Wednesday, 30 March 2016

The Macmillan Jungle Book

The Macmillan Jungle Book
Artists: various


The cover

My colouring

Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book was first published by Macmillan in 1894. The illustrations were done by Kipling's father. Unlike the Macmillan Alice which includes Tenniel's original illustrations on virtually every page, there are none of the original Kipling illustrations in this book. What we have in this colouring book is a jungle extravaganza.

At a glance…..

Size - 225 x 287, 96 pages
Single-sided images - no
Images into the spine - yes
Paper - white, smooth and sturdy
Perforated - no
Water based pens - okay, with care
Who will love it - those who are looking for jungle themes, those who love strong colours and those who like a connection to a classic story.

You can find out more…..

At Book Depository;  Amazon US;  Amazon UK
and at Mighty Ape NZ

Tell me more…..






Comment: Once I realised that the only inclusions from the original Jungle Book were 10 pages with quoted text and none of the original illustrations, I realised that this was a very different book to the Macmillan Alice.
Instead this is a jungle themed book put together from the images of a few artists. Text is added where it teams up with certain illustrations, so the text isn't a narrative in itself.
For those of you who love jungle images, this book has it all. It is arguably the most approachable jungle themed colouring book to date.
Now I want to go and look at Kipling's original illustrations!













Drawing and Design: the images are taken from Shuttlestock and/or drawn by these artists - Ian Cunliffe, Nadiya Vasilkova and Eliz Huseyin, one of whom also worked on Alice. Despite various artist input, there is a cohesion to the drawing as a whole. There's a slight generic feel to some of these images; as if you've seem something similar in colouring magazines and compilations. The foliage patterns and the bejewelled animal faces are ideas I've seen elsewhere.

Bejewelled animals

Most of the designs are strong, not too intricate and ideal for beginner colourers or those who don't like highly detailed images. The boldness of the drawings seems to beg for bright colours, such as water-based markers. You'll struggle to get enough depth of colour from pencils I think. Remember to test your pens on a back page first to check for bleeding and shadowing.
Line length is good, medium thickness and it shouldn't take too long to colour these images. You certainly won't need a magnifying glass!
There are several black background images too which is fantastic. There is a wonderful array of jungle animals and many varied textures of foliage, and several of the images are double spread wallpapers.
What is immediately obvious, even from the cover, is the mix of line drawing and greyscale. Check out the eyes in some of the following examples and the cover above. It's a really interesting mix and I think it works well.

Greyscale eyes and muzzle
Paper and Layout: the paper is sturdy and white and will take water-based pens well if used with care. While several images are double-page spreads, the book lies flat enough to not give problems with images disappearing into the spine. The book is glue and string bound.
However there is one issue that this publisher needs to address, as it occurred in the Macmillan Alice book too. Even with really gentle handling, and before I had even looked in detail at this book, the book had come away from the cover. You can see this in the image below. It is easily remedied with some PVA glue run down the spine of the cover and reattached to the book.

Inside fold out cover showing cover separating from the book
More images -












* This book was sent to me by the publisher for an honest appraisal. Thanks.


Monday, 28 March 2016

21 Must See New Colouring Books in April

So, here are the books being published next month that have caught my eye, with links, so you can have a browse and add to your Wishlist.
The release dates are based on Book Depository so Amazon release dates may vary.
Let me know if there's a book here that you'd like me to review.

Colouring Books


Escape to Shakespeare"s World by Good Wives and Warriors
See my review of their February release here.
Flip through video is - here.
"A beautiful, intricate colouring book, full of romantic, inspirational and dramatic quotes from the favourite plays and poems of William Shakespeare."
You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon UK;
Amazon US and at Mighty Ape 






Romantic Country Book 1 by Eriy


"Magnificent rural villages, prairies, forests, lakeside scenery and a beautiful towering castle await you."

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK and at Mighty Ape







Gulliver's New Travels

"a creative colouring book inpired by Swift's 18th-century classic, featuring different worlds and playing with scale as in the lands of teeny Lilliput and giant Brobdingnag."

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK and at Mighty Ape 






Art Therapy Disney Animals

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;











Dr Who Travels in Time

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK










Tangled Travels by Jane Monk
My review is here.

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK










The Fourth One & Only Colouring Book
My review is here. You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK










A Million Dogs by Lulu Mayo

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK











Fairies in Wonderland

You can read my review  here.

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK









All Good by Jo Pearson. Now available internationally.

You can find out more at Book Depository;  Amazon
and at Mighty Ape 








Mehndi Advanced Colouring

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon










Tree of Life Advanced Colouring

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon










Beautiful Colouring by Felicity French

You can find out more at Book Depository;  Amazon US
and at Amazon UK










Colour & Frame Nature by Felicity French

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon UK
and Mighty Ape 










Colour & Frame Patterns by Felicity French

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon UK
Mighty Ape 










Postcards and Posters




Millie Marotta's Tropical Wonderland Postcards - 30 pack

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK and at Mighty Ape 









Vintage Vogue Postcards
You can see my review here.
You can find out more at Book Depository;  Amazon USAmazon UK
and at Mighty Ape 








One & Only Elephant Parade Postcards

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US
Amazon UK







One & Only Mini Mandala Postcards

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK









Harry Potter Poster Coloring Book

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;
Amazon UK and at Mighty Ape 








Fairies in Wonderland Postcards - 20 pack
See my review of the book version here.

