Recently I enjoyed a lovely evening in London in the company of illustrator Johanna Basford and Staedtler for their #MyCreativeEscape campaign, which is all about promoting creative relaxation and using adult colouring to de-stress and express yourself.
With life being so busy all the time, it’s no wonder we are turning to meditation, mindfulness and colouring. If you’ve already embraced the whole adult colouring trend, you’ll know Johanna’s name and books. She is the author and artist behind a range of really charming. beautifully illustrated colouring books, including titles such as ‘Enchanted Forest’ and ‘Secret Garden’ – and now in time for Christmas there’s her wonderfully festive ‘Johanna’s Christmas’ book.
The event was hosted by Staedtler, the well known company that has been making pens, pencils and artists materials for decades. Johanna only uses Staedtler products and has done so since she was in art college, due to their high quality and affordability. I met several members of the Staedtler team who had flown over from Germany. They gifted attendees with a lovely goodie bag containing Johanna’s new colouring book and a whole host of pens and pencils so we could have a try at home.
Meanwhile, there were more books and colouring materials on the table and we were encouraged to have a go, whilst enjoying a glass of wine!
During the event, Johanna described how she works – first drawing her designs with a mechanical pencil, then going over the lines with a fine black pigment liner pen, before using the classic Staedtler eraser to remove her pencil marks. She also shared plenty of tips and hints about drawing and colouring, and we got the opportunity to chat with her as she came round the table.
Apart from drawing and painting with my children over recent years, I haven’t done much colouring since I was at school. I was quite artistic back then and so it felt very natural to pick up the pencils and start shading with them. It was really fun and engrossing! I will definitely be doing some more over the Christmas break when I have a few quiet(ish) moments.
The ergosoft pencils I tried seemed superior in a number of ways; they’re triangular in shape which makes them ergonomic and comfy to hold. They also have a white protective layer around the coloured centre, so if you drop your pencil it won’t shatter inside. (Remember how it always used to be such a pain when you dropped a pencil, then tried to sharpen it and it would just keep breaking and crumbling?!)
The pencil crayons felt really smooth on the paper and were easy to shade with and combine colours, whilst the water colour pencils were super fun to use. I can see how this adult colouring trend has really caught on. It is a great way to let go of the day’s stresses and strains and focus your mind off any worries. Just in general day to day life, I think ten or fifteen minutes colouring time in the evening would definitely help me to relax.
It was such a nice evening and I’m pleased to say that Staedtler were happy to offer a selection of colouring goodies as a giveaway for one lucky visitor to the #tidylife website. If you’d like the chance to win, all you have to do to enter is follow the steps below and don’t forget to check out #MyCreativeEscape to find lots of colouring techniques, tutorials and printouts for you to enjoy.