20 images portrays a different dog breed with 2 copies of each so you could colour copies to match your current, or past, pets. The dogs included are: Toy Poodle, Jack Russell Terrier, German Shepherd, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Basset Hound, Cavavlier King Charles Spaniels, Bulldog, Dachsund, Whippet, Pug, Beagle, Saluki and Golden Retriever, Chihuahua, Border Collie, Shih-Tzu, Dogue de Bordeaux, English Cocker Spaniel, Rough Collie, Weimeramer, and Cairn Terrier. Annette’s clever use of realistic outlines and stylised patterns makes these dogs easily identifiable and the patterns really add to the texture of the pictures and often looks like fur, they’re really lovely! If you’re not sure what breed each one is there’s a helpful key at the front of the book with a named list of the images so you can check. 3 of the images in this book have a black background which is a nice touch and will really make your colours pop, one is even drawn in a stained glass window style which could look incredible when finished!

In terms of mental health, this book is lovely. It’s really calming and has various different levels of intricacy to suit your good and bad days. The line thickness is the same throughout and I would describe it as thin but not very thin (approximately fineliner thickness). The lines are crisp and accurate with no fuzziness, blurring or not quite joining up so this is a really professional looking book. I really enjoyed colouring this book ready for review and it was a great design to use my glitter gel pens on. The dogs are beautifully drawn – some are swirly, some are patterned, some are furry and others are contoured. This really is a fabulous book for animal lovers and those who love dogs, it would also be an amazing book for vets! The majority of the images aren’t drawn to be exactly like real-life dogs, they have realistic outlines but they’re covered in patterns which means that you can use any colour scheme you like, as you’ll see from my glittery rainbow Jack Russell Terrier below!

I found this book really calming and relaxing. As with all nature themed books, I find them the most relaxing and the best at reducing my anxiety levels and this book was no exception. The pictures are beautiful, there are no filler images and each has definitely earnt its right to be there and you could even cut them out once you’re done and frame them. The variation in levels of detail and intricacy means that as long as you have fairly good vision, you’ll be able to enjoy this book on your good and bad days and those of you with moderate to good fine motor control will definitely get a huge amount out of this book. The image below was coloured using UK supermarket own-brand glitter gel pens.

If you’d like to get a copy of this book then it’s available here:
Amazon UK – Doodle Artist: Dogs
Book Depository Worldwide – http://www.bookdepository.com/Doodle-Artist-Dogs-Annette-Rand/9781530798179/?a_aid=colouringitmom

If you’d like to read my reviews of Annette’s other titles then click below:
Doodle Artist Butterflies
Doodle Artist Fanciful Rats
Doodle Artist Guinea Pigs
Doodle Artist Peaceful Patterns
Doodle Artist Pets
Doodle Artist Rabbits and Hares
Doodle Artist Simply Snowflakes

UK Giveaway and Review – Doodle Artist: Guinea Pigs

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Doodle Artist: Guinea Pigs is a lovely book illustrated and kindly sent to me by Annette Rand. Annette has very kindly sent me two extra copies of this book and her other new title Doodle Artist: Dogs so that I can run a giveaway. This is being run on the pinned post on my Facebook page and is open to UK residents only due to postage costs, it ends at 8pm on Monday 28th of November. Good luck!

This book is filled with 2 copies of 20 full-page images of guinea pigs and they’re super cute! Annette used images of real guinea pigs to create the outlines so that they’re realistic and then she filled them all with her signature patterns so if you’ve loved her previous books, you’ll love this one too! This paperback book is A4 size, with a portrait cover and a mixture of portrait and landscape images. The book is glue-bound so it’s a little difficult to get it to lie flat but the images are printed single-sided with a large border around them so none of the image is lost into the spine. The paper is standard Createspace paper which gets a pretty bad rep but you can’t see half the proceeding images through it, the paper is bright white and thick enough that my water-based fineliners didn’t bleed at all (they did shadow) or chew up the paper in any way so it was a joy to colour and would be perfect for pens or pencils and you could even use your sharpies or alcohol pens with a protective sheet behind so that the next image doesn’t get spoiled. Each of the 20 images portrays a single guinea pig, pair or even a group, with 2 copies of each so you could colour copies to match your current, or past, pets. Annette’s clever use of realistic outlines and stylised patterns makes these guinea pigs look really cute and the patterns really add to the texture of the pictures and often looks like fur, they’re really lovely! There’s a real variety of image content from a guinea pig dressed up in steampunk clothing to various portrait style images, a guinea pig hiding in flowers, some dressed up in floral garlands and even wings, and there’s even a guinea pig mandala! Who’d have thought you could get so much content variety from 20 images of the same small furry animal?!

