Let’s color together.

I’m always drawing to keep my anxiety at bay but I never color the pieces.  Just black and white and white and black, and while that’s all well and good I think it would be fun to actually add color to one of my drawings, but I don’t entirely know what I’m doing so what if we do this together?

Here’s a picture I just finished.  Print it out.  Post it on your wall.  Color it.  Smear it with water colors.  Share it with me.


Click on the image to embiggen.

PS. This isn’t in my new book.  It’s just an extra for free because you’re awesome.  Here’s a link if you want to preorder the book.

UPDATED: COLORING IS HARD, Y’ALL.  Still working on it.



And now…time for the weekly wrap-up!


Shit I made in my shop (Named “EIGHT POUNDS OF UNCUT COCAINE” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):


This week’s wrap-up is brought to you by Potsafe.  At first I thought it was a safe to keep your pot in but turns out it’s a very cool kitchen safety accessory that protects kids (and everyone else) from accidental burns.  It’s actually really smart and you can check it out right here.  Mounts in minutes and protects kids (And clumsy people like me) from pulling a hot saucepan down from the stove.  Check out the video for a demo.

101 thoughts on “Let’s color together.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. I tried adult colouring books. Unfortunately, I am too much of a perfectionist and couldn’t get past criticizing my mistakes (colouring outside the lines, etc.). Still looking forward to your new book, anyway, cause your art is so fantastic.

  2. You know the ancient labyrinth patterns created for walking meditation? I always wondered how someone designs those. That’s what your designs are: unbelievably awesome meditation labyrinths for coloring. So cool.

  3. Some of the best art comes from people who don’t know what they’re doing. I color your drawings in with abandon and have no idea what I’m doing either, I just know it keeps me from killing people when I’m under stress. win/win.

    This one is lovely, I will start on it as soon as I finish the Mermicorn I’m working on now.

  4. You know the problem with color? It takes commitment. Black and white is just that, black and white. You can erase, move, change, redo, fix, redesign, or simply not finish. But once you start adding color, then you are committed. Committed to the design. Committed to that particular color, even if you get half way finished and decide you don’t like the color. Committed to a beginning and an ending. You’re committed to finishing.
    Coloring your picture is much like adding color to our life. Black and white is easy, it’s adding color to our lives that’s difficult.
    Thanks for making me think

    (Ditto. ~ Jenny)

  5. If you haven’t seen Sybil MacBeth’s Praying in Color–originally published about 10 years ago–you really, really should check it out on Amazon. She also has a new coloring book, pray and color. Both books are for anybody regardless of what they happen to believe or not believe –and she’s really cool, too.

  6. Honestly, I like it just fine without color, which I would probably screw up. Why ruin it? It goes on my office wall where I need it the most.

  7. Oooh, I really like the pan thingie. (Not that I don’t love your drawing, it’s like concept art for a new Rhode Island state seal.) But the pan thingie! It would be very useful if you have twitches/jerks/spasms.

  8. Perhaps you hesitate to color because you are a color outside the lines kind of gal. Perhaps this is the only instance in your life where you actually make the lines for the rest of the world to stay inside of. Maybe it is because you are literal.Maybe it is because color offers so many options and you can’t decide. Yeah whatever. Fuck that. It’s actually because you didn’t have a decent set of crayons when you were little. Clearly you can blame this on society, your school, your neighborhood drug store for a lack of selection, your school for stifling your creativity, your parents for depriving you of the big box of crayolas with the sharpener. It isn’t you, it’s them. Haha.

    Some create. Some color what others created. I am of the second variety. Draw on.

  9. I too think we need to use the word embiggen. Especially about bodies. I’m not putting on weight – I’m embiggening.
    If nothing else it will confuse them for long enough to change the subject. (Although why would I actually have that conversation with anyone anyway. )

    Sooo we can print this?….

