Department of Fine and Performing Arts

Desirae A. Blake

Black Girl Who Crafts: the Coloring Book

Thesis Statement

For my senior exhibition, I decided to create my very own coloring book. Coloring books have always played an important role in my life. When I was younger I would color for hours, for me, that was my escape. I was free to express myself to draw and color however I wanted. I didn’t have to color in the lines or conform to the norms of the
world. For me, coloring books was my own little world, even if the book already had a story, like Alladin, I would still make up my own stories as I would color in them. Even now, as a 24-year college student, I still color in coloring books.

I also find coloring to be relaxing, engaging, and not to mention, fun. Coloring helps to ease any tension or stress I may be facing. So, for the theme of my coloring book, I decided to go with the theme of Kawaii. Within Japan, Kawaii is considered “the culture of cuteness.” It presents humans and non-humans items as childlike, shy, vulnerable and charming. I chose this theme because I admire Asian culture and I believe this theme works well with my style of art because my art is playful and childlike.

As you review my coloring book, I hope you are engaged and have fun with the images I selected to draw. I hope you feel free and color as you see fit and create your own story of what is going on within these pages. You will be able to color the Kawaii pictures and complete the fun activities. You will also be able to know a little more about me and how my imagination works. I am still a kid at heart and my art reflects with but with a Kawaii twist to it.

  • I consider my artwork to be free, engaging, and playful. As we grow in age, we are told to “grow up” and “act our age”, but truth be told I don’t want to grow up. When children view the world they search for hope, freedom and confidence. My goal is to inspire this as an artist. My art isn’t about being serious or feeling contained but instead I want the viewer of my art to feel excited, inspired and to have fun! I believe there is a kid in everyone, and that kid never truly goes away. That kid is like a game of hide and
    seek, they’re hiding waiting for the right time to come out. My artwork is meant to bring out the kid in all of us. I want my viewer to remember that kid who had wild imaginations and who believed they could do anything. I create my art by using numerous methods such as drawing, Adobe Illustrator, or creating fun activities for everyone to do. I want my art to bring people together and remind them to be young and have fun, especially during these hard times.