unspecifiedBy Grace Huseth

Coloring books for adults have become incredibly popular, especially for people seeking some artful stress release.

A group of local artists known as ColorATL have created their own coloring book featuring everything from Atlanta icons and landmarks to modern designs.

Co-founders Willian Massey and Amber Guinn saw that the coloring craze had the potential to bring creative relief to places like cancer centers, health and hospice homes, transitional facilities and homeless shelters.

“Every day we see the power of art shift the atmosphere of the place we walk into,” Guinn said. “Old, hardened men become kids again, cancer patients get their mind off their condition even if it is for a few hours and our friends without homes regain a since of dignity.”

Massey, whose work appears along the Atlanta BeltLine, has built strong relationships with artist from all over the city. He reached out to his fellow artist friends who eagerly jumped on board the idea to create a coloring book. Local artists include Sanithna Phansavanh, Peter Ferrari, Sam Parker, Maxim Beeching, Brandon Sadler, Stephanie Mma, Kyle Brooks, Lela Brunet and Connor Dwyer, who created the logo.

“We all feel in a way that we have a special connection to the therapeutic benefits of creative activity,” Guinn said. “Each artist shares how art has art affected them in their artist blurb in the book. I think art crosses all borders to connect and help heal all of us.”

As an illustrator, Guinn said that creating pictures is the most effective way to tell a story. Guinn is an illustrator, designer and creative director at The Joy Market, a nonprofit children book publishing company. With her artistic and publishing mind, ColorATL has plans for prospering while promoting the community.

ColorATL Volume 1 will retail for $20 and will be released this fall online and at local retailers like Sam Flax. One-hundred percent of proceeds will support art programs in health facilities and social impact organizations around Atlanta.  Of the nearly 4,000 printed, half will be for sale to the public and the rest donated using a 1- to-1 model: for every coloring book purchased, Color ATL will personally deliver a book to those in need.

For more about the project, visit facebook.com/colorATL.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.