In case you haven’t heard, colouring-in (yes, the thing you did as a kid during boring car journeys) has gone from niche hobby to full-blown fashion trend. So whether you want to de-stress, get back to your childhood or let your inner artist out this summer, grab your Crayolas, nab a sketchbook and head to these colourful spots around the city to inspire your creativity and find your zen.
Blink and you’ll miss it, but this cosy little courtyard off Shaftesbury Avenue is one of the city’s most colourful hangouts. Sit on the plant pot benches in the centre and soak up the vibrant brickwork and dazzling window panes. Whether you’re looking for colouring inspiration or you just need a pick-me-up, there isn’t a more cheerful, flamboyant street in London.
South Bank skate park
You don’t need to be good on a skateboard to enjoy this colourful spot. Visit South Bank’s skate park and, if you can dodge all the flying BMXs and whatnot, explore the vivid artwork and graffiti. It’s basically one big, urban, concrete rainbow, so it’s bound to get your creative juices flowing.
Brockley street art
If you’re a south London colouring enthusiast, you may want to check out the stunning murals dotted around Brockley. From giant faces to exotic animals, to weird, wacky and wonderful designs by some of south London’s best artists, there’s brightness all around to help you find a colouring happy place. And you’re in luck if you visit now, as the Brockley Street Art Festival finished in early June and there are lots of new additions to behold.
Queen Mary’s Garden
Nestled in Regent’s Park, Queen Mary’s Garden isn’t just any old grassy green garden, oh no. It happens to play host to over 12,000 roses of all varieties and colours. If you fancy being at one with nature and getting away from your computer or phone screen for a while, then grab your pencils and find a bench by the roses for some outdoorsy artwork.
Camden High Street
Whether you’re exploring the market or just enjoying the craziness that is Camden High Street, don’t forget to look up. There’s plenty of colour and just a little bit of strange attached to the front of the buildings, making this surprising, punky space perfect for stretching your artistic muscles. Just make sure you dodge the hordes of tourists.
God’s Own Junkyard
Don’t want to stay inside the lines? If you’re willing to travel a little further for your creative inspiration then God’s Own Junkyard in Walthamstow is a wonderland of colourful neon signs just waiting to be marvelled at. Not so much a junkyard as a treasure trove of colour, you can enjoy a drink or a cake among late artist Chris Bracey’s extensive collection of neon signage. It's a great place to whack out the sketchbook.