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Find Your Sticker-Making Muse

Dream of drawing your own iMessage stickers? Tap for inspiring advice.

When you need to get your point across,an iMessage sticker can be surprisingly persuasive. Why text “Pleeeeeease?” or 🙏 when you could send an adorable puppy, peering up with gigantic, tug-on-your-heartstrings eyes?

An iMessage sticker can be both personal and universal—as you can see from the stickers below, created by Russian artists. Here’s their advice to the aspiring.

Zhenya Tkach, illustrator of Max the Husky

A teacher of mine told me Walt Disney had his animators install mirrors in their studios so they could make faces and draw what they saw. I have a mirror on my desk, and I’ve been making faces and capturing them right away.

I think the most important thing is the desire to be creative. If you have this, methods and solutions will come. Draw every day, find creative communities, and look for inspiration in what surrounds you. Technology allows for remote learning, so you can start anytime. Today is a day of opportunity, and you shouldn’t miss it.

Share your work and don’t be afraid of criticism. For your courage, you’ll get a reward and a curse: to do your favorite thing for money and to experience the pains of creativity.

    Max the Husky Stickers

    Stickers and Emoji Keyboard

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Alexandra Zutto, illustrator of Rainbow Horse

To give my stickers more emotion, I look to my child, and I try to channel my own emotion, to feel it as much as I can. Then I just draw quickly, without thinking. You have to turn off your brain as much as possible. The coolest moment is when it feels like it’s not you doing the drawing but some amazing being inside you.

A 6-year-old child can capture an emotion, and it may even be more expressive than what an adult makes, since children are very expressive. There are a lot of artists who work in a primitive style, with just sticks and circles. It’s very cool to be able to convey something using those means.

Start by copying someone’s work. Watching video lessons can be very useful as well. Try to spend at least an hour or two drawing daily, and eventually it will become better.

    Rainbow Horse Stickers

    Stickers and Emoji Keyboard

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Ilya Kazakov, illustrator of Cosmo Cat

Usually beginners have a fear of a blank canvas, a fear of screwing up. This is normal. The way to overcome this is to just start drawing. Also, start with something simple. Look at the objects around you and turn them into characters.

If you like what you draw, the opinion of others is secondary. Draw for your own pleasure. But if you value others’ opinions, then there are many platforms—from Instagram to Tumblr to Behance—where you can find like-minded people, follow their work, communicate, and grow creatively with them.

    Cosmo Cat Stickers

    Stickers and Emoji Keyboard

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