Ayat El Mowaled founded Craft Your Dreams, her first colouring book, right after giving birth to her firstborn, after sketching hundreds of drawings during her pregnancy.
Having a wild imagination is a trait that society reserves for children. Only at that age can you engage your senses and satisfy your curiosity in endless activities, so you can grow wiser and understand the world. There seems to be a point, however, after which society stops expecting you to indulge in activities to keep your mind relaxed and imagination going.
In the last few months of her pregnancy, artist Ayat El Mowaled, founder of colouring book Craft Your Dreams, got to a point where she could only lay on her side, not moving at all. To keep herself entertained, and due to her background as an applied arts graduate, she began drawing until she put together a massive collection of drawings. After she gave birth to her firstborn, Yehya, in 2014, she compiled a collection of her drawings in an adult colouring book. All little monsters and robots eating ice cream, the book is seriously cool - and kind of reminiscent of a cartoon-esque acid trip. "My pregnancy gave me time to draw and rediscover things about myself. I wanted others, especially those who can't draw, to be able to get a similar experience," El Mowaled explains.Craft Your Dreams was well received on social media, and became an instant success. This encouraged El Mowaled to continue releasing her drawings in colouring books, reaching 10 volumes so far. "After my books were met with success online, I started offering them at Kelma 3araby and Kotob Khan bookstores," El Mowaled tells us.
According to many studies, colouring books help adults release the stress of their daily lives. "Colouring in colouring books is of therapeutic nature, which is mostly why I want more people to practice it."