In terms of mental health, this book is lovely. It’s really calming and has various different levels of intricacy to suit your good and bad days. The line thickness is the same throughout and I would describe it as thin but not very thin (approximately fineliner thickness). The lines are crisp and accurate with no fuzziness, blurring or not quite joining up so this is a really professional looking book. I really enjoyed colouring this book ready for review and it was a great design to use my glitter gel pens on. The guinea pigs are beautifully drawn – some are swirly, some are patterned, some are furry and others are flowery. This really is a fabulous book for animal lovers and those who love guinea pigs, it would also be an amazing book for vets! The majority of the images aren’t drawn to be exactly like real-life guinea pigs, they have realistic outlines but they’re covered in patterns or dressed up in costumes or with props which means that you can use any colour scheme you like, as you’ll see from my glittery rainbow guinea pigs below!

I found this book really calming and relaxing. As with all nature themed books, I find them the most relaxing and the best at reducing my anxiety levels and this book was no exception. The pictures are beautiful, there are no filler images and each has definitely earnt its right to be there and you could even cut them out once you’re done and frame them. The variation in levels of detail and intricacy means that as long as you have fairly good vision, you’ll be able to enjoy this book on your good and bad days and those of you with moderate to good fine motor control will definitely get a huge amount out of this book. The image below was coloured using UK supermarket own-brand glitter gel pens.

If you’d like to get a copy of this book then it’s available here:
Amazon UK – Doodle Artist: Guinea Pigs
Book Depository Worldwide – http://www.bookdepository.com/Doodle-Artist-Guinea-Pigs-Annette-Rand/9781539162339/?a_aid=colouringitmom

If you’d like to read my reviews of Annette’s other titles then click below:
Doodle Artist Butterflies
Doodle Artist Dogs
Doodle Artist Fanciful Rats
Doodle Artist Peaceful Patterns
Doodle Artist Pets
Doodle Artist Rabbits and Hares
Doodle Artist Simply Snowflakes

Creative Colouring Techniques – A Review

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Creative Colouring Techniques is published and kindly sent to me to review by Michael O’Mara Books. This book is a wonderful compilation of hugely varied colouring pages, arranged into collections to practice the different colouring techniques which are described and illustrated within. This book is A4, paperback with brightly coloured and patterned flexible card covers. The spine is glue and string bound so it’ll be pretty hard-wearing but it does make it quite tricky to get the book to lie flat until it’s eased up with use. The images are printed double-sided and each has a 1cm border all the way around which prevents any of the image being lost into the spine. The paper is bright white and smooth but I’ve tested my pencils on it and they went down well and I was able to build up plenty of layers for blending and shading. The paper is thick and didn’t bleed through at all with water-based pens and only shadowed when I pressed too hard. The book contains 128 pages, which includes 100 colouring pages split into 20 chapters of 5 images which each start with a colouring or doodling technique which can then be practiced on the subsequent pages. This book contains heaps of techniques, suggestions and bits of advice about colour theory, different types of patterns and different filling techniques. Obviously I can’t give too much away or it’ll ruin the book for you but I have shown some of the technique pages in the photographs of the book so that you can see examples. I’ve also shown the contents page so that you can see the full list of techniques that are included. The images are so varied that it’s difficult to describe them briefly but there are images of everything you can imagine from buildings to fruit, weather to patterns, flowers to skulls and loads and loads of animals and birds. There really is something for everyone and you certainly won’t get bored or find any of the images samey.

