Art Journals, sketches, TV sketches, watercolors. Read: guilty pleasures, fixations and obsessions.

Posts tagged “Moleskine

A Good Soaking

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Noodler’s Bulletproof Black in a Lamy Vista, EF and DS & WN watercolors in an A5 Moleskine watercolor notebook. Windham, Maine.

I am now officially a fan of those cheesy “expands by an amazing 600%” sponge toys! So much fun documenting the transformation and prodding the jelly-like and slimy critter with a stick to adjust its position in the vase. Guess I’m just one of those people who never really grew up. It doesn’t take much to amuse me.

Here’s my second sketch of Stego in his early stages of expansion. Finally, he grew so long and heavy that his tail busted under the soggy dino’s weight. Yesterday, I tenderly pulled him from his bath and cobbled his slick tail back on with a toothpick (ouch!). Now he’s on a platter and enjoying a small snack. A good soaking apparently made Stego so very hungry. If it warms up tomorrow, I’ll grab a chair on the porch and sketch’im again as he withers.

Very soon, I shall plunge his companion, Chandra the Sea Star, into an appropriate vessel and observe her progress with pen in hand. What do sea stars eat, anyhow?

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Stego. Saurus.

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Graphite and DS watercolor in a 3.5 x 5.5″ watercolor Moleskine book. Windham, ME

My sister-in-law gave me a couple of expanding creatures last week and it’s been too cold to do anything but sit in my idling car with the defrost and the heated seat blasting. Warmer weather started (exactly) today and I scheduled front porch time for hanging out and sketching. I filled a huge vase with water and dropped the stegosaurus in and sketched away while sipping iced coffee.

Summer is here and not a moment too soon.


Sensory Memory

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Noodler’s Bulletproof Black in a Lamy Vista EF, WN and DS watercolors in an A5 Moleskine watercolor book. Lake Placid, FL.

While visiting my mom at her new “55 Plus” community in central Florida last week, I became a frequent clubhouse pool guest. Nobody asked me who I was, probably because I pinned the guest i.d. tag on the outside of my tote bag. But I could tell a few of them just barely resisted the urge to saunter up and ask, “…and who are your people?” I feigned nonchalance and set myself up in a cabana to sketch and sip a brimming tankard of iced sun tea after a leisurely soak in the bathtub temperature pool.

Ahhhh, sensory memory is serving me well right now. I can close my eyes and feel the hot sun on my toes as I listen to the ugly New England holiday weekend forecast which calls for highs in the 50s and insistent rain.


Because I’m the Leprechaun!

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Noodler’s Bulletproof black, watercolor pencils, watercolors on A5 Moleskine watercolor journal.
16 March, 2013. Windham, ME.

Wish I’d bought two of these punching Leprechaun pens at the dime store last month, because I gave this to the hostess at her St. Patrick’s Day party last Saturday. (Great party, though!) Every time I look at the face on this sketch, I think of the comedian Chris Rock. Come to think of it, he does kind of remind me of a Leprechaun, somehow.

And then my mind goes down the association tunnel and quickly lands on a certain Saturday Night Live skit involving Wayne, Garth and a flashlight.


Angel on My Shoulder

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Angst, pencil and Daniel Smith watercolors in 3.5×5.5″ Moleskine watercolor
notebook. Mirror self-portrait, Windham, Maine. 19 Feb. 2013.

Feeling restless this winter. Don’t want to go to bed at a reasonable hour and don’t want to get out of bed in the morning because I stayed up too late. Activities that usually got me to spring out of bed weren’t motivation enough anymore. I was feeling mopey and sluggish and looking grey faced and haggard. I’ve gotten winter depression before, but it snuck up on me this year and hit me like a ton of bricks.

Tuesday morning the angel on my shoulder must have whispered into my ear, because all at once I thought, “Ah-hah! It’s Seasonal Affective Disorder!” This explained my arty dry spell; I needed to use my neglected stash of pencils, pens, ink and beautiful watercolors to find my way back. Before I had even brushed my teeth, I was looking in the mirror and scratching out a self portrait. I saw evidence of my state of mind. When I looked at the finished sketch again Tuesday afternoon, I felt like the spell was broken. I’d nudged my downward spiral upward and outward just by picking up my tiny Moleskine watercolor notebook and a pencil.

Thankfully, I’m much better now. Realizing that I am experiencing symptoms of S.A.D. seems to be half the battle for me. I’m trying every trick in the book to claw my way toward spring with a genuine smile on my face: Yoga, meditation, chocolate, extra Vitamin D3, drinking plenty of water and — most importantly  for me — continuing to express my feelings with art supplies.


Filling In

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Noodler’s Bulletproof Black in a leaky Pilot Penmanship and watercolor
A5 Moleskine watercolor notebook. 13 Oct. 2012

Looking back at my sketchbooks and seeing the huge gap of time where I neglected to post my sketching efforts, I’ve decided to try to fill in the gaps with drawing experiences that made me especially happy. The inference is that some sketch sessions don’t make me feel great. Although that’s unfortunately true, those grumpy sessions are few and far between.

This Portland (Maine) Harbor sketch was really fun to do. I took the footpath from East End Beach to get a view of the Ocean Gateway Terminal, where a huge cruise ship was disgorging hungry passengers to the many excellent Old Port restaurants. I’m a bit shy when sketching alone in public, so I try not to attract attention and don’t make a big production of whipping out my drawing supplies. This day, I had hardly put pencil to paper to block in the basics in my notebook when I was interrupted by a friendly cruise ship couple who wanted to have a look at my work!


Opposites Attract

Johnson Bros. “Indies” pattern sugar bowl. Ink and watercolor on Moleskine watercolor notebook.
6 September, 2012.

Aiming for a fast and loose sketch, I cast my eye about for inspiration. Of course, my desire for detail superseded my plan and guided my gaze to the china cabinet. There were the pretty blue and white Indies plates. Ah! The sugar bowl would be fun to sketch, I thought to myself. After I got the bowl settled in the middle of the kitchen table, I queued up a Supernatural episode on Netflix and started drawing while Sam and Dean raced about saving people and “ganking” demons.

Mostly, I listen to music when I sketch. I don’t know what impulse led me to put on my guilty pleasure, Supernatural, while drawing, but it’s not lost on me that I was depicting something very fragile and light against a heavy background of tongue-in-cheek television horror. Think I won this battle, though. I’m quite happy with the resulting delicate sketch of our pretty sugar bowl. Maybe that old saying is true: opposites attract.