Color Inside and Outside the Lines

By: Susan Liechty, President, and Paris Wolfe, Blogmaster, The Herb Society of America


Take a journey back in time to childhood, when you would sit at the kitchen table and color.  Remember how you felt when you got a new box of crayons?  You can revisit that emotion with a fresh collection of colored pencils or box of crayons.

May be you can’t meditate for more than a few minutes without feeling antsy.  Coloring seems to take that away because the movement of your hands and selection of colors occupies the body and mind.  Just try it.

Among the coloring books for adults are garden themes and even a few herb-focused. In a recent conversation, Illustrator Anna Olver talks about the Medicinal Plants coloring book (Individuality Books, 2016).

With so many herbs how did you choose for the coloring book?

I picked herbs that were well-known and recognizable such as lavender or chamomile.  At the same time, I selected herbs that were more detailed since it is a coloring book.  For instance, I picked a lot of herbs with flowers or some kind of interesting texture.

What medium do you recommend for coloring?

LavendarA lot of it depends on what is going to be the most relaxing. I know people who like markers because they produce bright and vibrant colors.  Because there isn’t any artwork on the back side of these pages you don’t have to worry about ink bleeding through.

I personally love colored pencils.  They offer freedom when it comes to blending colors and, they make it easier shade or vary depth. I have gotten the best effects this way.  Also, a well-sharpened pencil gives more control over lines.

What kind of coloring books do you prefer?

When I have used coloring books in the past I preferred coloring magical creatures like dragons or fairies.  These lend themselves to a pretty wild color palette.

Medicinal Plants and other coloring books can be found on Looking for pencils, check out Sprout herbal pencils. 

Got coloring books? Like pencils? Crayons? Share your favorites.


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