Artist Marjorie Sarnat’s Latest Coloring Book Available Now!
Our own Marjorie Sarnat just released a brand new coloring book, one that will thrill old fans and new. This time, Marjorie has created wonderful images of life under the waves. There are 31 designs to color, each on its own perforated page so that you can easily display your handiwork. Marjorie is the author of books on creativity as well as great coloring books at Dover.
Marjorie also hosts a Facebook group that you can join. It’s a fun place to share your work as well as get tips on improving your coloring skills.
We caught up with Marjorie recently to ask her about her work and her philosophy of creativity:
Dover: How did you find your way to creating coloring books?
Marjorie Sarnat: I had painted a series of cats, called Kleo Kats, in acrylics on canvas. The cats are covered in flowers and patterns, and were inspired by the decorative style of the great master, Gustav Klimt. I so enjoyed painting the details, and thought, “these patterns would be fun for others to color, too.” With coloring books in mind, I did some sketches based on my paintings and sent them to Dover Publications. The editor also thought colorists would enjoy them and asked me develop a coloring book of 31 cat images. We believed in the book, but what we didn’t know was that Creative Cats would become a runaway best seller soon after it was released in the Spring of 2015.
I continued to work with the editor to add new coloring book subjects in my fanciful style. Owls was our next release, followed by Textile Designs, Dazzling Dogs, Fanciful Foxes, Creative Kittens, Playful Puppies, Beautiful Angels, Fanciful Sea Life, and more in development. As an artist who loves detail, patterns, whimsy, and beautiful things, creating coloring books fulfils my creative aspirations. I’ve found the perfect format for my artistic expression, and intend to continue creating new books as a rewarding part of my life. I’ve learned a lot by seeing the various ways colorists interpret my drawings. It’s the colorists who keep me feeling connected to the outside world in my artistic endeavors.
Dover: What can you tell us about the newest book, Fanciful Sea Life? What was your inspiration and was there any research that you did to create the book?
Marjorie: Fanciful Sea Life was a subject first suggested by my editor, Diane Rubins. As soon as I heard the topic, I saw visions of the vast mysterious beauty of the sea. Next I visited the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, near my home in Southern California. I was spellbound by seeing incredible creatures in their watery environment, observing details that don’t always show in photos. Nature has an imagination no human could conjure up alone. This research inspired me create the images, some realistic and others based on ocean lore, that are included in the book.
Dover: You seem committed to sharing art with everyone! How did you arrive at this philosophy?
Marjorie: I was born loving art, both creating it and looking at it. I don’t have a favorite artist because I love them all, each for different reasons. Early in my career I worked as an art teacher where I saw inherent creativity in the youngsters, and hoped to encourage everyone retain or regain their natural talents for thinking creatively. Creative thinking skills help us problem solve so we don’t feel trapped by life’s situations. Art offers an escape from stress in our everyday lives and helps us feel hopeful. Whether we create it or appreciate the works of others, art speaks to our uniqueness and importance as part of humanity.
Dover: Do you have advice you have for people who might not consider themselves to be artistic?
Marjorie: Most people don’t realize how artistic they actually are. Perhaps you have a great feel for color and style, but because you don’t draw or paint, you don’t realize that you have the building blocks of art. You need confidence and practice. If you want to create art, no better way to begin than with coloring books. You don’t need to draw well to express yourself through color and creative techniques. Coloring books are now their own amazing art form, providing an outlet for natural talent and a way to connect with others who share that passion.