Currently Browsing: Productivity

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Why Drawing Matters

Drawing matters for a number of reasons. Last week I had a note from a past student who had recently lost her mother. The student had stopped drawing for months. Grief disrupts life in a thousand ways. When I was writing to her I was thinking about my own maternal loss this year, the death […]

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Packing for a Trip or Class

Recently a blog reader who is going to SketchKon (see the note later in this post) wrote to me and asked for tips on packing for such a trip. She wanted to know which supplies to bring and what the perfect pack for carrying supplies might be. Very simply keep the following in mind: • […]

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Warm Ups: Some More Thoughts…

I’ve written about warm ups many times, but readers still often forget how important they are. So I’m sharing some warm up pieces from my journals again today, before I get some more warm ups done and get my day going. My goal with warm ups is to check myself on my ability to correctly […]

Detail of the eye area. Dry strokes of paint stumbled over the top of dry lower layers take texture from the paper and create a fun broken-color effect that helps mimic the texture on a chicken's face.

Everyone Needs a Side Project

A few weeks ago my friend Danny Gregory called me up to discuss my thoughts about projects. Most readers know my Daily Dots—daily drawings of my Alaskan Malamute bitch Dottie made the last 4 and a half years of her  life. But friends and students know that I’m always engaged in whatever the latest project […]

Detail of plum.

In Context—Sketching while Sick

My hiatus has been a bit of a bust. Instead of catching up on my ongoing projects and starting a new one that I really wanted to jump into, I came down with a respiratory bug. I sketch even when I’m ill. Many may think that’s a waste of time and paper when you’re coughing […]

I  find that even a quick sketch of dogs will bring me out of a funk and get me back to focusing on actions I can take to turn things around. Dogs are about living in the present moment. If we can't live with them (and currently I don't have dogs) we can still remember and learn from them as we draw them. (These are two lovely dogs on Sktchy.)

Project Friday: How To Deal with Crappy Days in Your Visual Journal

Here’s a question I’m asked frequently: How do you deal with crappy days in your journal? Not long ago a student explained to me that when she kept a written journal she would often write about the stress and frustration in that journal, but then never look back at it.  She felt that her visual […]

I have a small clearer's caddy—the type of handled open-topped case that people who clean efficiently (professionals and other efficient folks) use to carry their cleaning products and tools from one room to the next. These are available in hardware and home stores, as well as online. This one cost about US$ 8. I cut stiff cardboard dividers to insert into the two main wells. These are held in place with tape on both sides so that they don't move. (See the side of the white pen area.) By keeping similar colors together I can reach quickly for a new pen as needed. Because the caddy is a caddy it has a handle (center piece as you look down). I can pick it up and move from room to room with my markers and use them anywhere I want. (Center partition on the topside contains masking and washi tapes for a project I was working on.)

Storing My Montana Acrylic Markers

I am frequently asked how I store my Montana Acrylic Markers. As you can see from the photo I use a cleaner’s caddy.  I cut stiff cardboard dividers to insert into the two main wells. These dividers are held in place with tape on both sides so that they don’t move. (See the side of […]

Pen and watercolor sketch, with acrylic marker background, done over a note Dick left me, which I'd previously stuck in my journal.

At Least I Wasn’t Abducted By Aliens: Keeping Your Sense of Humor and Productivity

Note: This blog post was originally set to run during the second week of January but technical issues with the blog delayed it. This version was edited for publication today. Anyone who bothered to stop by or call me from October through January this year knew things were tough. I was beyond grumpy because of […]

Letting Things Go, Even in the Pursuit of Goals: The Little Journal That Got Away

Note: This post was originally scheduled to run at the end of December 2017. Due to technical issues with the blog I’m just getting to it now. If you read my blog you’ll know that I keep track of the number of pages that I create each year. I do this because it is a […]

Piecemeal sketch—extra sheet added at base—with wide tipped parallel pen sketch on yellow Fabriano Tiziano paper. I started with purple ink but ran out, and…

Just Keep Going Whether You Run Out of Ink Or…?

Thanks to everyone who weighed in on Facebook and in the blog’s comments section, and in private emails after my February 10th post. It was sad to hear the blog’s mail program is not working. But it was good to have confirmation of my suspicions.  It still isn’t working. I’ve been in contact with the […]

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