Sunday, January 6, 2013

The Importance of Sketchbooks



I have been using sketchbooks from a very young age. I have a huge pile of about 20 books that have been filled. They have almost become art journals that have kept an authentic record of my artistic evolution. I am so grateful and glad my mother kept my artworks all these years. Sketchbooks allow us to see the progression of an artist. Many parents do not know or care about this, so when I meet clients for the first introduction lesson, I make it clear that sketchbooks are very, very important.

Experiment with your sketchbook

A sketchbook records an artist’s ideas and thoughts as they are forming. Sketchbooks can be used as a prelude to a painting or just for sketching practice. They are a great way to try out different drawing or painting ideas.


Draw anything and everything at any opportunity. Sketching helps polish up observational skills. Draw ideas, dreams, and reality. Go to museums, the zoo, restaurants and draw. Written notes in a sketchbook can be invaluable to the artist. Do not be afraid to write what is important such as swatches of colour, notes about character or personality of the subject or general comments.

Use different materials such as crayons, watercolor paints, charcoal and color pencils. Collect photographs, napkins, pressed flowers, stamps and receipts to paste in your book. You never know where it could lead you to creatively!

Tearing out pages

No, no, no! I freak out when my students tear pages out of their sketchbooks because it gets lost and thins the book. I beg them to not draw on the back of a drawing in the book. They are only allowed to write their name and the date at the back of a drawing. My younger clients are just learning to write so when they write a name or a the date, it is scrawled across the whole page completely distracting the impact of the drawing.


Finding goodies


I can look back at my old sketchbooks and find an interesting drawing that was previously overlooked. I can then transform it into something usable. Unfinished drawings from years ago can be completed if you find inspiration.


It is a good idea to have a few different types of sketchbooks for different methods of working in. I love these vibrant pink Croxley Sketchpads and once in a while I'll keep a Moleskine.

There you go, sketchbooks are a major deal in my art world. Hopefully these few tips have outlined why sketchbooks are so important. ♥ Quaymberley