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Book of the Week: A Pick by Forrest Soper

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Forrest Soper Forrest Soper selects The Martin Parr Coloring Book! by Martin Parr as Book of the Week.
The Martin Parr Coloring Book!
By Martin Parr Aperture, 2017.
Forrest Soper selects The Martin Parr Coloring Book!  by Martin Parr from Aperture as Book of the Week.

“Coloring looks very simple, but, boy, to do it well, it’s very difficult — like photography, it looks so simple but it’s very tough.” — Martin Parr

"I’ve always thought that the coloring book was an under-rated form of expression. All art, regardless of medium, is communicative and cannot exist in a vacuum. As a result, I view all works of art as a conversation between the creator and the viewer. Generally speaking, the more impactful or insightful the conversation is, the more powerful the work of art. Some conversations only speak to a specific audience or demographic, but coloring books have a beautiful unimposing simplicity that allows them to communicate with the young and the old alike.

Enter The Martin Parr Coloring Book!, the latest publication from the prolific photographer. At this point, Parr needs no introduction, as he has quickly become one of the most popular contemporary photographers of this generation. His often-humorous documentations of bizarre slices of culture have amused and fascinated individuals for decades. Now, thanks to the work of artist and book lover, Jane Mount, almost 50 of Parr’s classic images can be engaged with, in coloring book form!

When many people think of a coloring book, they think of something juvenile. Coloring books, to many, are a relatively inexpensive tool used to occupy the youth. However, in recent years, designers have worked diligently to make coloring books that can be enjoyed by adults. Until recently, my favorite ‘adult coloring book’ was Chuck Palahniuk’s Bait: Off-Color Stories for You to Color, an illustrated collection of Palahniuk’s macabre and bizarre short stories. Now, Parr’s publication is unquestionably my new favorite go-to coloring book.

This publication is so well designed, that you can color on every single page, including the covers. Children will be amused by coloring in bizarre scenes such as a dog with sunglasses, or piles of spam surrounded by beautiful flowers. Adults will gain a deeper understanding of Parr’s composition and humor, as they are forced to spend longer with each image as they take the time to color in every shape.

This is a beautifully designed coloring book. The illustrations range from very simple outlines to drawings with incredible amounts of detail. Coloring enthusiasts of all levels will be able to find pages that match their skill set. If that was not enough, the book ends with four pages of Martin Parr stickers (one for each of the images found in the book.)

At the end of the day, The Martin Parr Coloring Book! is a book that has the potential to speak to a wide audience. This publication contains every charming aspect of a Parr photobook, but it has the added benefit of being engaging and fun. At the very least, this publication should not be overlooked when looking at the catalog of Parr monographs and is essential for any Martin Parr fan." — Forrest Soper

Purchase Book

The Martin Parr Coloring Book! By Martin Parr Aperture, 2017

The Martin Parr Coloring Book! By Martin Parr Aperture, 2017.

Forrest Soper is a photographer and artist based out of Santa Fe, New Mexico. A graduate of the Santa Fe University of Art and Design, he also has previously worked at Bostick & Sullivan. Forrest is the Editor of photo-eye Blog.