    (Totally. Print away for personal use. 🙂 ~ Jenny)

  10. Anonymous sure does like building fences in Texas….. some kind of hammer fixation maybe?

    (I keep waiting to figure out the secret code. 🙂 ~ Jenny)

  11. I can’t find the patience to color these things. How does anyone do it?? I try, but after about a minute I’m going crazy and throwing down the sharpie. So maybe I can just use one color and a small selection of the picture, but then that requires decisions and there are way too many choices. Fortunately, the pictures are beautiful in b/w.
    Meow meow meow

  12. Do you have a Rory one in your book?

    (Ooh. That’s a really good idea. Hmm… ~ Jenny)

  13. Thank you!! I love it in the black and white but I’m excited to see how other people color it in.

    (also that potsafe thing is genius)

  14. How do I post my colored version? I spent the day coloring thanks to you. Thank you for helping me pass my Sunday doing something other than staring at the computer.

    (I don’t know because I’m sort of an idiot but I know it can be done. Or you can just post a link to it in the comments. ~ Jenny)

  15. I am a high school teacher and my coworker, the sharer of my space in the office and my next door roommate (we share a movable wall), has passed away unexpectedly today (well, now Sunday). I don’t know what I will say and do tomorrow, I don’t know how I will help manage my students grief, but I did know that I would bring this drawing with me for students to color, if someone wants to do so. I am also sharing a letter with my students that reads in part: “As long as there is one upright man, as long as there is one compassionate woman, the contagion may spread and the scene is not desolate. Hope is the thing that is left to us, in a bad time. I shall get up Sunday morning and wind the clock, as a contribution to order and steadfastness.
    Sailors have an expression about the weather: they say, the weather is a great bluffer. I guess the same is true of our human society — things can look dark, then a break shows in the clouds, and all is changed, sometimes rather suddenly…
    Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope. And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day.” – E B White
    Thank you…

    (I am sending you such love. Your students are lucky to have you. ~ Jenny)

  16. It’s gorgeous. I’ve forwarded this to my coloring friends. Coloring adds stress to my life, so I’ll have to play by my own rules. I’ll let you know if the knitted version I made in my head at midnight actually turns out.

  17. My husband is a retired Naval officer, and as a wife of the sea, I appreciate the sentiment. In fact, when Navy folks move on from one duty station to another, it’s traditional to bid them “fair winds and following seas.”

    A print of this would make an excellent gift for a Navy family! Or tattoo. I like that idea also.

  18. this is elegant and yes i’ve printed it out. When the world settles down a bit more I’ll haul out the sharpies and have at it. The nice thing is, it can be done over and over…coloring in and of itself is a meditation, isnt it. You let yourself drift on the colors. It’s incredibly calming.
    You are a wonder, Jenny. truly. Don’t ever give up on yourself.

  19. That is a gorgeous drawing. I am looking forward to your book. I might print it out, but as some of your other commenters, I am not going to colour it in. I don’t have the patience for it.

  20. Argh, the chip cards! I’ve started thanking the cashiers at places that put signs on the readers to make it clear if they have chip capability or not yet. And there’s one store I go to that has a nice pleasant chime when it’s time to remove the chip card instead of the “you did something wrong”
    BEEEEP. I think I comment on that just about every other time I shop there too. The actual act of inserting the chip card doesn’t bother me so much – it takes a little longer but I’ve gotten used to that. But the lack of clarity in this transition period where half of the stores require it and half don’t take it is annoying! As is the lack of distinction between “oops, you did something wrong” beep and “your transaction is finished, remove your card” beep.

  21. The chip reader at my local grocery store makes this “BRAAAMP BRAAAMP BRAAAMP” buzz when the transaction is done. It always makes me worry that I’ve run out of money or my card has been compromised or something, because it’s NOT a happy sound at all. If they could change it so that it makes a nice little victory fanfare or something I’d feel a lot better.

  22. I love that Zazzle reviews are for the base item, not your customization.

    Review on BADASS MOTHERFUCKER nameplate: “Ordered for my daughter’s college graduation. It’s very nicely made and nice color as pictured.”

  23. I’ve colored the pictures you shared & have them all hanging on my wall..thank you, for being you.

  24. Naturally, my innate and out-of-control anxiety immediately jumps to, “Is there a due date?”

  25. Oh my goodness ! Jen I love that inner medallion so much ! Those words just…I can’t even articulate how much that speaks to me. I would love to use that image for my next tattoo. It’d be super awesome if you’re cool with that.