In terms of mental health, this book is truly fantastic because it’s like an instruction manual for colouring. A lot of people with mental health problems get stuck sometimes and lack inspiration, especially those who are new to colouring because it can be daunting to know where and how to start. This book solves that problem completely and you could easily work through it from cover to cover because it’s somewhat arranged into difficulty level so you can increase your techniques as you work through the book. The images in each section do mostly lend themselves well to that specific technique and have clearly been chosen for this purpose, however, as you work through the book you could easily mix and match techniques and even add your own ideas as you grow in confidence. The line thickness varies throughout from spindly thin all the way up to medium/thick; the majority of the lines are medium/thin so this is a very usable book for anyone who doesn’t have poor vision or fine motor control. The intricacy and details levels also vary throughout from huge open spaces to teeny tiny details so this book will adapt really well to your good and bad days and you can focus on the larger images when your concentration is poor and the more intricate images when you’re feeling well. The techniques range from helping you to choose colours in various different ways, to using dots, dashes, patterns and more to fill the spaces instead of block colouring and even gives you hints for simple doodling too and as someone who really can’t draw, none of this was impossible for me to achieve so this is an ideal book for those of you who want to spice up your colouring but sometimes feel unable to due to lack of inspiration or lack of drawing talent.

I would highly recommend this book to beginner colourers as a great place to start and to those of you who want to learn new colouring and doodling techniques, this book is filled with all sorts of hints, tips and tricks and it’s beautifully organised so that you can learn a technique and then practice it on specially chosen colouring pages. I love it and think it’s one that you definitely need to add to your collection!

If you’d like to purchase a copy it’s available here:
Amazon UK – Creative Colouring Techniques
Book Depository Worldwide – http://www.bookdepository.com/Creative-Colouring-Techniques/9781782435532/?a_aid=colouringitmom

The image below was doodled using Stabilo Point 88 Fineliners and Stabilo 68 Fibre-tip pens.

The Second One and Only Colouring Book For Travelling Adults – A Review

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
The Second One and Only Colouring Book for Travelling Adults was published and kindly sent to me to review by Phoenix Yard Books. It is the sequel to The One and Only Colouring Book for Travelling Adults which I have previously reviewed. This book is the same format and it paperback with card covers, and comes in a cardboard sheath which admittedly isn’t the strongest and will probably get pretty battered if shoved in and out of a bag but it’ll certainly serve the purpose of protecting the book from receiving the same injuries. This book is smaller than most at approximately A5 size, making it the perfect size to fit in your handbag for your commute or a suitcase or rucksack for travelling further afield. The book is spiral-bound meaning none of the images are lost into the spine and you don’t have to colour with the book lying open, you can fold it in half so it takes up less space – particularly useful if you’ll be colouring on the move on a train or plane with limited space. The paper quality is fantastic! It’s bright white, lightly textured and so thick that I’d be tempted to describe it as card and there was absolutely no bleeding or shadows with any of my water-based pens. The images are printed double-sided but as long as you’re careful there is no worry about ruining any of them with your water-based pens, alcohol markers will definitely bleed through so I’d avoid those! The book contains 60 single page images of both abstract and more realistic designs and the sheer amount of variety within them is astounding from swirling patterns to abstract creations, pictures of food, objects and flowers, to patterned cats and woolly jumpers, this is a great book for those who love variety!

In terms of mental health, this book is truly fantastic! The images are really varied so you won’t get bored and no matter what mood you’re in you’ll be able to find a page that calls to you and just asks to have colour added. The images are drawn with varying line thicknesses to adapt to your better and worse days of vision and concentration. The pictures vary in intricacy and detail and will keep you occupied for hours as you colour in each detailed section. I would strongly recommend investing in a good set of fineliners (I recommend Stabilo Point 88), so that you can really get the details without the frustration of accidently going over the lines. You will need fairly good vision and fine motor control in order to get the most out of this book but if you have those then this book is ideal for anoyone who want to colour on the move!

I found this book very calming and soothing. The intricacy of the designs meant I had to focus, meaning I had less capacity to be anxious and listen to the worries that so often plague me and the smaller size meant that the pages weren’t too overwhelming when trying to choose a design to start, as sometimes happens in A4 books. The nature of the spiral-binding and cardboard sheath mean it’s perfect for taking with you wherever you go and those of you who, like me, use colouring as therapy or as part of mindfulness, should definitely be investing in this book so that you can have art therapy on the go to whip out when you feel your anxiety increasing or stress levels rising. I highly recommend this book for those of you who love to use fineliners and felt-tips that often bleed in other books and for any of you who want to travel and colour or who use colouring as therapy so that you have it with you whenever you may need it without fear of ruining the book in your bag. This is one of my firm favourites.

