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Artist Creates Unique Colouring Book

Kara-Lyn Loewen has a keen eye, a steady hand and a generous spirit.  She has put these special traits to good use in creating a beautiful adult colouring book called “Designs” and making it available to the public.

The self-published book was released in September and proved so popular that it is already going through its second printing. What makes the colouring book unique is that each design is hand-drawn by Kara-Lyn, free-hand using nothing but a black-ink pen.

“I really like drawing, it makes me more relaxed. It de-stresses me,” she says.

Kara-Lyn has been drawing since she was a child and she has given her artwork away as gifts for years. She says the designs just come to her as she is drawing.

Angelika Dawson is a colouring book enthusiast. She purchased a copy of “Designs” and says it is completely different than those which are mass-produced.

“I discovered that when I started using Kara-Lyn’s book, it had the same calming, meditative effect on me that commercially produced books have. That is, until I realized that her designs are not 100% symmetrical,” she says.

Angelika explains that this aspect of Kara-Lyn’s designs means the person colouring must make choices because one cannot simply do the same thing on one side that one does on the other.

“It makes it mindful colouring, rather than mindless. I like that much better,” she says.

Kara-Lyn’s mother, Lois, says that although her daughter lives with Down Syndrome, she has always been high-functioning. In some ways, this has made Kara-Lyn’s life difficult because people make assumptions about her.

“People often talk “down” to her, as if she is a child, when she’s perfectly capable of conversing with you as an adult,” Lois says. “It’s hard as a parent to see your child struggle to find friends but she finally has good people in her life who appreciate her intelligence and her gifts.”

Watching Kara-Lyn draw is astonishing. She draws perfectly straight lines without the aid of a ruler and the patterns emerge effortlessly onto the page. She is always experimenting with new designs and her latest work includes patterns that are mirror images of each other with the blank space in between often taking on a meaningful shape like a vase or an urn. She loves trying new things.

“I like learning, it’s my favourite hobby,” she says with a big smile. “I’m always looking for new challenges.”

Kara-Lyn hopes that her colouring books will also help others to relax and take their minds off the stresses of life.  She is selling the books for $10 each and is planning on donating a portion of her proceeds to Communitas Supportive Care Society.

To order your copy of "Designs", contact the Loewen family at artlois@shaw.ca.