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Fantastic Collections: A Coloring Book of Amazing Things Real and Imagined (Fantastic Cities) Paperback – 26 Jul 2016

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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  • Fantastic Collections: A Coloring Book of Amazing Things Real and Imagined (Fantastic Cities)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 60 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books; 01 edition (26 July 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1452153248
  • ISBN-13: 978-1452153247
  • Product Dimensions: 28.9 x 0.6 x 29.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 558,455 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"If you love the process of creating art...these books will soothe your soul"
-Sweety High

About the Author

Steve McDonald doesn't just draw the cities of the world. A lifelong traveler since his family moved to the Middle East in 1979, he's lived in Saudi Arabia, Italy, India and Indonesia, visited dozens of other countries, and spent the better part of two decades travelling his native Canada from coast to coast via car, bus, helicopter, canoe, ship and on foot. Everywhere he goes he soaks up the local colour, the architecture, and, most of all, the lines. Steve's process includes observing, sketching on-site and taking photos for reference in the studio, as well as working from many noted photographers' material. He lays down initial groundwork lines in pencil or on a tablet and then gets busy with the details. Although he works in many media, including acrylics, watercolours, and coloured dyes, his favourite is simple pen and ink. When he's not knee-deep in the intricate details of his drawings, Steve is likely surfing (most recently in the waves off the coast of Bali, where he lived for two years with his family) or cross-country skiing in the snowdrifts of rural Ontario, which he currently calls home. A graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design, Steve's work has been showcased in many gallery exhibitions, television documentaries and various publications, and can be found in many private homes and corporate collections worldwide. You can also find it online at artbysteve.squarespace.com.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Fantastic Collections by Steve McDonald is larger than most colouring books on the market at 30cm x 30cm. It has a matt card cover illustrated on the front with a collection of lanterns, and a mandala type image of sweet jars on the back. On opening the book there is the title page with the printing details on the back then the rest are all colouring pages which makes a nice change from all the 'therapy' books that tell you page after page of the benefits of colouring only they just feel like a waste of colourable paper and are there simply to pad out the book. There's none of that here.

It is both glue and sewn bound, although there are no two-page spreads where colouring into the gutter may be a problem. The paper is bright white and thick. This will take water-based markers and fineliners as well as pencils. It would also be a great book to use paints in, just go easy on the water. The line work is crisp black lines and ranges from heavy to fine which I think work well with this particular book. This isn't one for subtle shading and gentle colours. Bold is best here.

This is definitely a book to create art with as opposed to "just colouring in." Some of the subject matters are strange choices; fancy colouring a page of chainsaws or cleaning products? Not subjects you usually see in colouring books. It is an unusual book and some of the illustrations may not appeal as much as others. You could just colour them in realistically but I think where this book will excel is in breaking down the images into shapes and just going wild with colour and having a lot of fun doing it, but that is just my opinion of how I see this book, you may see it simply as a book of objects to colour and be happy colouring it that way.
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Format: Paperback
Steve McDonald has produced two other colouring books on Structures and Cities which I have and love. This is totally different and would suit any person who loved colouring. The book is as it says Collections. The front cover picture is in the book along with full pages of: perfume bottles, hot air balloons, fish, kitchen items, tools etc etc. This book also offers intricate mandelas of the some of the pictures which are amazing. Another masterpiece that will give me hours of colouring fun. It has intricate and 'bigger' colouring images to offer which I find useful as I do not always want to colour harder pieces. Large size book, fab paper that does not show through felts, fineliners etc but cannot handle markers. HIGHLY RECOMMEND and well done Steve...again!!!!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars 22 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 58 Pages of Wonderful Designs of a wide variety of collections – printed on both sides of heavyweight page 26 July 2016
By iiiireader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I own both of Steve McDonald's first two coloring books and have enjoyed coloring in them. I immediately pre-ordered “Fantastic Collections” as soon as I saw it was available. The groupings of collections are quite interesting. Some things, such as oil cans, toy horses, locks, and even typewriters are familiar to me. Others are definitely new, such as Japanese cleaning supplies and chainsaws.

Most of the designs are presented straight-forward but a few are also interpreted into mandala style format and those become beautiful abstract designs that will be a lot of fun to color.

This is what I found while coloring in this book and testing the paper with my coloring medium. I will provide a list of the coloring medium I used for tests and which I use for coloring as well. You will find the list in the comments section below.

58 Pages of Designs based on a wide variety of Collectibles

Printed on both sides of white heavyweight, smooth, non-perforated paper

Sewn Binding

Designs do not merge into binding area

Book can be opened to a flat position

Alcohol-based markers bleed through page. Using these will ruin the design on the back of the page.

