Penny Farthing Graphics is a husband and wife team from the US who have between them curated and published around 60 colouring books! The majority of the books consist of patterns and mandalas but just recently they have forayed into some strange, wonderful and amazing illustrations that I think should have lots more recognition. The two books I'm reviewing today are poles apart, so buckle up and brace yourself for some stunning art and serious weirdness!
Awesome Animals is a collection of 64 animal designs from artists across the globe. The illustrations range from ornamental elephants and wolves to giant insects and birds, all full of patterns and monochrome decoration ready to be coloured. Each page is so highly detailed that they take a long time to complete, yet they're not filled with tiny spaces of intricacy so your magnifying glass isn't needed! This would be a great book for someone with sight issues as each creature takes up almost the whole page, so they're nice and easy to see. You're definitely getting value for money with the amount of colouring space on offer. Some of the designs have a zentangle feel whilst others are adorned with a more Aztec and Native American theme.
The linework is a mixture of thin and thick across the board, as you can see in the slideshow. I think it's a great starter book for someone who is new to adult colouring and isn't yet sure what styles they prefer to colour, as there is such a variety available. The paper feels thick, white and smooth, although you'll need to put a sheet of paper between the pages to avoid bleed through. Each design is single sided, so you can use whatever medium you like.
Here's my finished page, completed with Spectrum Noir markers.
And now for something completely different!
As promised on the cover, there are no mandalas, fancy patterns or cutesy animals here. The Bizarre Coloring Book for Adults is a foray into an unearthly world of insanity, where madness and delerium are abound! A fantastic book for the upcoming Hallowe'en season, it includes ghastly and gruesome artwork such as zombies, gas masks, brains, skeletons, a rib cage, robots, plenty of skulls, horrifying teddies and one pretty normal bulldog.
Although it is right up my street in terms of dark and disturbing humour, I know it won't be to everyone's taste. What I will say though is that many of the illustrations are so beautifully crafted that once coloured, they would look like really interesting artwork- a definite talking point that's for sure! The book format and paper quality is identical to Awesome Animals, so I won't reiteate those details. Linework again is varied, as is the subject matter from one page to the next.
"There are 49 images. Why 49? Because you couldn't handle 50!"
Here are my finished pages (I couldn't do just one when I saw his other half later in the book!) completed with several brands of alcohol markers. I call them Adam and Barbara (if you don't get that reference, they are the dead couple in Beetlejuice!).
I was given these books in exchange for an honest review. You can find them on Amazon here: