When it comes to hobbies to help me relax in life, I enjoy walking, reading, crochet, and photography, but I must admit the pastime that feels most like play to me has to be colouring-in. Everything else can potentially be bracketed under ‘responsible adulting’ – walking is good for my health, reading broadens my mind, crochet creates a useful end product, and photography has a technical element and of course the end results can be kept for posterity to be shown and shared with others.
But colouring-in remains something left over from childhood that is done purely for fun, done for no other reason than because I enjoy it! It is not a means to an end but instead is an end in itself. I find I easily become absorbed in the process of choosing a medium and colours and designs, and apart from the few I photograph to share on my blog the majority of my completed colouring-in sits squirrelled away in closed books in a closed cupboard, effectively for my eyes only. It’s my secret stash of indulgent escapism, page upon page of playing just for the sake of it, and I absolutely love it 🙂
I like using different colouring in techniques depending on the subject – usually I use coloured pencils for simpler designs made up of larger blocks of colour, and keep my finer-pointed gel pens for smaller, more fiddly designs. And sometimes I even mix and match both on the same page.
Today I’ve got a really bad headache so am sitting on the sofa resting, and I chose to stick to my coloured pencils and simple designs on an A4-size page to keep me company – and overall I’m happy enough with the finished results! 🙂
Sometimes I can’t decide whether to colour in using coloured pencils or gel pens, so I’ll combine both in the same design. I like the creative way the flat vibrancy of the gel pens complements the softer, more subtle shading tones of the coloured pencils 🙂
It’s funny how several things sometimes just come together seamlessly to create a blog post. Today’s Fandango’s One Word Challenge:Tribal merged in my mind with a quote I read on someone else’s blog the other day (apologies, can’t remember who!) that said:
So I decided this morning to create myself an A4 sized doodle quote page to colour in and share. Once I’d finished drawing my outline I was trying (rather unsuccessfully) to take a photograph of it before I started colouring it in, and my husband suggested scanning it and creating a cleaner digital copy instead – good idea!
I’m actually quite pleased with how it’s turned out 🙂
‘Colour is a power which directly influences the soul’
I wonder sometimes why I love being surrounded with colour so much, and frequently the answer that comes most often straight to mind is ‘Because your internal life is so grey’. I choose to colour my world in bright and strong and vibrant hues, almost proving a point to myself that yes, I can do colour, while inside I regularly feel nothing more than shrouded in a subdued, moody monochrome.
Depression does not provide a sunny-day-colour internal landscape, nor even allow for a veiled silvery sheen like muted moonlight in a clear night sky. Instead it smears my soul with thick, sticky mud, soaks my very fabric with foul, clouded misery until the sheer weight drags me down and I feel chilled to the bone, infused with a deadly damp that refuses to warm my sad, aching heart.
But I refuse to be beaten. And so I keep trying hard to bring colour to my life on the outside, in the hope that some of it may seep inward slightly, brightening the edges my dark dull mood…
I’m not generally a very Christmassy person, but this year I’m trying my hardest to get into the swing of things with a more positive frame of mind, so I’ve started with getting myself a Christmas colouring book to see how that goes – so far, so good! 🙂
I decided to give my gel pens a whirl today, but got so engrossed in colouring in my chosen design I forgot to be careful to leave each coloured ink to dry off completely before starting on the next colour – oops! Oh well, using a little bit of artistic licence I’ve called my final masterpiece ‘Smudged Circle’! 🙂
I haven’t done any colouring in for months – since mid-July, in fact, when we first heard the sale of our London flat was going through, and life has been pretty non-stop round of packing/ selling/ moving up to Inverness/ buying a new house/ moving in/ sorting out household stuff ever since! But right now I’ve got a cold and am feeling lousy, so today I’m just sitting on the sofa, resting and colouring in… 🙂
My husband picked me up a Lizzie Mary Cullen ‘Magical City’ colouring book for next to nothing in a charity shop the other day, with only three out of 70 designs lightly coloured in by the previous owner. I’d never thought about colouring in city-scapes before, but I’ve made a start on going over the three half-heartedly-done (by my standards) designs in my own rather more heavy-handed style.
I’d already finished re-colouring the first one (of London’s Baker Street) before I realised I should probably have taken a picture of it before I began, as well as after… Oh well… Oops! At least I took pics of the other two to compare…
Anyway, here is a little gallery of the book cover as well as my before and after colouring in shots (minus the one I forgot). It turns out I’m really happy with my second-hand colouring in as well as with my otherwise pristine second hand colouring in book – definitely something creative to smile about this week, and for the month ahead at least! 🙂