Health

Coloring Page Designed to Help You Deal With Painful Current Events

July 12th 2016

By:
Tricia Tongco

Current events have been especially painful and traumatic over the last few weeks. Artist and educator Andrea Pippins has offered a unique way to help you deal with the resulting stress and anxiety: coloring.

Pippins posted a free coloring page titled "Freedom" on her website days after Anton Sterling died in a police shooting, accompanied by a statement that said:

"There's so much ugliness going on in the world. How do we process it all without going mad?"

In an email interview with ATTN:, Pippins explained why she felt compelled to create the coloring sheet:

"With all the heavy news over the last two weeks, I was really feeling like I needed to do something and thinking, 'How could I use in my voice as an artist to help others during this time?' I began asking myself questions like, 'What can I do? What do I believe in?' And [I] wondered if it would benefit others to do the same. So I created the sheet as a way to help people, especially kids, process what's happening around them."

Pippin decided to include the same questions, especially positive ones, "to empower and to inspire discussion." She originally made it for children, then realized that it could also help adults process injustice in the world:

"I really hope people feel relaxed and inspired while working on the sheet. Taking a break from watching the news or social media and just writing or coloring to generate positive thoughts and ideas, I believe, is always helpful."

This isn't Pippins' first foray into thought-provoking coloring designs. In 2015, she published an all-ages coloring book "I Love My Hair: A Coloring Book of Braids, Coils, and Doodle Dos," a visual celebration of diversity in women's hairstyles, from braids to dreads.

I Heart My Hair coloring book

The adult coloring book craze may seem like an empty fad, but coloring can have a positive effect on people who do it.

“I recommend it as a relaxation technique," psychologist Antoni Martínez told The Huffington Post. “We can use it to enter into a more creative, freer state. I recommend it in a quiet environment, even with chill music. Let the color and the lines flow.”

Pippins acknowledged the power of coloring. "I do see coloring as therapeutic. It's an opportunity to be creative and just be. With our fast-paced world, sometimes we don't make time to just be, and coloring allows for that," she said.

Download the coloring sheet "Freedom" here.