My urban sketching journey began August 19, 2014. I used a black pen of some sort and colored pencils in a small sketchbook from India that had bad-smelling paper. It was actually a horizontal format, but I cut it to fit in a newer sketchbook. You can see the roughness and hesitancy of the technique but I was hooked! There was something so fun about sketching on location…
An entry in my sketchbook just two days later (August 21) wondered the following questions:
I sketched from life every day?
I loved drawing so much I quit painting?
I do drawing just for fun and no other reason?
I draw and draw. Where will I be? What if? What if?”
At the time I was into serious painting and pastels. Sketching was just something I did as a step in a process, a start of a painting. This new way of working, where the SKETCH becomes the work of art… now this was something different for my mind to wrap around.
The year of 2019 has been a pivotal year for me as an artist. I have been in galleries, shows, sold artwork, made note cards, and hung out with artists over the years and developed my craft. But I revisited the questions from August 21, 2014 a couple years ago, and they nagged at me. I so enjoyed urban sketching, but I was afraid to let my other “art life” go. Finally a year ago, I decided to follow my passion. In March of this year I left my two galleries, quit making frame-able art, and decided to trade shows and sales in for a sketchbook and pens and watercolors. And I haven’t regretted a moment of it!
I selected a few of my favorite sketches for 2019. These show me how far my work has gone, how I have improved, and skills I still need to develop. Whether they were done in a fish market, on a plane, in a cold car, on a beach, under a tree, or in a myriad of other places, they are my experiences. I want to show beginner sketchers that there is hope. That you will improve. My first sketch over five years ago is very different than the ones I am able to do today. But it has taken hundreds of sketches to get there. So I offer encouragement, and if I can do it, so can you! Thank you so much for all the comments you have posted and all the entries you have read on my blog. May 2020 be a new year to try new things, to push ourselves in our sketching, to try the things that scare us, and to follow our passions wherever they lead us!