This review has probably been my most fun and most visual post to-date. While I absolutely love escaping with a book in hand, it was amazing to pass the time and relax whilst doing something a little different. I have wanted an adult colouring book for months and I love any excuse to sit down and avoid adult responsibilities. I wanted a book that had a lot of patterns that filled its pages, so this particular one was absolutely perfect for me. It’s a colouring book that doesn’t make you feel like a five year old, what more could you want?
Millie Marotta’s Tropical Wonderland is the second in a series of colouring books illustrated by Millie Marotta and with its intricate and detailed designs it encourages creative freedom so that every individual can make each and every page their own.
I have a Fine Art A Level under my belt, so I’m an absolute flaming perfectionist over anything arty or creative. Which means I was a little worried that I wouldn’t be able to fully relax and let the process of creating something calm me like it used to. Every time I didn’t stay within the lines, the perfectionist niggled a little bit more and I will probably actively avoid the sections that ask you to draw your own tropical flora. They scare me because I’ve never been too great at illustration. So my attempt will only end up with me sulking and not opening the book for a few days and that’s not fun for anyone. However, once I got into the rhythm of colouring I forgot about my initial apprehension, proved myself wrong and lost hours to filling in just one page.
I had an absolute ball playing around with different techniques to fill the shapes and spaces. Using one colour per block or blending colours, I could make this as bright and as colourful as I wanted – the possibilities are endless. Using practically all of the colours available to me probably makes this a very unrealistic interpretation of a tropical wonderland, but it just looks so pretty. The intricate designs allow you to change up colours as and when you want to, rather than leaving one leaf or flower one block colour.
At the moment, my final year at university is only just starting, so I didn’t have much stress or many worries to escape from. I just couldn’t wait to get started and write about this book, and so the page was completed through pure excitement and determination rather than the need for therapeutic activities. But later, when I have to juggle assignments, lectures, part-time work and keeping up with my society and having a social life, the “me time” I got through sitting and concentrating on nothing other than the task at hand will really help. I would recommend this to anyone who has trouble un-winding after a long and busy day, suffers from anxiety (as this has been highly recommended to me by a dear friend who does) and also finds enjoyment in making something look pretty without the hassle or stress of trying to create your own illustration – you don’t need to be the next Van Gogh to enjoy a book like this, but if you are then you’ll probably do a better job staying within the lines than I did and possibly attempt the “do it yourself” sections.
This colouring book will last me throughout my entire final year of university; it’ll aid me in my endless procrastination marathons and to de-stress me when my assignment and dissertation deadlines loom closer. It’s basically unproductive productivity and that means it’s okay, right? Okay, maybe not. But it has a wonderful purpose and therapeutic value if everything feels like it’s getting a little bit too much and you want to escape from being overwhelmed.
The amount of time and care I took in completing just the first page leads me to believe that this book will be a very long and slow work in progress, which I will probably needlessly document on Snapchat and Instagram. The amount of illustrations there are for you means endless distraction and art therapy. The quality of the book itself and the pages means it is absolutely worth every single penny you spend on it.