If you’d like to purchase a copy it’s available here:
Amazon UK – The Second One and Only Colouring Book for Travelling Adults
Book Depository Worldwide – http://www.bookdepository.com/The-One-Second-One-and-Only-Coloring-Book-for-Travelling-Adults-Part-2-null/9781907912986/?a_aid=colouringitmom

The image below was coloured using Stabilo Point 88 Fineliners and Stabilo 68 Fibre-tips.

Doodle Artist: Peaceful Patterns – A Review

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Annette Rand has kindly sent me a set of her newest three titles to run a UK Giveaway. If you are a UK resident and would like to be in with the chance of winning a copy of Peaceful Patterns, Pets, and Rabbits and Hares, then head over to my Facebook page and enter via the pinned post by 8pm on Sunday the 3rd of April.

Doodle Artist – Peaceful Patterns: A colouring book for grown ups is a lovely book illustrated and kindly sent to me by Annette Rand. This book is filled with 2 copies of 20 full-page images of patterns and they’re lovely! This paperback book is A4 size, with a portrait cover and a huge variety of patterns included within. The book is glue-bound so it’s a little difficult to get it to lie flat but the images are printed single-sided with a large border around them so none of the image is lost into the spine. What I really noticed about this book, apart from the lovely images, is the paper quality. Many self-published books are printed on thin paper that you can see half the proceeding images through. Not-so in Annette’s book, the paper is bright white and thick enough that my water-based fineliners didn’t bleed at all or chew up the paper in any way (they do shadow) so it was a joy to colour and would be perfect for pens or pencils and you could even use your sharpies or alcohol pens with a protective sheet behind so that the next image doesn’t get spoiled. The images are very cohesive and drawn in Annette’s signature style. They vary from mandalas to full page spreads and also include swirling designs that sprawl across the page. This book is more detailed than her other titles and a lot of the patterns will take you a number of hours to complete and are very well-suited to fineliners to really pick out the small sections and bring bright colour to the designs.

In terms of mental health, this book is lovely. It’s really calming and has various different levels of intricacy to suit your good and bad days. The line thickness is the same throughout and I would describe it as thin but not very thin (approximately fineliner thickness). The lines are crisp and accurate with no fuzziness, blurring or not quite joining up so this is a really professional looking book. The images are of patterns, as mentioned before, and the majority are swirling, curvy patterns with few, if any, sharp edges which really adds to the peaceful nature of them. Some of the patterns have larger open spaces to colour in blocks and others have intricate patterns covering them that create lots of small spaces for you to take your time over colouring in. The patterns can be coloured in any way you choose and this allows for calm, zoned out colouring that should really help you de-stress because there are no ‘wrong’ colours or ways of colouring. I find patterns are a great way of testing out colour schemes for other types of colouring page and they really give you a good feel for how colours work together. You will need fairly good concentration in order to enjoy this book because there is a lot of detail but this means it’s great for getting your teeth into and it’ll be fantastic for distracting you from difficult thoughts, or any mental or physical symptoms that are plaguing you.

I found this book really calming and relaxing. Patterns are very good for anxiety because they can be coloured in any colour schemes you fancy, you can just pick up a pen or pencil and colour random sections and just escape from your symptoms. The pictures are beautiful, there are no filler images and each has definitely earnt its right to be there and you could even cut them out once you’re done and frame them. The variation in levels of detail and intricacy means that as long as you have fairly good vision, you’ll be able to enjoy this book on your good and bad days and those of you with moderate to good fine motor control will definitely get a huge amount out of this book. The image below was coloured using Staedtler Triplus Fibre-Tip Pens.

