What is the meaning of the phrase 'colors outside the line'?

Children's coloring books have line drawings, and the children are supposed to color the bits inside the lines to make a picture. If you color outside of the lines, you are not making the picture that the designer meant for you to make. Ihe phrase has come to mean someone who doesn't follow established rules, or doesn't think along established lines. Depending on the context, this might be a good thing or a bad thing.
Children's coloring books have line drawings, and the children are supposed to color the bits inside the lines to make a picture. If you color outside of the lines, you are not making the picture that the designer meant for you to make. Ihe phrase has come to mean someone who doesn't follow established rules, or doesn't think along established lines. Depending on the context, this might be a good thing or a bad thing.