It’s not your average alphabet coloring book.
Sure, there are the usual fun letters: “B is for baking bread.” “G is for garbanzo beans.” “K is for kindness.”
But many of them are a bit, well, off. “A is for ambulance.” “E is for essential businesses.” “T is for toilet paper.”
The clue comes from the book’s title: “Q is for Quarantine.”
What might be the world’s first children’s coronavirus book was created by Westport’s own Julia Gang.
A 2007 graduate of Staples High School, with a degree in interdisciplinary arts from Northwestern University, she’s made a career of visual storytelling. Her first job was designing book covers. She now designs full time for a music non-profit, and does illustration, art direction, photography, calligraphy, sculpture and papier-mâché on the side.
Her “office” right now is in her old childhood bedroom, at her parents’ home.
Her book began as she drew a series of postcards, to stay connected with family and friends.
It soon evolved into its current form. Julia wanted to keep creative juices flowing — her own, and others’ — while providing a bit of humor, entertainment and information too. (There’s a list of how-to-stay-busy and how-to-help resources at the end.)
Nowadays, coloring books are not just for kids. They can be calming for older folks too. So in true we’re-all-in-this-together fashion, Julia shared it — free! — on the internet. (Click here to download and print out.)
Now she’s on to her next projects: children’s books, and more.
“I’m grateful to have a profession where I can continue to work, while sheltering in place,” Julia says.
Meanwhile, kids (and adults) everywhere have her “P is for puzzles,” “Z is for zoo livestreams” — and of course “Q is for Quarantine” — to keep them busy.
(To learn more about Julia Gang, click here for her website. Hat tip: Joni Usdan)