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Harry Potter Magical Artifacts Coloring Book Paperback – June 28, 2016
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Rather than discuss how this is like or different from the books and/or movie series, I will discuss only how I feel about it as an adult coloring book. There are, once again, color image pages at the back of the book in case you wish to stay true to the original colors.
As with the first three books in this series, there is a team of illustrators involved with the designs in this book. It seems like the list is much larger this time and perhaps that is why there is even a less cohesive feel to this book than in the prior three. It is easy to see the differences in design styles and the feel is much more cartoon-like than in the previous books. That may be due, in large part, to the subject matter.
Dealing with the artifacts may lend itself to less realistic style drawing but I think that some of the images might have been improved upon but on the whole, I may fairly pleased with the book. There are some designs that are just a tad more detailed than simple line drawings while there are also many which involve extremely small and intricate elements. These will probably take sharp pointed pencils or ultra-fine nibs to color.
I am pleased that, as with the second and third books, there are less designs with heavy black space. I consider this change from the first book to be a huge improvement and am happy with my design options apart from printing issues (see below.) Once again, they have included glossy pages at the end of the book. I will use them as I did the first time around, as a reminder of the actual colors of the characters and scenes. I don't necessarily use those colors but it is nice to have a reminder handy.
I will provide details on the physical coloring book below but here is a quick overview of what I found:
78 Pages of Harry Potter Designs (not including title page)
Designs are printed on both sides of the page
Paper is heavyweight, cream paper that is slightly rough and non-perforated
Designs merge into binding
Designs spread across two pages
Alcohol based markers bleed through page
Water-based markers leave slight shadows of color on back of page though Tombow brush end markers did the best with most colors not leaving any shadows if applied lightly.
India Ink pens do not bleed through
Gel pens leave a slight shadow on back of page
Coloring Pencils work well with this paper. It is rough enough to provide good tooth to hold the pigment. I got good results with both oil and wax based pencils for coloring, blending, and layering.
The book is printed on both sides of off-white (almost cream) heavyweight and non-perforated paper. Only a few of the designs are printed across two pages and merge into the binding (which is glued rather than sewn.) I did a count and this is what I came up with: 68 one page designs, 7 of which are “wallpaper” repeating patterns; 5 designs spread across two pages but only one of them had elements of importance in the binding area while 2 of them were “wallpaper” style patterns.
In my copy, the images on the two page designs are mixed as far as lining up. Three of the designs do fairly well and two do not.
My first book in this series had a very weird kind of musty odor. I'm happy to say that the final three books in this series, including this one, did not have the offensive odor I encountered in the first book. I hope this is true for everyone who buys this coloring book.
I will use coloring pencils and India ink pens primarily for this book. If I use other mediums, I will do so knowing that it will ruin the design on the back of the page. I do this when I don't really care that much for the backside of the page design. While using markers, I recommend the use of a blotter page (heavy weight paper or several sheets or regular paper) under the working page to keep the ink from seeping further.
One thing I will say that is really great about this book in particular is that it has a bunch of posters at the back that are in full color and are so nice that I framed them and put them in my house. I attached two of the photos below so you can see them.
If you compare this coloring book to other movie/tv/comic themes you will find that it is a major step above in the quality and you get a lot for your money.