Sketchbook Journal

An Artist’s Walk

Take your sketchbook with you.  Make notes and quick sketches as you do the following:

  • Find four very different kinds of lines.
  • Find five things with different shapes.
  • Find two different things with interesting spaces in them.
  • Find three different textures.
  • Find a color that you’ve never tried to name before.

If your eye really sees these things, your hand will be able to draw them.  Drawing starts with wonder.


How Make a Sketchbook Journal Usefulsketchbook visual

  • Plan on a regular routine of sketching and commit to it.
  • Think of every drawing in your sketchbook as being disposable. If you wouldn’t dare erase or scribble over drawings in your sketchbook then those drawings are not serving the purpose for which they were intended.
  • Work quickly to make on the spot records of subjects that interest you.
  • Sketch out preliminary drawings for future paintings, collages, prints or other projects.
  • Make hand written notes in your sketchbook that help you record details and ideas that are too difficult to draw.
  • Record the date the sketch was made and the location. Make comments on the theme, idea, or subject in the sketch.
  • Use your sketchbook to make spontaneous drawings (doodles) that have no predetermined subject.
  • Record ideas in your sketchbook that come to you in a dream or just seem to appear out of the blue.
  • Observations or learning to look is key.  Developing the ability to notice and remember the defining qualities of an object will help you draw it later.
  • Use your sketchbook to keep materials like color swatches, texture samples, photographs, or collage materials for future projects.


Artist Study

When doing an artist study, you will need to pick a topic that interests you and on a single page complete several renderings (sketches) of that idea. An example of such is the topic of a dog.  You can focus on several areas of the animal, eyes, paws, nose, ears, the entire body running/sleeping/eating… Think of an artist study as a page dedicated to that one interesting idea.