Paul Orich creates coloring pages from sketches of local homes
by Carrie Steinweg
Lansing, Ill. (September 2017) – Paul Orich has been looking at his Schultz Park neighborhood through the eyes of an artist. On walks through town he’s brought along a graph paper grid pad and sketched out some of the attractive homes he encounters. Those sketches have then been perfected at home and turned into coloring pages.
Orich’s original idea was to make a calendar that could be colored in, and he completed a dozen sketches of homes in Schultz Park or just outside of Schultz Park on Ridge Road. “Some of it is stylized, and some of it is visually accurate as to the buildings,” he said.
In a world where everything is digital, Orich’s designs are all done the old-fashioned way, using pencil and paper techniques he learned from mechanical drawing class at Harlan High School. He enjoyed the class so much that he ended up working a part-time, after-school job in high school for an electrical engineer. “I used a graph paper kind of approach to drawing architecture,” he said of his home sketches.
A retired educator, Orich spent 30 years as an art teacher at Harper and Crane High Schools in Chicago and later Wentworth Junior High School in Calumet City. In 2012, he earned designation as an Illinois Artisan in Folk Art for his work in creating art pieces from cardboard.
Some of Orich’s drawings have been seen at Troost Coffee & Tea, where they are offered with crayons for young customers to color in. Some have been printed in the Northwest Indiana Times’ monthly Your Family section. Orich is also working with the Lansing Historical Society to create a small book of six images and some historical text about the area; the booklets could then be provided to elementary school students.
Orich’s images have been put together in a self-published coloring book, “In the Neighborhood.” The coloring book is available for purchase online at www.paulorich.com.
Note: Paul Orich gave permission for The Lansing Journal to include one of his Schultz Park coloring pages in the October 4 print issue, and online as a downloadable PDF. Thank you, Paul.