Adulthood comes with a lot of responsibilities: work, rent, family… you get it. In the midst of a hectic day-to-day routine, it can be easy to lose your creative spirit – which essentially is why adult coloring books have become such a phenomenon. They’re easy to jump into, don’t require a lot of skill and have been proven to have stress-relieving benefits (I can attest to this when I traded television for coloring for a week). But like any great trend, there is a rise and a fall — and it looks like the next iteration of easy adult creativity just might be in sticker form.
Paint by Sticker is a new creative activity that manages to feel similar to the trendy coloring books we’ve grown to love without any of the extra materials. Released earlier this year, the books offer up outlined drawings that come with corresponding pages of stickers. Match the numbers on the page with the corresponding stickers and, well, that’s about it, TBH. It’s a little bit mindless, but that’s kind of the point.
I decided to try the trend for the first time while on a flight to Austin, Texas. I was in a middle seat and had next to zero space, but hey, that couldn’t stop me from a mid-flight creativity sesh. Since this was my first attempt at stickering (?), I decided to start with a relatively basic page from the book: a hummingbird.
I began sticker-drawing (sorry guys, don’t really know what to call this new craft) while also listening to a Harry Potter audiobook. Because it’s really just matching stickers to the corresponding number on the page, I was able to pay attention to both. And any time I can successfully multitask is a win for me. The man sitting next to me was very intrigued by my artistic project and asked where he could find one. As the flight attendants announced we were making our descent, I put the final touches on my first ever sticker book drawing.
One thing that tends to discourage me when coloring is that it can take SO long to finish a page out of some of the more complicated books (like Johanna Basford’s books). They’re beautiful, but sometimes I want something I can complete start-to-finish in an hour. With this, you can.
I will say that some/a lot of the stickers are REALLY small, like to the the point where you’d be better off peeling + applying them with a tweezer than your fingers. As someone who struggles with extremely detailed crafts (like jewelry making), I found this to be sort of frustrating. It was also a challenge to get the stickers to line up just right with the pages. Thankfully, the paper you adhere the stickers to is pretty good at allowing you to peel it back off and try again should your first attempt fail.
The main difference I noticed between sticker books and coloring books was essentially what you do with them after they’re done. If you spend hours expertly coloring in a page of a book like The Enchanted Forest, you may feel inclined to do something with it, like frame your art work. I didn’t feel quite the same way when I finished the page out of the sticker book. It was great to complete it, but it’s not exactly something I want to hang in my house. (Though that’s just me!)
All in all, this new art form was super easy, not intimidating and overall relatively relaxing. If you’re looking for a non-committal creative venture to try after work or on a long flight, you and adult sticker books might just be a match made in heaven.
Have you tried a new creativity trend recently? Share with us on Twitter @BritandCo.