December was another month when I didn’t publish many articles here on the blog, but I was still sketching regularly!
So in this roundup article I want to share most of the pages in my current sketchbook. Warning: Lots of scrolling coming up 🙂
- Two doors: Dutch vs Italian (done for Foundations )
- Two favourite sketchbook pages
- Sketchbook Design: Behind the scenes
I had a lot of fun being a guest on the Rosemary Brushes show: Artist Spotlight. Thanks Symi! BTW there is a brush giveaway associated with this interview.
And then if you missed it last week… here is my summary of the year:
Okay… time to get on to my December sketches!
I started Sketchbook No. 140 on 30 November, changing from a 5.5×8.5 Softcover Portrait Alpha to my favourite book – 8×10 Softcover Portrait Alpha. Ah! this book always feels so good when I return to it after trying something else. As I have shared before, I love using Alpha books for my everyday sketchbook as the paper is good enough but not too precious and the 8×10 size gives me a lot of freedom when it comes to designing my pages.
For a number of reasons I wasn’t able to get out sketching on location for most of the month (I haven’t been in lockdown) so there are a number of sketches from photos in this collection of pages. When I did finally get back out on location sketching it took me a few outings before I felt totally at ease again and my working started flowing again.
I wanted to do a trial run of filming myself for Sketchbook Design at my local cafe, so a coffee and very healthy paleo donut! I was rather distracted by staff and patrons talking to me while I did it so I didn’t feel totally in control… but so much fun! When I got home, I sketched Flinders Street Station from a photo as a way of processing some very sad news from friends in Melbourne. Doing this sketch was a lovely way to relive memories! BTW this spread is included as a demo inside Sketchbook Design
Filming my breakfast sketches at Goodfields Eatery – also a demo inside Sketchbook Design.
Nothing exciting to sketch during the day so I did a Borromini building in the evening (S. Ivo in Rome)
I felt an urge to do a landscape sketch so I returned to Italy (virtually of course!) and did a quick sketch of the view from last year’s hotel room in Montone.
Dragonfly latte art and a very very rushed teacup sketch.
Back at Goodfields again – I’m trying to make the most of my ability to work in my local cafe at the moment! On this occasion I did some Foundations work – comparing a quick continuous drawing with one done using a square viewfinder. (If you have signed up for Foundations at any time…. I talked about this in the 2020 Livestream No. 5. The replay is in the last section of the course.)
A Scottish castle – Duart Castle on Mull – which was featured in something which I watched that week.
My nephew’s birthday cake and a view from a local carpark.
An unfinished sketch of Uig on the Isle of Lewis (I only did one pass of washes) which I talked about in another Foundations Livestream (was it Livestream 5 or 6?)
And oh! a teacup sketch was done at some stage during the month!
Another afternoon tea to celebrate opening the doors for Sketchbook Design.
Random bits and pieces…. I’m a fan of Luxey Cups and De Atramentis Document Ink comes in a new fancy bottle now!
A rushed wonky oblique sketch of a church in Mosman and a dinner sketch. I was trying to use up some of the Wisteria paint which I still had on my palette. The colours on this spread are definitely not usual for me.
The seats where I was sitting to sketch earlier in the year are definitely winter spots… all in hot afternoon sun now. But as it’s been so overcast lately I was able to do a very quick loose sketch of St Albans.
A lot of green and yellow…. The view out of my bedroom window and a fancy breakfast to celebrate a few days off. I also put my second Palladio pendant back on the chain – I had taken it off in November so that it wasn’t jingling while I was filming Sketchbook Design!
Xmas Eve dinner with my parents… crazy quick sketches as I didn’t want my mum’s wonderful roast dinner to go cold!
Sketching on the 25th with my friends Chris and Rooi. I still have to film an outdoor demo (or two) for the last lesson of Sketchbook Design, so I did a test run of filming this page. As a result of chatting and constantly checking my camera this wasn’t the most focused sketch. But a lovely morning!
Our family day was to be on the 26th so I had some time on my own in the afternoon on the 25th. Time for another sketching outing – I went to Milsons Point. It was grey and really windy but I had fun sketching and chatting to a number of people who were out for a walk.
Trying to get back into the groove with more sketches – Luna Park.
Evening Skype with my sister (and family) and then a sketch-free family day. Just too much going on at mum and dad’s – such a fun relaxed day!
BTW if you are wondering why I haven’t made a fuss about Christmas – you can find out more here.
Back at Goodfields for lunch this time. I decided to try and do a really slow and neat (for me) sketch of my view! A sign to myself that I was on holidays (vacation).
Two tea tins and another Goldfields coffee! This page was intentionally left a little unfinished as part of the homework for Sketchbook Design which has just started!
Feeling like I want to do another landscape but this time a desert scene… and thinking about my amazing trip to western USA in 1999 with my brother. Monument Valley was definitely a highlight. I was trying something different with this sketch but didn’t quite turn out as I had hoped. But I’m happy that I’m feeling comfortable to experiment in my daily sketchbook. There can be a pressure to try and make every page ‘good’ but going into 2021 I want to be bolder with experiments in my daily book. I have so many new layout ideas floating in my head at the moment which I’ll be able to use even on crazy risk-taking pages.
The final spread for 2020 was another risk-taking sketching session. I was at a NYE gathering, the meat was being constantly moved on top of the grill and my four nieces and nephews running around and distracting me. But even though you might not be able to understand what I was sketching, this page brings back memories of a lovely afternoon and I’m pleased that I attempted to sketch! So I think that this last spread was a good way to end my sketching for the year – taking risks and trying to document my life without worrying too much about the result. And most of all thinking about how to create more successful sketches next time!
It feels really good to be up to date with my sketchbook pages now… especially as Sketchbook Design has just started! Already I’m feeling super inspired as people start introducing themselves to the group (wow! what an amazing bunch!) and share some of their work as part of the Introduction to the course. It’s not too late to join – find out more here.
Wow! This has been a long post… so finally… Happy New Year!
Thanks for all the support and interest in my work and ramblings during 2020. We have all been through a lot in the last 12 months and I deeply appreciate you being here!
I have so many things to be thankful for and your friendship and support is definitely one of the big motivators for me to keep going with my sketching. So thank you again!!!!!
Take care my friends!