If you’d like to purchase a copy of this book it’s available here:
Amazon UK – Doodle Artist – Peaceful Patterns: A colouring book for grown ups
Book Depository Worldwide – http://www.bookdepository.com/Doodle-Artist—Peaceful-Patterns-Annette-Rand/9781519609786/?a_aid=colouringitmom

If you’d like to read my reviews of Annette’s other titles then click below:
Doodle Artist Butterflies
Doodle Artist Fanciful Rats
Doodle Artist Pets
Doodle Artist Rabbits and Hares
Doodle Artist Simply Snowflakes

Doodle Artist: Rabbits and Hares – A Review

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Annette Rand has kindly sent me a set of her newest three titles to run a UK Giveaway. If you are a UK resident and would like to be in with the chance of winning a copy of Peaceful Patterns, Pets, and Rabbits and Hares, then head over to my Facebook page and enter via the pinned post by 8pm on Sunday the 3rd of April.

Doodle Artist – Rabbits & Hares: A colouring book for grown ups is a lovely book illustrated and kindly sent to me by Annette Rand. This book is filled with 2 copies of 20 full-page images of rabbits and hares and they’re lovely! This paperback book is A4 size, with a portrait cover and a mixture of portrait and landscape images. The book is glue-bound so it’s a little difficult to get it to lie flat but the images are printed single-sided with a large border around them so none of the image is lost into the spine. What I really noticed about this book, apart from the stunning images, is the paper quality. Many self-published books are printed on thin paper that you can see half the proceeding images through. Not-so in Annette’s book, the paper is bright white and thick enough that my water-based fineliners shadowed but didn’t bleed at all or chew up the paper in any way so it was a joy to colour and would be perfect for pens or pencils and you could even use your sharpies or alcohol pens with a protective sheet behind so that the next image doesn’t get spoiled. The images are all of rabbits and hares, as you’d expect, but as with Annette’s other books, they come in a variety of styles and are all filled with beautiful patterns that you can colour within or colour over to make the colouring experience easier or harder.

In terms of mental health, this book is lovely. It’s really calming and has various different levels of intricacy to suit your good and bad days. The line thickness is the same throughout and I would describe it as thin but not very thin (approximately fineliner thickness). The lines are crisp and accurate with no fuzziness, blurring or not quite joining up so this is a really professional looking book. The images of the rabbits and hares are very varied ranging from mandalas to scenes, pairs to singles, patterns to more realistic, there is a surprising amount of variety added to a single, potentially limiting subject! Some of the bunnies have larger open spaces to colour in blocks and others have intricate patterns covering them that create lots of small spaces for you to take your time over colouring in. The rabbits and hares are beautifully drawn – some are swirly, some are patterned, some are furry and a few are more abstract. This really is the colouring book bible for all those who love rabbits and hares. The majority of the images aren’t drawn like real-life rabbits, because they’re covered in patterns or hidden within mandalas but this means that you can use any colour scheme you like, as you’ll see from my bright blue bunny below!

I found this book really calming and relaxing. As with all nature themed books, I find them the most relaxing and the best at reducing my anxiety levels and this book was no exception. The pictures are beautiful, there are no filler images and each has definitely earnt its right to be there and you could even cut them out once you’re done and frame them. The variation in levels of detail and intricacy means that as long as you have fairly good vision, you’ll be able to enjoy this book on your good and bad days and those of you with moderate to good fine motor control will definitely get a huge amount out of this book. The image below was coloured using Staedtler Triplus Fibre-Tip Pens.

If you’d like to get a copy of Rabbits and Hares then head over to
Amazon UK – Doodle Artist – Rabbits & Hares: A colouring book for grown ups
Book Depository Worldwide – http://www.bookdepository.com/Doodle-Artist-Rabbits-Hares-Annette-Rand/9781519452634/?a_aid=colouringitmom

If you’d like to read my reviews of Annette’s other titles then click below:
Doodle Artist Butterflies
Doodle Artist Fanciful Rats
Doodle Artist Peaceful Patterns
Doodle Artist Pets
Doodle Artist Simply Snowflakes

Doodle Artist: Pets – A Review

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Annette Rand has kindly sent me a set of her newest three titles to run a UK Giveaway. If you are a UK resident and would like to be in with the chance of winning a copy of Peaceful Patterns, Pets, and Rabbits and Hares, then head over to my Facebook page and enter via the pinned post by 8pm on Sunday the 3rd of April.

