By Wren Hagge
CBS (CHICAGO) — Grab a box of crayons because today is National Coloring Book Day! Here Chicago-based artist Melina Stock chats with CBS 2 about adults discovering the joys and benefits of coloring books.

How did coloring books become a ‘thing’ for adults?

Research has shown that making art has a positive impact on adults, most notably by reducing stress levels. Sitting down with a coloring book is a great way to clear your head and forget the things you’re worried about. Coloring helps people be in the present moment—they can get lost in it.

Melina Stock

Artist Melina Stock

What do you tell people who say coloring books are just for kids?

I think being creative is an essential part of being a human—to feel capable of making things that are beautiful. The sense of pride and accomplishment a person experiences when creating something is beneficial to an over-all sense of wellbeing. And to just have time to spend doing things that are just for pleasure.

What’s the difference between a kid versus adult coloring book?

To be honest, there is no difference in what I draw for an adult versus a child. I think children tend to be drawn to popular cartoon characters, but many children enjoy [my book] as much as they would any coloring book. In fact, [my] coloring book was created in part for four young sisters, one of whom recently passed away unexpectedly. Their mother reports they have been using the book as a way to reflect on their loss and process their feelings.


Why do adults enjoy coloring books?

I think this most recent boom in popularity is piggybacking on our general increased awareness of daily stress, mental health, and activities that improve well-being, such as yoga, meditation, etc.

How should people celebrate National Coloring Book Day?

People should set aside time to be creative. I think National Coloring Book Day is another opportunity to remember people need to have time to do things that are relaxing and just for enjoyment.

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