By: Suzy Toronto
Publisher: Fox Chapel Publishing
Publication Date: May 2016
Reviewed by: Lynette Latzko
Review Date: May 15, 2017
Light & Laughter by Suzy Toronto is a coloring book with a positive message, “Pretending to be a normal person day after day is exhausting!” and encourages colorists to seize the day, color outside the lines and “...embrace the wonderful, wacky women we truly are, and live a life worth coloring.”
This softcover book contains thirty-two pages of coloring fun depicting various sizes of both large and intricate designs, bold, whimsical characters, lots of flowers and women with wild, wacky hair. Each image also contains a playful, inspirational quote such as “Life is short. Go for the cupcakes!” and “Some of us were just born with glitter in our veins.” The Light & Laughter book is approximately 8”x10” in size, printed on archival and eco-friendly paper that contains images printed on a single side, and is perforated for easy removal. The back of each coloring page includes a fun quote like “Don’t be afraid to be a fruit loop in a world full of bran,” that provides even more laughter and encouragement to colorists while they brighten their pages.
The coloring book has several sample pages colored by the author herself in her favorite medium, watercolors, as well as pages completed by other women using colored pencils, markers and gel pens. This reviewer's sample provided above was colored using a combination of gel pens, colored pencils and Stabilo 88 point pens. Suzy Toronto also includes other extra sections in this coloring book discussing her own personal coloring style and provides a bit of creative coloring encouragement. Finally, technical information for serious colorists who want to learn about the proper use of colors by providing a color wheel with discussion about primary, secondary and tertiary colors, completes the extra added pages in this coloring book.
Light & Laughter has also received DO Magazine’s “Fair Trade Seal of Approval.” Having this seal of approval ensures that coloring consumers can buy Light & Laughter and know that the artwork is of quality, and the author was properly compensated for her creations.
Suzy Toronto’s coloring book is packed full of fun, silly images that will be best enjoyed using colored pencils, sharpened crayons, gel pens and thin markers since the images can be a bit small and intricate at times. The paper has a smooth texture allowing color to lay down and blend easily and is of medium thickness, therefore, using a wet medium such as large markers (copics, sharpies, etc.,) or watercolors may bleed through, so it is best to remove the image from the book or test a small area before proceeding with coloring an entire page. There are numerous quotes and images that will speak to you personally regardless of your age, some will make you laugh and others will inspire you to spend hours filling your book with color. While this book does include a small amount of other fun to color images such as cupcakes and boots, the overall theme contains pages with a plethora of ribbons, doodles, flowers and ladies with crazy hair. This may be an issue for some colorists who crave a wide variety of images to challenge their coloring skills. However, this book can be an excellent “pick me up” when you're feeling down or having a bad day and just want to laugh and feel uplifted by Suzy Toronto’s images of women with zany hair and equally silly quotes.
Quill says: Light & Laughter will brighten your spirits and fill your creative time with hours of coloring fun.