If you’re working at keeping your brain sharp with word puzzles and Lumosity brain games, take it to another level because life’s not all about words and numbers; it’s also about color, balance, symmetry and design.
So put away your crossword puzzles and Sudoku and pick up your crayons. Or if you’re a grown-up, your colored pencils. There’s a whole new mind-challenging playground out there for you: coloring books.
You might want to start with The Rainbow Dragon coloring books. The hand-drawn kaleidoscopic patterns look a little like exotic tattoos, snowflakes or zodiac designs, and once you’ve discovered your inner colorist, there are Rainbow Dragon gift tags, note cards and Christmas ornaments.
When you’re ready for something more challenging, search out Johanna Basford’s Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Colouring Book. Not only are the spaces you have to color smaller and more intricate, Basford has added a little treasure hunt. On each page, there is hidden a tiny creature or two, and some pages have left the garden unfinished so you can add flora and fauna of your own.
When you’re ready, there’s The Art of Nature Coloring Book: 60 Illustrations Inspired by Vintage Botanical and Scientific Prints. This is an 18th and 19th century collection on art-quality vellum paper designed to be pulled out and framed, prints of wildlife, mushrooms, flowers and all things that creep, fly, grow and go bump in the night. Not easy coloring but intensely educational and therapeutic.
So put aside your word games and delight your corpus callosum. A simple Internet search will provide you with several coloring books for big people. You can color butterflies, enchanted forests, an entire animal kingdom, Buddhist symbols, birds and Hindu goddesses.
You can also stumble onto precariously playful terrain. Adult with a naughty sense of humor is the stuff of coloringforgrownups. com. And then there’s hard-to-find and expensive X-rated The Erotic Coloring Book by Craig Berlin—fun to look at, more fun to color.
By Sherri Daley