    (I’d be honored. ~ Jenny)

  26. Thank you for making this and posting it. The sentiment is just what I needed to see and hear today.

  27. I’ve been coloring for years and suddenly I’m not a freak anymore, I’m cool! I did my gravatar which is suppose to look like me but it doesn’t. Color on, people! :o)

  28. For a desk plate, I have long liked one with a sideways arrow and the words “Please take your silly-ass problem down the hall”

  29. I think my brain is more warped than yours on some levels. I absolutely ADORE your artwork. I mean like OBSESS over it! But the idea of having to color it sends my brain into fits of yelling at me “I’M AN OCD ASSHOLE, REMEMBER?” and then I get all hivey and anxious. So, while I have pre-ordered it and will probably hang all of them on my walls, I need a pass on the coloring part.* *Unless I enlist the help of my totes non-crazy 11 year old daughter! P.S. YOU ROCK. P.P.S. Thank you for sharing your craziness and making it seem like there’s nothing those of us who suffer from whatever ailment can’t get through because… JENNY. P.P.P.S. Promise I can hide with you in the bathroom if I ever get to meet you one day. <3

  30. I want to stick that in MS Paint and fill in the little fiddly bits. Of course I would do it in MS Paint because technologically I’m still pining for 1998.

  31. You’re so incredibly talented Jenny and such a lovely human. I would totally colour this in but I have a habit of not finishing things and I’m only to pages into another colouring book #oops

  32. In response to Anonymous #47 who posted on October 17, 2016 at 8:56 am, “Naturally, my innate and out-of-control anxiety immediately jumps to, “Is there a due date?”

    I just want you to know that I see you. I know you. I am YOU. Literally. Yes, I posted that yesterday when overwhelmed with….life. So, little Miss You, yes, ME, guess what? I printed the page this morning and I’m going to begin, enjoy, and complete this with or without a due date. AND hang on to your pantaloons, I’m going to attempt to Tweet my completed artwork.

    Thanks, Jenny, for this little gift. It’s inspiring in that it made me think last night, consider the non-big deal (i.e. what anxiety?), and go for it. It’s kind of like anything else in life (within reason and within the law 😉 that should be pondered first before allowing that Damnable Anxiety Devil to throw the Net of Suffocation over me.

    A little drawing. I mean, what the hell? These instantaneous fits of anxiety really need to take a vacation. Pricks.

  33. Maybe you posted it somewhere and maybe I missed it but would love to know what tools you use for your drawings. Or are they free-hand?

  34. Do you use tools to make your drawings or is it all completely freehand? The circles look so perfect.

  35. I’ve pre-ordered your book and can’t wait to see it. It will also make a great Christmas gift, I think.

  36. Hi! I’ve been reading your posts for a while, but this is my first time commenting on one of them. I just wanted to say that I colored your drawing! Thank you so much for letting everyone add on to it. All of your art is filled with so much detail – I loved coloring the bubbles! And those scales are gorgeous (they must have taken so much time to draw), not to mention the rain drops and storm clouds… The whole thing is just beautiful. It makes me think of a giant compass, in a way, with all of the points leading off into different directions… It’s really, really amazing. I kind of cheated because I did it online (my printer hasn’t exactly been working lately), but here’s my colored version:

    Thanks again for making this! You’re so cool! 😀

  37. I’m not much of a colorer except with fabric, but your drawings do inspire me to try quilting something amazing. Thank you for being an inspiration to others. I can’t wait to buy your book. Maybe you could do a calendar too!

  38. I love your drawings, especially this one. Luckily for me, I just got a big pack of Star Wars crayons and have been itching to use them.

  39. I actually prefer kids’ coloring books because yours are so pretty, I get anxiety about messing them up. It’s like you gave me your anxiety, Jenny. Thanks a lot.

    My presidential campaign is “I’m getting worse.” Meet your new president, guys.

  40. It’s absolutely stunning. I would never have the patience to make something like this! I don’t think I’ll try coloring it because adult coloring book intricate pictures like that increase my anxiety when I try to color them, but I might just print it out and hang it up.

  41. I’ve actually been trying to learn how to work with colours. Drawing I’d therapeutic for me too.

  42. I’ve been coloring for years to help me relax because I stress. Every damned day. I can’t wait for yours to come out! Buying it for my daughter as well!

