Welcome to my new blog!
Hello! My name is Jamie, and here is my sketchbook. Or here is where it will be. About ten years ago, possibly longer, I read Danny Gregory’s book Everyday Matters, and I became obsessed. I quickly read every book I could get my hands on sketching, journal sketching, travel notebooks, and pen, ink, and watercolor.
That’s where it ended. Sort of. I sketched here and there. Every few months I’d brave my fear and intimidation, usually after reading a new book on the subject, and attempt some sketches. Scattered throughout my journals I’d put tiny, wiggly sketches about my day, and I’d keep it up for a few days, or weeks. The inner critic would once again take over, and I’d stop, because clearly I had “no talent” and I “wasn’t good.”
The desire has never left. I keep reading books. Then as Instagram grew I found myself following the accounts of the writers of these books. Always, always, always I wish and dream and hope that I “could draw like that someday.”
The gift of watching people post their art on Instagram, and in blogs is that it taught me that drawing is actually something that needs time and practice to achieve skill at. Yes, I know, how is it possible I didn’t already know that? I didn’t. I thought it was “talent” and I just wasn’t cut out for it.
Only I kept making my little sketches. Particularly of clothes because I sew, and much to my surprise the few I’d share the sketches with thought they were great! Me? No way!
Last year I started a number of online drawing and painting classes. I don’t think I ever finished any of them. However, taking the classes, and what I did do of them really ignited my love of watercolors, along with my realization that what I want to achieve with my drawing really is nothing more than learning a few techniques (like how much water goes along with the paint to get the kind of wash you want) and most of all PRACTICE.
My biggest revelation really is that you just have to put in the work. Not sure why I thought drawing was different than other skills, but I certainly bought into the common myth that it is talent alone, and that like magic, the pen either makes art on the first attempt or it doesn’t. Nope. Not true.
So here I am. My sketchbook is messy, disorganized, and very much about learning and working, practice and trying. I want to finally finish those online classes. I want to actually start painting the things I want to paint and sketch, because I finally understand that I’m never going to be “able to” until I actually do it. Gee, I wish I could draw a landscape like this one, means I’m going to have to draw a lot of practice landscapes that don’t hit the mark I’m aiming for, before I get where I want to go.
The evolution of a sketchbook. Raw, real, and full of terrible sketches and mistakes. Which I now know means I’m learning, growing, and just you watch. One of these days, they will actually be recognizable for what I’m trying to capture!
Capturing my life, recording my doings, and my travels, my loves, and my experiences is what I want most to do in my sketchbook. I’m obsessed with documenting life–from photographs, to bullet journals, to the handwritten pages of fountain pen on paper, I have been documenting my life as long as I can remember. Sketching has always been missing, and here I am to add it in at long last.
Welcome to my sketching journey!