In my NYC art therapy practice, I come across lots of adults who struggle with burn out and who would benefit from making more time for themselves in the day to day. Yet it can be hard to find something replenishing with packed schedules and limited resources. Enter adult coloring books!
Coloring books are the perfect solution that you can pick up for three minutes or 30 minutes- they offer myriad benefits and can be a carefree outlet for stress. Furthermore, coloring books are a great re-introduction to art making for adults who have not made art for many years. Art can feel intimidating or inaccessible for the average adult but it doesn’t have to be. Coloring books provide an outline of an image, which is much less scary than a blank page, but with endless options for you to color the image so it leaves plenty of of room for creativity and expression.
I have joked a lot lately that the widespread use of adult coloring books has “restored my faith in humanity”. Jokes aside, the rise in popularity of these books reflects a shift in our perception that is more embracing of self care and more greatly values the use of creativity of our day to day lives by people who would not necessarily consider themselves artists. Furthermore, this could reflect a shift in the popularity of art therapy, which is a small but growing profession that is often underutilized in the therapy and self improvement community.
With this in mind, I recently participated in the creation of “The Real Art Therapists of New York Coloring Book“. The coloring book features images and interviews from 50 NYC art therapists. It also includes a self assessment exercise for you to do before and after coloring to increase your mindfulness and to reap the full benefits of coloring. The goal of the book is not only to offer some beautiful coloring pages but also to increase the awareness of art therapy.