Back in February I took a slight career change and began working on The Horsfall, a local creative programme, for which one of my first tasks was crowdfunding to help kick the programme off. This was a baptism of fire and would in itself be a whole series of blog posts but one element was to design the rewards that people could buy. I included the almost obligatory mug and notebooks, made all the easier by a stylish logo created by Taylor O’Brien and the catchy tag line 'Useful and Beautiful', but the reward that overtook my life and resulted in something that left me with a very un-British sense of pride upon completion was the colouring book.
Basing each colouring page on an item from the Ancoats Art Museum collection (now housed in The Whitworth and Manchester Art Gallery) which the Horsfall creative programme is inspired by, I drew line drawings of 40 of the original pieces. Ranging from Pre-Raphaelite paintings and William Morris fabrics to Japanese sword guards and Victorian ceramics.
The project was painstaking and far more time consuming than I had anticipated but the resulting book came together eventually and was printed by Marc the Printers in August and shipped out, with people since sharing photos of them using the book which is really amazing to see, especially as I can remember exactly what I was doing as I drew each piece. Usually watching TV or sat in the sunny garden with a glass of wine!
Hopefully the book will continue to raise money for the programme and bring people as much joy colouring it in as I got from drawing it, and I have even started to colour a copy in myself, which is a challenge in itself as I have never managed to finish a colouring book before, but there is always a first time for everything.