Currently Browsing: Backstory

First page spread for 2018—a hardbound journal that is made with Stonehenge Aqua 140 lb. Cold Press watercolor paper. (Journal approx. 8 x 8 inches square.)

In Context: Snow Piles

Typically on New Year’s Day I go and sketch at Como Zoo. This year, it seemed impractical to try to park (Como is always crowded on New Year’s Day), walk the long distance to the entry, walk to the Aquatic building (where I could sketch puffins), and reverse the process while keeping my toe warm […]

My sketch of Dick when I was in the emergency. I can see by the line that it is less fluid than normal, stopping almost artificially and turning at various points in a way I don't usually do. Additional there are restatements that I've obviously zoned out in—making more and more marks in one area instead of balancing marks across the surface. And there are several places where I can see and remember I made marks even though I was telling myself, "Don't." I just couldn't hear myself through the pain.

Why Drawing Practice Matters and What Your Line Can Tell You

Readers of my blog know that I love observing my process. I can’t help myself. Even during emergencies. I think you can learn a lot about yourself and find ways to always sketch. On November 19 I fell in a friend’s foyer. I was rushing across the foyer to my fanny pack to change my […]


The Online Class Schedule for 2018 Is Up!

  I’m sorry there haven’t been any new posts for a couple weeks! There were problems with the blog’s loading speed and some other issues so I had to have someone fix all that. I think the blog is now working the way it should. I’m able to work faster to create posts, and the […]

The large, about 9 x 11 inch Japanese Lined Journal that I love to sketch in with the Pentel Brush Pen and Acrylic Markers. Carl Too is standing around watching the paper dry.

What’s on the Table?—The Curl of the Paper

I just love working in my favorite Japanese Lined Journals from APICA. The paper loves the Pentel Brush Pen. Sometimes I work in gouache on this paper, but sometimes I leave the sketch as is and turn the page. Other times I put in an acrylic marker background. I used an orange 15mm wide Montana […]

The first sketch I made on World Beard Day. I got a bit of a late start. I started large—this is about 12 x 18 inches, Pentel Brush pen and watercolor, with an acrylic marker background. For all my portraits I was using muses in the Sktchy App. So many great bearded men who post photos of themselves for us to sketch!

No Shave November

Since I’m so interested in drawing beards I’m a little disappointed in myself that I didn’t keep track that “No Shave November” is going on. This is an event that seeks to raise cancer awareness and also raise money for cancer research. You can read all about it at the link. I was going to […]

All my binding methods can be done at home without any special equipment. I stack my books with heavy art books as weights, there are also some bricks on the top of the stack that didn't make it into the photo. When I'm done binding everything gets put back on the shelves and it's life as normal.

New Adventures in Book Binding

It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to add a new entry into this series of posts started way back at the beginning of my blog! A shoulder injury has kept me from binding batches of books. I’ve bound a book now and then so I’d have a special Minnesota State Fair Journal, […]

Portrait 1

Making A Color Chart To Test My 2017 Fall Watercolor Box

Recently I purchased the new fall Schmincke Pan Watercolor Set at Wet Paint. This contains different colors than the one I purchased in the spring, added colors to, and then took to the Minnesota State Fair. While recovering from bronchitis I had some time on my hands so I decided to make a color chart […]

Diners at one of my favorite restaurants—while I wait for my take-out order to be ready. (In the smallest Hahnemühle Nostalgie journal with a .1 Staedtler Pigment Liner.

Drawing Practice: Two Things to Try When You’re Sick

We all catch a cold, come down with the flu, sprain a muscle or two, even break a bone now and then. But it’s still important to keep up with your drawing habit. I had a particularly rough time keeping up my daily practice the past few weeks. A cold went to bronchitis and my […]

Working on a toned background.

In Context—Just Draw

In the “In-Context Series” I promised I wouldn’t write a whole lot of text. Just let the page spread stand for itself, but sometimes I feel the need to say a little more, and include a detail image. This type of spread is what you often see in my journals: a prepainted page with a […]

Sketching with the Platinum Carbon Black fountain pen (containing that ink) in an 8 x 10 inch journal. While coughing…

In Context—Working in a Series While Coughing

I managed to catch a cold bug and then come down with bronchitis so coughing has made sketching a bit difficult this fall. (Gasp, there have even been some missed days!) Today’s image is an example of the type of thing I’ve been up to. Thank goodness for the Sktchy App when you’re ill. So […]

Close Cookmode