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Sketching Faces: When You Feel You’ve Hit A Plateau

    I sketch a ton of faces. I look back over the years and see how my approach to sketching faces has changed, how it’s constantly evolving. Often students write to me about experiencing a plateau in their drawing efforts. They feel that they have achieved a level of skill at which they remain […]

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Sketching in Family Situations: Creating New Family Contracts

If you desire to sketch at family gatherings and visits but it seems impossible this post is for you. If you already have sketching integrated into your life I suggest you stop reading and go sketch. Recently a blog reader wrote the following to me I love your posts and your portraits! How do you […]

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Project Friday: Go Ahead, Paint on Lightweight Drawing Paper

If there is one thing I would like to communicate to blog readers it’s that you need to go ahead and paint on whatever paper you have at hand. Simply because in the process of making the paint stick to paper that isn’t meant to have wet media on it you learn something about the […]

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Using Only a Few Brush Strokes

Earlier this week I wrote about working quickly with the brush pen and all the benefits of different quick approaches. But you can also work quickly with watercolor washes. You pretty much force yourself to do this if you work with a large flat watercolor brush. (Here I used a 1.5 inch wide brush.) Why […]

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What’s the Deal with the 2019 Celebration of International Fake Journal Month?

In January I decided that after 10 years of a public celebration of International Fake Journal Month I’d end the public portion of this project. You can read about my reasons at the above link to the official blog. So this year there is no button and theme/tagline and most important, nothing for me to […]

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Testing Elements through Doodling

One of the best times to test design elements is when you are warming up. Take a couple moments to make a decorative frame around your warm up sketch. Use more than one approach. Don’t worry about cohesiveness—it’s a warm up sketch. Consider the following: • Make a long enough or large enough area of […]

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Happy New Year 2019

It’s the first day of the New Year! I believe that everyday needs to be greeted as a first day. I believe that you need to do something creative each day. In the 10 plus years I’ve been writing the blog I’ve written about New Year’s Day each year. Here are links to some of […]

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Focusing on Doing and Not on Naming

Several people wrote to me after my last post When Drawing Isn’t Fun. Most said that they found it helpful in starting an internal dialog with themselves about their creative practice. But one of my Urban Sketcher friends Tina Koyama wrote a very important point in her comment on that post: Grief. The grief of letting […]

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When Drawing Isn’t Fun

Recently a student wrote to my Drawing Practice group that she wasn’t sketching daily and wasn’t having fun when she did draw. Despite the fact that what she was drawing looked great and showed that all her hard work was paying off, she couldn’t see the value in it. This can happen to anyone at […]

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Still More about Scribbling

This is part three of a three-part series on some scribbling portraits I’ve been working on. Check Monday’s and Wednesday’s posts from this week for the others. After a few sketches it seemed obvious to me that I needed to try a female subject. I find it difficult to sketch women. Wait, not difficult, simply […]

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