The artwork in this book is stunning and leans toward a traditional style of tattoo. Lots of animals: roaring tigers, leaping sharks, snakes wrapped around skulls and whatnot.
The cover art is beautiful, and there's a pull-out section in the middle wherein the images are beautifully filled in. You could easily remove and display it if you wanted.
I was probably most excited by some of the more offbeat art choices. There's a skull with octopus tentacles wrapped around. A bird with a monocle and tophat that looks oddly Sherlockian.
Adult coloring books tend to be really intense in their designs. Complicated, intricate pictures that take ages to color. This book is nice because many of the images are a little more open with a bit more breathing room. Coloring one is generally not a week-long commitment. Maybe just an hour or two depending on the picture or spread.
While the artwork is grand, I'm quickly discovering that not all coloring books are created equal because at the root of the thing is the paper quality. The paper in this book feels lovely and thick, but I've found that it's quick to disintegrate if you try to layer many colors together. I'm a big fan of layering and blending colors, and it's not unusual at all, in this book, for the paper to begin wearing away in spots. I've also found that the paper texture doesn't actually take color that well. A slicker paper would show truer, more vivid colors.
I shared a long shot of this picture on Sunday, but here's a closer one. There's a little more color in real life--it always looks more washed out in photos--but this paper just won't take the vivid color I appreciate from other books.
This was the first picture I colored from the book, and while the color is a little better in this one, it took a lot of work and quite a few worn spots.
Overall the artwork in this coloring book can't be beat, but the paper quality really is an artistic buzz kill. Buy with caution.
Pub Date: November 2013
Publisher: Laurence King Publishing
Source: Bought it!