Currently Browsing: Journal Practice 269 articles

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In Context: What Goes on the Journal Page?

There are a lot of ways to work out what needs to go down on your journal page. The most obvious way is to think about the overall design and layout of the page or page spread. I see a lot of visual journaling students tie themselves in knots as they compose a page—thinking where […]

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Breathing Room on the Page (or Page Spread)

One of the most important compositional tools you have in a visual journal or sketchbook is the breathing space on the page (or page spread).  The negative space around an image helps define the image through silhouette, and shape recognition. The space will help you correct angles and proportions when you go off—or— if you […]

Detail of the painting so you can see the brush pen sketch lines and the thickness of the watercolor I was using in an opaque manner.

Sketching on Any Old Paper You Have At Hand

Sometimes we can get into our heads. We can spend time telling ourselves all the reasons we can’t take time right now and paint.  As a teacher for over 30 years I think I’ve heard every excuse there is: no space to set up, don’t have the materials I want to work with; I don’t […]

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Let Yourself Push Your Sketch Marks Now and Then

OK, we can’t get the whites of the paper back when we are working in pen and ink (unless we resort to the X-acto blade, or ProWhite gouache), but it’s still a useful endeavor to keep pushing with the lines. I find that working with a dried out pen pushes me to be a little […]

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Sketch People From All Angles

  It’s important to sketch people from all angles. Actually to sketch the SAME person from all angles. If you can’t get out and about ask your housemates (significant other, children, Aged P, guests, etc.) to let you sketch them while they read a book or watch TV. No one around? Not even a dog, […]

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Stubble—I Can’t Help Myself

I just have to maintain a daily diet of sketching stubble. It can be with the Tombow Fudenosuke pen like this sketch, or the Pentel Pocket Brush Pen or the Squeezy brush pens from Pentel, or ANY PEN. I just think stubble is fun to sketch. I suspect it is the 15 years I spent […]

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In Context—Sketch a Little, Chat a Little, Get Back to Sketching.

Hard to believe this is already a year ago.

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Another Potential Journaling Hiccup: The Perfect Time and Place

Blog readers and students often write to me about their hopes and deferred dreams for their journaling and their art life. They live with the hope that if they can “just get through to retirement,” or “Just get through this current crisis [fill in the blank as to what that is]” that the clouds will […]

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The Journal as Workbook

Below is a video which explains my view of the journal, and how I use my journal in my daily practice. Students in my “Drawing Practice: Drawing Live Subjects in Public” class asked me to share it publicly when I shut down my on-line teaching platform at the end of last year. They wanted to […]

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Journal Practice Hiccups?

  I always tell people any day is a great day to start a journal practice. Start.  But I know that many people think it important to have a milestone day like the first of the year for a starting point. If it gets them to start then I’m all for that. As a new […]

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