Coloring Books for Art Appreciation
We have used Dover Coloring Books for a long time as a part of our art appreciation and art skills plans. These inexpensive coloring books have helped us follow up on artist studies as well as learn some important drawing skills. There are quite a few examples on this page to help give you some ideas to use with your own children.
Watercolor pencils, Prismacolor pencils, crayons, watercolors, markers....all are great mediums to use with your coloring books.
If you are looking for a product that will teach great art skills and techniques, these coloring books are not the solution. I am looking at the coloring books as a tool to learning some very valuable concepts in a more rounded art program. I do feel that the use of coloring books is a great way to introduce small useful skills.
Coloring Books as a Stepping Stone
One benefit of using Dover Coloring Books has become clearer as the years have ticked by. They actually helped my children learn to draw. My middle son loves to draw airplanes but if you have ever tried to draw a real airplane you realize just how hard it is to get the wings to look right and the shape of the airplane to be in proportion.
My son solved this problem by looking at Dover Coloring Books. He uses them as a guide when he is trying to make his airplanes "look right". He is very visual and after looking at the drawing in the coloring book he can see how the author solved the problem and imitate it in his own drawing by first tracing it and then after he became more familiar with the shapes and perspective, he could draw it free hand. Thanks to the black line drawings in the Dover Coloring Books he is now very proficient at drawing airplanes.
You can read more about this topic on my blog My View on Art Appreciation Using Dover Coloring Books.
Using Coloring Books With Kids Who Don't Color In The Lines
I have a child who never colors inside the lines of a coloring book. I am the opposite and at first it drove me crazy that he wouldn't follow the lines as boundaries for separate colors. Using the lines as a basic guide and not as a strict "do not cross" line, your child can individualize the pages.
I have seen how observing the black lines of the coloring pages shows them how to set up their own paintings. By comparing the coloring book outlines to the original artist's painting, they can see how the sketch you start from doesn't always show all the details. It may not seem like an earth-shattering concept but it is something that every artist needs to know.
My Favorite Picks for Art Appreication - Dover Coloring Books that Give You A Lot of Bang For Your Buck
I like to have a stock of coloring books on had for our family to supplement their artist study with as we go along. Dover Publications has the best assortment at a reasonable price that I have ever found. I have given you links to the books we use the most and I think have the best variety.
Art Appreciation Follow-Up Activity (Degas Coloring Book)
Variety of Topics Are Available
You can supplement your history, science, art, music, literature and just about anything else with Dover Coloring Books.
Try Dover Coloring Book Pages Free!
You can sign up to receive weekly free Dover Coloring Book pages. I have found these to be a great source of supplemental artwork and inspiration.
It is always nice to preview materials before you purchase so go ahead and sign up for their weekly free samples to come right into your email box. I will view the pages available and then print those that I think we will eventually use in our homeschooling. I keep them in a folder that my children can access during their free time as well.
Supplies We Use With Our Coloring Books
Here are some ideas of art supplies to use with your Dover Coloring Books.
Use a Variety of Art Supplies-Watercolor Pencils
Another Art Medium-Markers
This One Was Done With Colored Pencils
Watercolors Make a New Art Project Too!
Dover Coloring Books - Blog Entries and New Releases
- Dover Coloring Book Tips
My blog entry showing a variety of coloring pages and lots of tips.
- Dover Coloring Books Review on My Blog
Short review of Dover Coloring books.
Use Coloring Pages in Your Nature Study
Thanks for Visiting! Please feel free to leave a comment.
Sherry Venegas from La Verne, CA on March 23, 2011:
I just bought my 88 yr old Mom historical coloring books and pencils to give her something new to do. She was a bit stuck on puzzles. I thought it would be a fun change. I asked her, "Do you want to color?" " No." I had to explain that coloring is not like what I did with crayons. lol I like your photo examples here.
KarenTBTEN on March 13, 2011:
Really good ideas. I think coloring books aren't art in and of themselves, but can be used in ways that turn them into art lessons -- as you have demonstrated. SquidAngel blessings.
ElizabethJeanAl on January 15, 2011:
Coloring and art are great learning tools for any subject. I teach physics and physical science. We often draw and color set ups for lab experiments.
Delia on December 26, 2010:
Another great lens! I agree coloring books can be a great tool to teach skills and techniques, I also think that drawing outside of the lines is their way of expressing and their own style that can be developed.