About UBC Library’s Digital Colouring Books

Experience history at the tip of your pencil crayons! UBC Library’s Digital Colouring Books aim to inspire creativity and spark curiosity through the art found in our Rare Books and Special Collections. We are joining the New York Academy of Medicine Library and others to offer this unique way to engage with library content.

Featured Book

Kelmscott Chaucer

Designed and issued in a limited edition of 438 copies by William Morris at his Kelmscott press in 1896, the monumental Works of Geoffrey Chaucer was described by the poet William Butler Yeats as “the most beautiful of all printed books.” This stunning work was acquired in 2016 to celebrate and honour the 50th anniversary acquisition of the Norman Colbeck Collection of 19th Century and Edwardian Poetry and Belles Lettres.

Digitizing the Kelmscott Chaucer

Digitizing the Kelmscott Chaucer was challenging because the book is tightly bound and has small gutters (the blank spaces surrounding a book’s type area). When digitizing, the material itself always comes first so we made the decision not to use our normal bound-book scanner. Instead we used a scanner with a top-notch digital camera back to capture the intricate detailing the Chaucer is known for.

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