NEOSHO, Mo. – While most college students are just starting to come of age at age 18, Madison Brown is different.
The 2019 homeschool graduate already has her own independent design company, a published coloring book, and a book imprint with dreams of more titles.
Earlier this year, Brown used the knowledge she gained from her Associate’s Degree in Graphic Design from Crowder College and combined it with research and skills to complete “Bloom: A Coloring Book for Industrious Women.” .
The book, created entirely on Brown’s iPad Pro using an Apple Pencil and the ProCreate app, features more than two dozen of his original creations.
Each page highlights a different career, with a woman at the center. While the women pictured are beautiful, Brown’s designs also show the strength needed to get the job done.
For example, one page highlights a policewoman, while another gives the image of an astronaut. Other careers mentioned include a paleontologist, baker, chemist, filmmaker, and dairy farmer.
“I hope it brings fun and fun,” Brown said. “I also hope that people who see it are inspired to create their own things, just as I was inspired to dream and do things.”
How it started
Brown, daughter of Lynette and Charlie Brown, said she has always been interested in art. Creating art, using everything from charcoal to pencil to watercolors, has always been a part of her life.
As she graduated from high school, Brown took her creativity to the next level by simultaneously pursuing an Associate’s Degree in Fine Arts.
After taking a graphic design class, Brown decided to change direction. The change allowed her to develop her own brand and begin to accept work as a freelance illustrator and designer.
While researching potential career paths, Brown discovered an artist who has self-published a coloring book.
With the idea in hand, Brown began to dream of his own book. Initially, she wanted to pursue a sci-fi style theme, mixing mechanical / industrial themes with floral elements.
As she finished her first image – an astronaut surrounded by flowers, she began to consider changing her theme to encompass women at work.
“I liked how they were very feminine, but still very strong,” Brown said of the new models. “I was able to capture the soft elements (of flowers), but also the strong elements of their industrious spirit.”
While Brown said she was a self-taught artist, lessons in anatomy and clothing came into play, as she envisioned different poses for women and what uniforms would look like on their bodies.
“I hope people see the different jobs featured throughout the book and that it inspires them to pursue their own goals,” Brown said. “If a little girl is looking at it, I hope she is encouraged and knows that she can do what interests her, what she has a passion for (in life).”
She also learned to use patterns and other patterns, as well as typography for backgrounds.
“I learned a lot about lines and how lines can point the eye in different directions around coloring pages,” Brown said.
Brown published her book under the name Sarah Madison Designs and Development. Her goal is to keep looking for work under this nickname.
“I hope this will encourage people not only to dream and imagine something, but to work on it,” Brown said. “Get out there, take steps towards what you want to do. Move towards your goals, work hard for them, don’t just dream of them.
As she promotes her coloring book, Brown continues to think about her next move. She plans to expand her studies to include a degree in business or marketing. She is also taking advantage of this fall to broaden her skills as an artist.
“I’m still working on creating art in general, whether it’s painting or drawing,” Brown said. “I always draw in my notebook, I scribble with a ballpoint pen. Many of my larger pieces are watercolors.
A degree in film and television could also be on the horizon. Brown also enjoys writing novels for young adults and would potentially like to extend these skills to the entertainment industry.