There's something very immediate and compelling about a book whose pages reach the reader in exactly the form they left the author. "Create & Colour Scotland: Art, Design, Colouring" by Yvette Walker is such a book. As the author writes, literally, in her introduction, "This book is packed full of art and design activities with a very Scottish flair. It shows you how to design your own tartan, reinvent a Paisley pattern or experiment with paper weaving. Through drawing you can find out about Charles Rennie Mackintosh, create your own version of The Monarch of the Glen, draw a simple version of a Westie and lots more. All the activities have been broken down into easy steps to make the learning fun. This book is for all ages as anyone can draw. Enjoy!!"
We strongly suspect that many readers - though in this case "users" might be a better expression - will gain a great deal of enjoyment from this book. The review copy we were sent has attracted considerable attention here since it arrived, and it seems likely that there will be competition between our five-year-old grandson and his mother over who who first gets to apply a pencil or crayon to it once the last word of this review is written.
What is particularly nice is the wide range of different activities, as well as their strongly Scottish flavour. The author's introduction only covers part of what is on offer between the covers of this book. How do you like the idea of colouring in the graffiti on Kelburn Castle in Ayrshire? Or producing a fingerprint Loch Ness Monster? Or designing packaging for a new jam from Dundee? Or exploring the patterns in the fur of a Scottish wildcat? Or following in the footsteps of the Scottish Colourists? Or drawing the portraits of some famous Scots? Or designing your own castle? Or... well you get the idea, there's a lot more here too. It doesn't really matter whether you pick up this book because you find drawing and colouring relaxing or therapeutic, or whether you want to introduce an enthusiastic child to some of the Scottish ideas and themes it covers. Either way you'll find a great deal here that's enjoyable and inspiring. Now, who's first?