TIP: Breaking In A New Sketchbook.

OK, this is kind of an old one - but it makes a good point. So I thought I’d re-post it now that I’ve made a commitment to myself to revitalize and make better use of this website/blog. A short video about my personal method for avoiding “Fear Of The Blank Page” syndrome when starting a new sketchbook.

It doesn’t always go down exactly like this… sometimes I’ll try and do a blind-folded portrait of Jeff Goldblum on a random page or just kick it around the backyard for a bit. The point is to deliberately “ruin” the pristine nature of a new book right from day one. Then you can get on with the important stuff.

I should say that this usually applies for “real” sketchbooks (i.e. ones that are intended to be used for sketches - not finished art). I have several “nice” sketchbooks that I do slightly more polished gouache and watercolour paintings in & I generally take better care of those (they often still end up with their covers scribbled on).

Another good tip is to go for a cheaper book if you’re intending to use it for play/learning sketching. These days cheap doesn’t have to equate to overall bad quality. I picked up a great, hardcover sketchbook with fairly decent paper for $6 at my local discount shop because I wanted to start doing more fast and dirty plein air watercolour sketches. If I take a better quality book with me I’m too tempted to spend extra time laboring over details, the cheap one is great.

But more about that in another post. The important thing to remember is that a beat up sketchbook that’s full is far more valuable than a pristine one that is empty.

Don’t be precious, just draw more.