Water-based markers, gel pens, and India ink artist pens do not bleed through or leave color shadows on back on page. Gel pens required additional drying time.

Coloring pencils work well with this paper. I used both oil and wax based pencils for good pigment, layering multiple colors and blending using a pencil style blending stick.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes! Another wonderful FANTASTIC coloring book ... 26 July 2016
By M. Sweeney - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Steve McDonald has another great follow-on to his Fantastic Cities: A Coloring Book of Amazing Places Real and Imagined and Fantastic Structures: A Coloring Book of Amazing Buildings Real and Imagined with this selection of line drawings of collections of interesting objects. Much like his drawings of architectural scenes these too are full of detail yet adaptable to a wide range of coloring styles, from the abstract or fanciful to more realistic depictions.. It continues the same format – 60 slightly over-sized pages (not quite 12 inches square) on heavier weight paper for less chance of bleed-through from markers. (You will probably be OK with the double-sided pages unless you use a **lot** of layers of markers, or colored sharpies.) The drawings can be colored with colored pencils or broad pointed felt pens, and again, they lend themselves to adding any level of detail and texture one wants to drill down to. Feel like adding in the sparkles and stripes of the candy in jars, reflections in the wall of beer bottles, or a dimly-lit scene? – go for it; the drawings invite your personal touch here. Or enjoy them as color-field designs and block in your color schemes. Some of them would do well with a Wayne Thiebaud touch - the candy, the rows of glasses, the toy ray guns. There are a few drawings with a lot of depth of field - the kitchen for example - but most are fairly flat compositions. Touches of whimsy appear in many - the cellphones include an old brick-type phone; a shelves of chain-saws (a surprisingly wonderful drawing).

Matryoshka Dolls
Balinese Koi (photo attached)
Candy Jars Mandala
Candy Jars
Lock Mandala
The Lock Collection of James A. Rees (1913-2009)
Camping Gear
Japanese Cleaning Supplies
Chainsaws (photo attached)
Art Frames Mandala
Art Frames
Cassette Tapes
Butterflies Mandala
Toy Robots Mandala
Toy Robots
Roxana's Stuffed Animals
Asha's Buttons
Natalia's Toy Horses
Plastic Dinosaurs
Alexander's Toy Cars
Oil Tins
Moroccan Lamps
Chinese Lanterns
Cameras Mandala
Fruit Market
Fishing Tackle
Ray Guns
Ray Gun Mandala
Clocks Mandala
Remote Controller Mandala
Remote Controllers
Antique Glass Bottles
Namina;s Jewels
Bottle Collection Mandala
Bottle Collection
Dollhouse Kitchen
Kitchen Utensils
Typewriters Mandala
Military Medals
Mobile Phones (photo attached)
Beauty Supplies
Colored Pencils

Need more Steve McDonald?
Now Available: Fantastic Cities 2017 Wall Calendar
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Steve McDonald does it again! 26 July 2016
By K. Howard - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have Mr. McDonald's first two coloring books, Fantastic Cities and Fantastic Structures, so I had to pre-order this one as soon as I saw it was coming out. This time we have collections instead of buildings and cities, and what varied collections they are! I knew I had to have this book as soon as I saw the Russian nesting dolls. There are also butterflies, jars of candy, sunglasses, antique cameras, fishing lures, pencils, toiletries, koi fish and many more unique collections. There is also a good selection of his beautiful mandalas. Pages are printed on both sides, but the paper quality is very good, nice and bright white. And nothing goes to the binding, which makes a big difference to me. The size of the big is consistent with his prior books.

While his other books were gorgeous, I'm glad to see his talents aren't just for structures or places. Apparently this man is talented no matter what he draws! Please keep them coming, Mr. McDonald!
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars usually a huge disappointment for me as I typically use markers 14 Nov. 2016
By Back2Future - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Pleasantly surprised! When I ordered this book, I did not realize that the images were printed on both sides of the page, usually a huge disappointment for me as I typically use markers, but the high quality of paper prevented any bleeding, even when I tried. A few of the designs were not interesting to me, but I'm really looking forward to coloring the other 85-90% of the pages!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Original drawings of all types of collections 26 July 2016
By Carolyn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I pre-ordered this book a coupe months ago, and have been anxiously awaiting it's arrival. It did not disappoint. Highly original drawings of all sorts of collections. I mean interesting stuff, too. Everything from chainsaws to butterflies, to lamps, signs, bottles, nesting dolls, and more. I will have much fun coloring these.
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