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  • jennyhutchinsonart

My first friend was my crayon box. My mother says "from the moment I could grasp a crayon" I have been creating and that is pretty much what I remember too. I remember, in the glimpses that I can, sitting at special small coloring table at my Nana Kay's house as a toddler. I named the colors before I could read their crayon assigned names, and would eagerly day dream by mixing the colors together and in different ways. My small world was that much more enchanting thanks to coloring.

A garden with bird feeder
Nana Kay's Garden

My early love for coloring grew along with a budding interest in plant life fostered by my loved ones. Nana Kay's house had what I deemed the most beautiful garden full of Petunias, Snapdragons, Marigolds, Salvia, and planted special for me, some pink Begonias. We visited my grandparents where my grandmother Pricilla had flowers so big they reached the eave of their single story home; standing tall in contrast to their hills of vegetables. She often drove around with a shovel in her car just incase she came across an interesting plant that may add to her collection.

Each Spring my mother brought me along to choose plants for potting, sharing how to tell which plants where healthy. My grandparents Loretta and Wayne had geraniums leading up their driveway and a vegetable gardens where I would pick out tomatoes or cucumbers for our salads. Both my mother and all my grandparents had a knack for growing Christmas Cactus- these very same plants are still blooming today.

This coloring book is something that represents many of the things that led me to become artist; and what better way to share my own journey and love for color than to have a book to share with others to explore on their own.

To create the coloring book, you would think that picking out sketches and putting them together in a book would be a simple endeavor, we certainly did at first. As it turns out, having a lot of choices means actually making one is a little harder to do.

I've been creating floral imagery for years, naturally I assumed that selecting from them would be a cinch. Well, a month went by and I was STILL working out what I was happy with, redrawing some, adding to others. I wanted to keep the original form as true as possible, while also adding some line and detail to make it more interesting to work with. With the imagery finally settled, it was time for a decision on materials.

For many more weeks Ben and I obsessed over paper samples (apparently there IS a difference between the paper used for #12 cover page and #12 card stock and #12 text), ruminated over the formatting and page order, and created other pages that I had not considered before, like the title page and introduction. When it was all done, and ready to send off to printing, I started having doubts. Was creating this book really worth it? Will it represent my work well, but also be welcoming for someone to actually... color or paint with it? I was not going to be certain until they were in my hands, so after 3 or 4 rounds of proof approvals, off they went to print.

When the books finally arrived, I opened up the box, and felt such relief. It was done, they were beautiful, and I am excited to share them with others.


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