  43. I have never actually given colouring a go and now i will. I will make it my mission to get the pens and start this weekend as it is a holiday here in New Zealand. Anything to help the head space.
    Thank you

  44. My coloring skills are..well, I don’t really have any, but I love that drawing and would risk embarrassing myself yet again and try coloring it. 🙂

  45. Jenny, this might be a dumb question but how do you get your drawings onto the computer? Do you use a graphics tablet?

    (I just take a picture with my phone when it’s done and upload it here. ~ Jenny)

  46. GURL. Shit like this is why I choose Paint By Sticker. Which is a REAL THING. AND I HAVE SEVERAL BOOKS AND SEVERAL ON PREORDER.

    Coloring is too stressful for me. I can’t pick the right colors! I can’t blend! Stickers solve all dem problems.

  47. Thank you for the beautiful drawing to color in!
    I was having a little ptsd episode today. I was thinking of leaving work early because of it. Then I realized I had some colored pencils in my desk and could print out your drawing to color. It has saved my workday even though coloring seems like it would be counter-productive. (The alternative would have been going home and not getting any work done.) Thank you!

  48. This is amazing! I love all the different takes with the color. I can’t wait for the whole book! I work in a battered women’s shelter, would it be okay to make copies for them? I think this really speaks to what the women go through. We are trying to do more creative activities with the women and they really enjoy the adult coloring. Thank you!

    (Of course! Anything I share here can be printed and used non-commercially. 🙂 Thanks! ~ Jenny)

  49. Hey Jenny, thank you for your beautiful art. Both words and pictures. I pre-ordered your book for myself and my niece, can’t wait. Your posts are so important, and the one about the swings the other day was especially good. I read all of the replies like I usually do, and although a lot of them were sad, it just shows how much you help and bring those of us together that are struggling. Anyway, did you know there’s a Kickstarter coloring book right now entitled “Lazy-ass cats, a coloring book for adults”? I thought you might want to check it out. ;D

  50. I just bought a couple of color-by-number books for those days when picking which color to use is too hard.

    Only slightly relevant observations: a) Coloring to relax, be calm, be mindful, dissociate, etc. is very popular. b) Color-by-number books make it easier for some of us to achieve the desired result. c) Coloring book sections in most stores now contain hundreds of different books. d) It’s often necessary to go through the entire section to find one or two that are color-by-number. e) I just increased the level of stress I need to relieve by coloring.

    OK, now I can go color. 😉

  51. I embiggened this simply wonderful drawing/artwork/view into the soul…and THANK YOU!!

  52. So I was looking through your drawings and I’d like to get a tattoo of one or some or all of them. Is this allowed? Will you sue my skin? (please don’t sue my skin)

  53. So fun to see everyone’s interpretation! Love you, Jennie Lawson! /Users/kristin/Desktop/FullSizeRender.jpg

  54. I dashed out and got a book, pencils and very fine tip pens. I have enjoyed the book the moment i started and then my husband wanted a go. And then our son. So now we all have out own books pens and pencils and individual cases so we don’t get mixed up and use each others. OCD. I take them everywhere so if i have to sit and wait the anxious feeling doesn’t creep in so much as my brain is thinking…do not go over the line …do not go over the line….do not go over the line…fantastic distraction. Jenny please come out with a book with your own designs your gifted and we need to destress with out jenny books. I think i speak on behalf of everyone here that it is needed. Amen to that!

  55. Thank you Jenny! Wow I love your work. SO much. I’m not a big colour-inner but I do love letting my eyes wander around your fantastically intricate detailing. My youngest however is a HUGE colourer and I just got him a mandala book, but I will be printing this one off for him to do for the fridge! xxx

  56. Hi, Jenny – I’m still loving this, so I’m gonna trust my first reaction. Which was I want this as a tattoo. I don’t want to steal your art, so would it be okay with you if I modify this a little to put on my skin?

    (Of course! – Jenny)

  57. Can I ask how you upload them to look so nice? Do you just scan it? Do you have to use something like photoshop to clean it up? I have some drawing that I’d love to put online, but they never look as nice when I scan them. Thanks!

    PS Thank you so much for sharing these. 🙂 They are lovely and I can’t wait to get your book!! <3

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