Video: Travel Sketching Tips from my NZ sketchbooks

January 25, 2017 | 8 Comments

For my final installment of my New Zealand sketches I thought I would share lots of travel sketching strategies and tips while going through my sketchbook. So instead of traditional series of day by day articles (as I did on the 2014 trip to Brazil) I thought it would be fun to try a video version. I tried to go as quickly as I could, but it is still 25 minutes in length, so you might want to grab a cuppa before you start!

If you can’t see the embeddedd video please click the top image or here.

In the video I cover a number of topics including

  • how I reviewed and adjusted sketches that I knew at the time were not quite right,
  • how I made decisions as to what media and approach to use in different situations while travelling,
  • how I fitted my sketching into the day,
  • why I choose to leave some sketches incomplete,
  • and much more!

I hope you enjoy it!

Please make sure you check out Chris Haldane’s gorgeous paintings on Instagram or Flickr.

Links to articles mentioned in the video.

My favourite sketches from the trip
Seven Reflections on the trip (and travel sketching in general)
Foundations Friday: Feeling Edges article describing the Cromwell contour drawing and Geraldine House
Foundations Friday: Abstracting Shapes article describing the last Auckland city view sketch
Details about my Sketching Kit (and much more)

There is still much more I could say about my sketches in this book, so please let me know if you have any questions?


  • Tina Gartlan says:

    My sketching is sporadic. My Lamy Safari
    Is used only intermittently and I use pelican ink whisky is water reactive. I have now purchased Lamy Joy, so Light and beautiful to use – which waterproof ink can I use that won’t wreck my pen due to my sporadic use?

    • Liz Steel says:

      Tina – There is always a degree of risk using a pigmented ink, but I find De Atramentis black is the best of the various options (finest pigments?) and I have a few pens that I don’t use all the time and they are fine. BTW I find De A document brown not as good to sit around.

  • Fiona Campbell says:

    Brilliant video Liz; so professional with added images and comments. Thanks for sharing your trials & tribulations as well as some lovely work. Well done !

  • John David Clark says:

    Hello! I fond your site from searching for fountain pen tutorials. I have greatly enjoyed reading and learning more about watercolor sketching and am hoping to improve myself. I really enjoyed watching the video and hope to see more like it in the future.

  • Chas says:

    I have twice posted a comment here commenting on your use of the Pilot Parallel Pen ain the sketch shown opposite your favourite at between 6:02 and 6:20 in this video. Neither has shown up in the comments. Have I said something that offends you? Answer to my email account if you don’t want to put it in your comments.
    Thanks for your time.

    • Liz Steel says:

      Hi Chas. Sorry if comments haven’t appeared. Of course I want to have them on my site. Off to check for your parallel pilot questions

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