CREATING A SKETCHBOOK HABIT

It’s easy to fall into a habit of doing or not doing something, especially the not doing something! At the beginning of the year I realised I’d lost the habit of sketching or painting which I used to thoroughly enjoy. As well as practicing more abstract work I wanted to practice more drawing and sketching skills. I don’t think I’d actually drawn anything for a long long time especially if it wasn’t for an end goal like designing a stamp or stencil or a design for a christmas card. I gathered a few books together from my studio, none of them new. They’d either been started and abandoned or bought and not started at all.

MY CURRENT SKETCH BOOKS

Each one has a different use which is why I have six on the go. Firstly from the bottom up I have my inspiration journal. I’ve had this for a while now and I’ve even blogged about it more than once. I use this more like a collage book sticking in magazine images of things I like, patterns, colours or ideas I might be able to use in other work. I really do find it a very useful tool. It helps to choose colour combinations, ideas for a sketch or painting, layouts or even to simply remind me of what I have in my studio. It’s such a simple concept of cutting and sticking then adding in some paint or ink.

TWO PAGES OF MY INSPIRATION COLLAGE JOURNAL

Next up is my watercolour sketchbook. I call it a sketchbook when in fact I like to keep it neat and clean and draw realistic images which I colour with watercolour and pencils. This type of thing does take time which I don’t always have so this is why I only do this occasionally. It gets me into a habit of looking closely so I notice things I didn’t actually see before.

My mixed media journal is next, I’ve had this for a few years now and dip in and out of it. It has everything from drawings and collage to gel prints I really like and mixed media pages. It’s a bit of an anything goes type of book in which I just enjoy the process of trying things out. As I’m passed the middle and I’ve glued alot of papers in there, the pages are getting a bit bent but I don’t mind that at all. It’s a Ranger mixed media journal so the pages are good and strong.

Then I have my new accordion watercolour sketchbook which I’ve shown you here before. This large one I’m using to test it out as I’ll be selling these at KUKI but I’ve made myself two smaller ones which I’ll use to take with me if we go away anywhere.

I’m also using a really nice A5 sketchbook as an abstract testing book. Inside its pages I’m mainly trying out composition and testing out ideas. It might be using watercolour, acrylic or collage, whatever I fancy at the time. The pages are not particularly good quality as it’s a sketchbook but this hasn’t put me off using all sorts of materials including ink which I was surprised and pleased to find didn’t bleed through as much as I thought it might. This is a new book for me this year and I’m finding it very useful so far as I decide what I like and don’t like.

Finally on the top of my stack is my actual sketchbook. This is a much more loose style, including quick sketches of things with less details. This is the one I’ll most likely use if I need a quick arty fix. I plan to take this one out and about once the good weather is here possibly into the forest when I go out for a walk with Cooper.

So that’s a look at my collection of sketchbooks and why I’m using more than one.

I’ll be back next week but in the meantime have a good weekend and stay safe.

Jaine xx

Outdoor Inspiration

It’s a real treat to be able to create outside, I relocate to a shady spot at the bottom of the garden as often as possible. Inspiration is all around me and when it’s too hot to stay indoors, the shade of a tree is the perfect place to be.

On this occasion I put a few bits and pieces in a tray along with some pre-cut gel printed papers so I could put together this little gel print micro journal.

I say little, it actually turned out to be quite chunky by the time I’d added all my pages. Once I’d sewn it all together I thought it was so cute I didn’t want to cover the binding or bright print up, so left it as it was simply adding a little collaged embellishment on the front. The quote on an old book page jumped out at me and begged to be added to the front. After all it did sum up the afternoon quite nicely!

On another occasion I took out my sketching supplies and sat under the tree. I used the flowers in front of me as inspiration for this page in my watercolour journal adding doodles and paint.

I hope you have a little outside space to sit and reflect or use as an inspiration spot. It’s great for recharging the batteries.

Have a good weekend

Jaine x

Phrase Of The Year 2018

You might at one time or another find yourself overwhealmed by having¬† so much going on or a big project/idea you really want to put into motion but just getting started is difficult and it’s easy to become disheartened, and loose focus. Everyone suffers from it at some time or another and the easiest way to deal with it is to give up and not bother. After all, why carry on if everyone else seems to be making a better job of it?

Well, take heart in the fact that this is me most days. What am I going to do about it?¬† Telling you lot for starters. That’s a load off, then I’ll add this quote to my bullet journal where I’ll see it almost every day. It’ll be a little reminder in those times of self doubt that this is my mantra for the year.

The original sketch was part of a doodle challenge or in my case a sketch challenge hosted by Paper Pen and Plan on Facebook.

Once it was in my brand spanking new bujo I set about colouring it in with the watercolours which came in the January Sweet Treat box from Paperpenandplan on Etsy. I love these cards for carrying around in between the pages of my journal. They’re handy for traveling too.

I’m having a great time sketching random objects.

I’m looking forward to filling my sketchbook with more random stuff.

Jaine xx

Moving Into The Purple Orange And Black

It feels like since coming home from Ireland my life has been on full speed and in the blink of an eye Autumn is well and truly here with its colour changes and unpredictable weather. It’s a beautiful time of year though and we’re so lucky to live surrounded by forest so we can watch the changing season.

With Summer over we had our Autumn meeting of the Mosaik group and a few members were keen to make a junk journal. I put together a kit of materials and they loved it. The kit included book pages, paper bags, ephemera and patterned papers as well as tags and ribbons.

I love making mini versions too which will fit in my A6 Travelers notebook cover and they make a great place for jotting down notes or ideas on the go or somewhere for a quick sketch. This one is made using the mop up papers from my messy craft projects.

Even though the pages inside are grungy and messy it doesn’t mean the outside has to be too and of course I went mad on the decorating. I used the contents of my September box from Paper Pen and Plan and made a mini Halloween themed junk journal.

I’ve never been a big fan of the colour purple but since it’s been the most popular colour from my TN cover range I thought I’d use one myself seeing as it matches perfectly with the green and orange. I have to say the colour has warmed on me and I’m really loving it now.

The inserts are made by Ali-Beth of Paper Pen and Plan too and she makes sizes to fit most TN’s and planners.

At last I’ve found some time to fill out a page in my sketchbook from the Sketchbook project. Naturally mushrooms feature on the pages. I’ve become a bit obsessed with mushrooms from drawing them to foraging and eating them.

Finally for this week, the November issue of Craft Stamper is out and this month I’ve written the Masterclass feature. I used a stamp from my good friend Magda Polakow which I adore. If you have trouble finding a copy it’s available to buy here at Mags UK

Have a good weekend

Jaine xx