Ever since drawing one of Kathy’s blue jays in ink for June’s installment of Draw a Bird Day, I’ve been drawing more than painting. Pointy implements, please! I couldn’t resist a recent photo of Jodi’s dog Charlie at Life in Between over breakfast….and by dinnertime, I was off to try this photo from last September as well. I dare you to resist these gorgeous images of a soulfully beautiful animal! I enjoy drawing animals, dogs in particular, very much. Their whole life and all of their love sits in their eyes, and what could attract an artist more than that?!
Hub and I love baseball, but it’s not always the most action-packed event on TV. So I’m sharing last night’s “fun in the sketchbook while watching TV” with you this morning. This was done with a 4B pencil in a sketchbook recommended to me by Kirk at Dumb Sketch Daily. It’s called a Universal Sketchbook and it’s made by Canson. And I LOVE it! Why? It’s 100 sheets (so, 200 pages) long (longer than most), it’s inexpensive (currently $4.50 at Blick for the 8 1/2″ x 5″ size, perfect for drawing in my lap, as I love to do), lightweight, and it works well for pencil, ink, colored pencil, conte or charcoal, even light watercolor washes (as shown here).
I think what I love the most about this book is that it’s so inexpensive that I’m not afraid to “waste” it. I will try subjects that are way too big for me. I’m not afraid to make an ugly drawing or waste the beautiful paper or mess up the lovely book I bought. You know? Yet, it’s an inviting surface that works well for most mediums, so I often surprise myself by how the sketches turn out. Jill of Jill’s Art Journal encouraged me to keep a daily art journal last year, and that tip led to daily drawing nearly every day since last May. You would only need 2-3 of these little books to take you all the way through the year (I often use the backs of the pages too), and it’s a nice little companion that travels well. It’s spiral-bound, with perforated pages. What’s not to love? I wouldn’t have even attempted a foreshortened pose like this last May. Now, it’s a fun challenge. Perfect result? Heck no, but I’m steadily improving with a daily practice.
Drawing is a really inexpensive pastime. And it’s a fun way to record snapshots of your life. Date each entry, and watch your skills improve. You will be blown away by this practice! The only other thing you need (IMO) is a kneadable eraser. It felt funny to use at first, and way too much like something artists use (and I was much too timid to call myself an artist), but you will be glad you got it. These things cost less than a dollar. And to start, just use any #2 pencil you have lying around your house! So, for under $7, what have you got to lose? People tell me I’m talented. I can assure you, I’m not. But I practice. I practice almost daily. And it makes a HUGE difference, as you’ll see with each page turned. (Note: your purchases from these links help to support my site.)
If you try this, please let me know how you’re doing with it! If there is anything I can help you with, I will. Since having a child over 25 years ago, nothing has changed my life more than a regular art practice. It will heal and transform you in ways you can’t expect – all wonderful! I shall jump off my soapbox now, but I just had to get this out there! Jodi, thank you for sharing your photos of your lovely Charlie.
Peace and a happy, creatively wonderful weekend to all!