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon UK;  Amazon US


Friday, 25 March 2016

Have You Tried Querkling Yet?

Querkles Icon
Artist: Thomas Pavitte


Colouring by numbers has never really appealed to me, so I was a little ambivalent as I started colouring my first Querkles. I got so involved in it that dinner was an hour late. I just couldn't put it down!
Thomas has two new Querkles titles out this year; Querkles Animals and Querkles Cats to join Querkles Masterpieces and Querkles Icons. You can find links at the bottom of this page.



Janis Joplin coloured by me
Amy Winehouse coloured by Jane






















Jim Morrison coloured by my visitor, Paola

Tell me more…..


Comment: New Zealand graphic designer, Thomas Pavitte, has come up with a new twist on colouring by numbers. We're all familiar with that poster art style of Andy Warhol where you have to stand back from the image to make sense of it. Querkles are like that. As you are colouring them you don't really see where it's all heading, but hold the image well away from you, and you'll be amazed! The non colourers in this house are looking quite interested in this book!

Drawing: It's difficult to comment on the drawing when there appears to be just a vast array of intersecting circles with numbers inside them. You take five colours, or shades of one colour and grade them from darkest to lightest, giving them numbers 1 to 5. Start with one number and colour in all the shapes with that number. Then move on to the next colour and number. Instead you can choose to do cross hatching technique or choose contrasting colours, The image slowly takes shape. Watch this video of the process.




Layout: Querkles books are quite large;  25cm x 35cm. The images are on single-sided pages that are perforated for careful removal. Alcohol pens will bleed through the paper but this shouldn't impact on the other drawings if you put a loose sheet of paper behind the image you're colouring. 
In the images Jane and I coloured, Jane used pencils and I used Reno alcohol markers. Jane felt that she used up a lot of dark pencil length, so perhaps don't use your expensive pencils on this. I liked the slightly patchy look from the markers and for my next one, I'll try my cheap Artline Stix markers.
There are 20 portraits of icons in this particular book, with a portrait index at the back. 
You can opt to choose the icon you want to colour or be surprised by the end result.
 I hope you enjoy these as much as we will continue to.
Bring on the next two books.
Now back to Beethoven!

You can find out more here...





Querkles Icons












Querkles Masterpieces

At Book Depository;   Amazon US;  Amazon UK      





















Querkles Animals  - due the end of June 








Querkles Cats - due out at the end of the year






* This book was sent to me by the publisher for an honest appraisal. Thanks.

Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Stand by! Kerby Rosanes' Releases in 2016


Without a doubt the highlight for us all is the publication of a new colouring book by Kerby.






Not long to wait now for Imagimorphia.
You can read my review here plus Video flip through

You can find out more at Book Depository;  Amazon UK edition
At Amazon US UK edition; Amazon US US edition
and at Booktopia (AU)




Sketchy Stories - not a colouring book but a book of sketches and drawings to give you an insight into the talent of Kerby Rosanes.
You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;  Amazon UK
and at Booktopia (AU)




Animorphia Notebook


You can find out more at Book Depository;  Amazon US;  Amazon UK
and at Booktopia (AU)





Animorphia Postcards

You can find out more at Book DepositoryAmazon US;  Amazon UK and Booktopia (AU)




Animorphia Posters - available only at Book Depository at this stage.
You can find out more at Book Depository and Booktopia (AU)


Animorphia colouring by Trevor Taylor


Do join me on Facebook here.

Sunday, 20 March 2016

The Big Chill-Out Colouring Book


My Colourng



The Big Chill-Out Colouring Book




First published as Designer Doodles in 1995.

Here is the Facebook page for this book. 

When we ran a colouring competition on Facebook for this book last year, it was astounding that two people entered with colourings from the original edition, twenty years ago!
It has to be a special book that holds its place on the bookshelf, and in the heart, for that long.

Tell me more…..


Comment: I like books of patterns. There's something quite satisfying about colouring borders and designs, especially those from other cultures and history. Because of the large format of this book, you won't get lost in microscopic detail. 
I've enjoyed colouring it and I'm looking forward to Christine's next book. 
I hope it isn't twenty years away!

Drawing: the book consists of twelve varied patterns inspired by many diverse cultures and historic patterns from around the world. There are Celtic and Arabic patterns and geometric designs of Ancient Rome and patterns with Renaissance ornamentation. The line width is consistent throughout and a couple of images are more detailed designs. See below. Other images allow space for shading in the background.



Coloured by Helen





.Layout and Paper: This book is big! It is A3 in overall size - 300 x 425mm. The size is fine when colouring the landscape aligned images, but in the portrait alignments, it can be difficult to reach the top. I decided to using a drawing board.

In most ways this book ticks the boxes for what colourers like to see in a colouring book.
The pages are single-sided, they have borders, there are no issues with images running in to the spine and the pages can be detached either by taking out the staples or by careful cutting.
The pages are stapled down the centre so that the book lies flat.
The paper is white and smooth but sturdy.
On the front inside cover Christine gives useful advice on what media to use from alcohol-based markers to watercolours, gouache to metallic markers. If you are going to use alcohol markers, perhaps put a sheet of paper behind the image just in case.



Advice on the inner cover





You can find out more….

and at Mighty Ape NZ

- Here is an album of colouring based on two images from the book -
* This book was sent to me by the publisher for an honest appraisal. Thanks.