Living away from home for two years forced Hannah Dueck to realize how lucky she is to be from the Okanagan.
Upon returning to Canada after a lengthy stay in England, the Penticton-based writer and artist took matters into her own hands and created a coloring book that showcases all that the Okanagan has to offer.
Today she can call herself a published author.
Beautiful Okanagan, a book featuring 23 different scenes from across the valley, was released on September 9th.
From Skaha Bluffs to Kelowna Sails, Dueck says the coloring book will appeal to both locals and tourists.
“For some people, it will remind them of all the memories they made here,” the artist explained. “But for others, they’re going to discover some of the things they didn’t even know were in the Okanagan.”
Dueck, a graduate of Penticton Secondary, says the book was inspired by growing up in a family of artists while living in one of the country’s most scenic regions.
Okanagan Publishing officials say coloring books have become a global trend, with the art form among the best ways for middle-aged adults to find quiet time alone and engage in an interactive activity.
“Many women in their 30s to 60s are now buying adult coloring books to indulge in a pastime and relax,” Dueck said. “A lot of people don’t try art when they’re older, so I think coloring books are great because they have enough structure where you don’t have to be an artist.”
However, the new release aims to appeal to people of all ages, not just those looking to unwind after a long day at work.
Described as rich and complex with color patterns, the Okanagan publishing house says the coloring book is perfect for people of all ages as well as families.
“My husband and I lived in England for two years and it was beautiful there, but we thought a lot about where we came from,” recalls Dueck. “We told people there were lakes, ski slopes and vineyards.”
People who get their hands on the book can color in scenes from mainly Kelowna and Penticton, but also Vernon and Oliver.
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book will go to Mamas for Mamas, a Kelowna-based organization that supports mothers and carers in crisis.
Dueck’s book is available from Davison Orchards, the Kelowna Visitor Centre, the West Kelowna Visitor Center and Amazon.