Today’s prompt turned out to be bubble wrap so I know I must have been thinking about how fun it was to pop it when I put that there. What I wasn’t thinking about was how devlishly difficult this prompt would be to illustrate. That’s been part of the fun of using my own prompt list, as I really don’t remember what’s on it by the end. Kudos to those out there still sketching through the prompts in this challenge who have attempted this one! But seriously, who doesn’t love popping bubble wrap? I remember my mom getting something in the mail as a child and I would peek at the box hoping the words “Fragile” appeared. I knew whatever object was inside wasn’t for me, but I had no interest in that. I wanted to get my hands on those little plastic bubbles and pop them one by one. This hasn’t changed much as I really can’t touch bubble wrap without popping it. As a kid I loved the sound it made, like little firecrackers, but as an adult it’s more of a way to relieve stress.

As it turns out, compulsively attacking a sheet of bubble wrap does produce a significant calming effect. A psychology professor named Kathleen M. Dillon published a study in the journal Psychological Reports that showed that undergraduates who got to pop a couple sheets of bubble wrap felt at once calmer and more awake than the unlucky participants in the no-popping group. I mention this so that anyone reading and eyeing a piece of bubble wrap at this very moment should stop reading this drivel immediately and rush over to attack. It’s the only healthy and sensible thing to do. It’s always lovely to learn when something that seems a bit silly and fun is actually good for your health. So many things that you’re supposed to do in order to be healthy are not much fun at all. Though really, I think any time you’re having fun, you’re far more likely to feel healthy.

A box of bubble wrap as a kid was like getting a gift. Like most little kids, I often preferred playing with the box over whatever was inside. But if there were sheets of poppy plastic goodness there as well, then, it was going to be a lovely time ahead. Today, Amazon packs their shipments with giant air pillows that aren’t quite the same level of fun. Unless you use a knife to gently pop holes in the stuff, the bang sounds like a gunshot and only serves to worry the neighbors. No, I prefer the original version. The addictive nature of the stuff that made you giddy and meant you simply couldn’t stop until the last little bubble burst. These are the amazing little pleasures that made childhood awesome and, if we manage to hang on to them, even adulthood rather enjoyable. Just little moments, grabbed and enjoyed to their fullest, like that singular guilty pleasure of popping bubble wrap.

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About the Doodlewash

Sennelier L’Aquarelle: Burnt Sienna, Quinacridone Gold, Perylene Maroon, Phthalocyanine Blue, and Ultramarine Blue. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon with black ink in a little red cloth hardbound l’aquarelle journal I found in a Paris shop.
Day 30 - Popping Bubble Wrap in Fragile Box
Posted by:Charlie O'Shields (doodlewash)

Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world!

28 replies on “Popping Bubble Wrap

  1. I still snatch them before everyone and go to town. Drives my kids crazy, after a quick burst; I start to pop them one at a time LOL =)… I remind them it’s my job to drive them nuts ♥

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The joy of a parcel arriving, the item inside, and a moment of calm, whilst popping the bubble wrap, you can forget about how much money you spent on the item that came in it, lol …maybe that’s why we keep buying, the power of the bubble wrap? Great painting, not an easy subject to paint, much easier to pop, I’ll stick with popping 😀

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  3. Ah, bubble wrap – the amusement that knows no age boundary! A while ago, I got a package at work that had a ton of bubble wrap. We spread it on the floor around our desks and then sat in our chairs and rolled over it. Such is the life of cubicle-bound workers!

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  4. Oh goodness yes, I can imagine this would be far harder than it might seem – cracking job, though, as ever! Who doesn’t love to waste far too much time picking up the bubblewrap and popping away? I daresay it’s often more attractive than whatever came inside it! 😉 I used to like scrunching it up and twisting it, to a satisfying round of pops. Fun fun!

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  5. The small bubble wrap in envelopes make wonderful prints with paint. I’m always so thrilled to get some…lol! 😃 It is the little things in life that bring us joy, huh, Charlie?! 😉 I like your Doodlewash! 💙

    Liked by 1 person

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