Doodle Artist – Pets: A colouring book for grown ups is a lovely book illustrated and kindly sent to me by Annette Rand. This book is filled with 2 copies of 20 full-page images of pets and they’re lovely! Before you dismiss this book as only containing pictures of cats and dogs, rest assured that although they are both pictured, there are also a huge number of other pets all illustrated in Annette’s beautiful signature style – a full list can be found further into the review and photos of all of the illustrations can be found at the bottom. This paperback book is A4 size, with a portrait cover and a mixture of portrait and landscape images. The book is glue-bound so it’s a little difficult to get it to lie flat but the images are printed single-sided with a large border around them so none of the image is lost into the spine. What I really noticed about this book, apart from the stunning images, is the paper quality. Many self-published books are printed on thin paper that you can see half the proceeding images through. Not-so in Annette’s book, the paper is bright white and thick enough that my water-based fineliners didn’t bleed at all (they did shadow) or chew up the paper in any way so it was a joy to colour and would be perfect for pens or pencils and you could even use your sharpies or alcohol pens with a protective sheet behind so that the next image doesn’t get spoiled. Each of the 20 images portrays a different pet with 2 copies of each so you could colour copies to match your current, or past, pets. The animals included are: a ferret, Mongolian gerbils, Syrian hamster, Chinese fighting fish, African pygmy hedgehog, Fancy mouse, Guinea pigs, Bearded Dragon, Chinchilla, Rhode Island Red hen, Yorkshire Terrier, Budgerigars, Rabbit, Djungarian hamsters, Macaw, Gambian pouched rat, Domestic short-haired cat, Degus, Norway/fancy rat, and a Giant African Land Snail. The illustrations are mostly very recognisable and if you’re not quite sure what each of them is, there’s a helpful key at the front of the book with a named list of the images so you can check.

In terms of mental health, this book is lovely. It’s really calming and has various different levels of intricacy to suit your good and bad days. The line thickness is the same throughout and I would describe it as thin but not very thin (approximately fineliner thickness). The lines are crisp and accurate with no fuzziness, blurring or not quite joining up so this is a really professional looking book. I really enjoyed colouring this book ready for review and it was a great design to use my glitter gel pens on. The pets are beautifully drawn – some are swirly, some are patterned, some are furry and others are scaly. This really is a fabulous book for animal lovers and those who have lots of pets, it would also be an amazing book for vets! The majority of the images aren’t drawn to be exactly like real-life pets, they have realistic outlines but they’re covered in patterns which means that you can use any colour scheme you like, as you’ll see from my glittery rainbow Giant African land snail below!

I found this book really calming and relaxing. As with all nature themed books, I find them the most relaxing and the best at reducing my anxiety levels and this book was no exception. The pictures are beautiful, there are no filler images and each has definitely earnt its right to be there and you could even cut them out once you’re done and frame them. The variation in levels of detail and intricacy means that as long as you have fairly good vision, you’ll be able to enjoy this book on your good and bad days and those of you with moderate to good fine motor control will definitely get a huge amount out of this book. The image below was coloured using UK supermarket own-brand glitter gel pens.

If you’d like to get a copy of this book then it’s available here:
Amazon UK – Doodle Artist – Pets: A colouring book for grown ups

If you’d like to read my reviews of Annette’s other titles then click below:
Doodle Artist Butterflies
Doodle Artist Fanciful Rats
Doodle Artist Peaceful Patterns
Doodle Artist Rabbits and Hares
Doodle Artist Simply Snowflakes

UK GIVEAWAY and Review – Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns for Grown-Ups

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Flowers, Mandalas and Animals: Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns for Grown-Ups (Stress Relieving Coloring Books for Adults) is published by ZenGalaxy Coloring Books and was kindly sent to me to review. If you live in the UK and would like to enter my Giveaway for a copy then head over to my Facebook page HERE where you have until Wednesday the 23rd of March at 8PM GMT to enter on the pinned post.

This book is filled with a variety of images and is a great one to start your colouring journey with or to use for fluctuating conditions and interests. This book is A4, paperback, with a soft-feel cover with a dark grey background and a full colour mandala wrapped around the front and back cover. The images are printed single-sided onto standard CreateSpace paper which is bright white, thin and toothy making it pretty good for layering and blending pencils and fine for pens which will all bleed through so pop a spare piece of paper behind to protect the image on the next page. The spine of the book is glue-bound, however, none of the images are lost into it because they are all either centralised or have a border around them preventing them from entering the spine. The book contains almost 60 images of a multitude of things including mandalas, patterns, paisleys, henna style images, flowers and lots of animals. They are drawn in quite differing styles and look like they’ve been created by a number of different artists though it’s unclear how many.

In terms of mental health, this book has a real variety of images both in content and in intricacy ranging from fairly large open spaces to incredibly detailed and intricate, so much so that a few of these designs will be very challenging to colour without going over the lines. The line thickness varies throughout from medium to spindly thin and the majority of the images are extremely intricate and drawn in a spindly thin line. This book is definitely not one for those of you with any issues with vision or fine motor control and it would be much more suited to those of you with good to perfect levels of both. The images don’t feel especially cohesive because they’re clearly created by different artists and are arranged in quite a random order with a lot of the patterns near the front of the book and the animals being nearer the back but these are interspersed with other images so they’re not arranged into any order or collections. The animals contain huge amounts of pattern and zentangling so there are lots of small spaces to occupy yourself with colouring, or you can colour over them to make it an easier task. This book will require a fairly good level of concentration because of the sheer amount of detail and intricacy and there aren’t really any separate small sections to tackle on bad days so I’d suggest this book for those of you that can colour for a few hours at a time rather than a few minutes. The images are very distracting and the patterns keep you absorbed and busy thus taking your mind off symptoms of any kind.

I would recommend this book to new colourers who are interested in a good variety of image styles and who have good vision and fine motor control. This book contains most themes of image and is a great trial book for narrowing down your interests or for those of you who like to colour lots of different things. Don’t forget that I’m running a UK Giveaway for a copy over on the pinned post on my Facebook page until Wednesday the 23rd of March at 8pm GMT.

You can purchase a copy here:
Amazon UK – Flowers, Mandalas and Animals: Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns for Grown-Ups (Stress Relieving Coloring Books for Adults)

The image below was coloured using Staedtler Ergosoft Coloured Pencils.

Color and Relax: Peaceful Patterns – A Review and GIVEAWAY

Disclaimer – Please read this disclosure about my use of affiliate links which are contained within this post.
Color and Relax: Peaceful Patterns: Volume 1 is set to be a series of themed colouring books and the first title Peaceful Patterns has been kindly sent to me by the illustrator Jo Shiloh who has also very generously sent 4 copies for me to give away (more details below). So, on with the review! Peaceful Patterns is paperback and contains 40 single-sided images of patterns and abstract designs of varying complexities. Each image is surrounded by a thick white border to ensure none of the image is lost into the spine. The paper is bright white and thin and does bleed a fair bit but this is not a problem as long as you put some scrap paper behind your work. The line thickness varies from medium to thick so there are no issues for those of you with poor vision or problems with fine motor control. None of the images are overly intricate or detailed so if teeny tiny spaces aren’t your thing then this book may be ideal for you.

In terms of mental health, this book is great because it contains abstract and unusual patterns which can be coloured in any colours you fancy. You don’t have to make it look realistic or natural, you can just pick up a pen or pencil and start colouring. This means that if decisions are difficult for you to make you may find this helpful because you just need to pick a medium and can even just close your eyes and dig around in the container you keep them in and pick out a random one and get going. The patterns range from square and blocky to swirling and flowing and cover everything in between. This book really reminds me of the altair design colouring books of my childhood and if you liked those then you’ll be sure to like this book. Patterns are great for practising mindfulness while you colour and the repetitive nature of the designs is very calming and relaxing. The image below was coloured using Staedtler Fibre-Tip pens.

If you’d like to get your hands on a copy and you live in the UK then fill in the form below the gallery of images where I’m running a giveaway for 4 lucky people to win a copy each – You have until 6pm on Wednesday the 16th of September to enter. Alternatively, you can order a copy from Amazon here Color and Relax: Peaceful Patterns: Volume 1