Friday, August 8, 2014

Souvenirs Of Earth

This week of Sketchbook Skool has been especially taxing, but in a good way.  Our teacher, Andrea Joseph, is an amazing illustrator, and I just HAD to buy her book.  Truly something I have to keep looking at frequently.  Maybe once or twice a day.  This week she has pushed us to do intensive sketching with BIC pens, or any ball point pen, or whatever combo of implements we have on hand.  Our last assignment with her was to sketch a collection of objects we might have in the house.  I wandered around our place for a couple days, looking at all the things that might work for that: Jim's little cabinet full of wine corks, wine stoppers, etc., wine glasses, antique silver spoons, what have ya. Beautiful and interesting things. 

I got to thinking about what was important to me, and what I'd like to immortalize.  I know, it doesn't really matter, I'm making a big deal out of it.  Maybe just toss some pasta on a table and grab my pen, right? But knowing how I love to have a little bit of emotional or inspirational connection with my drawings, I picked up various little stones, shells and bits of the natural world that climb into my pockets and come home with me from time to time.  Some have been old friends for decades.  Others, like the peacock feather, remind me of our cat family so recently gone from our lives.  They all looked like what I would take back home with me from this planet as souvenirs.  Or "souvenenirs" as the Other Worldly version of myself misspelled!  

I didn't think I could do the luminous colors and textural surfaces on these justice with BIC pens, I seem to be pretty horrible at using those, and need more practice!  I used a beautiful array of colored pencils Jim's deceased wife had left behind.  Stroke by stroke, the whole thing took maybe four hours.  The journal I sketched this in is an old hand bound journal someone gave me years ago, with ivory-colored paper.  Not good for water media, but really nice for pencil sketching.  There is some pen work in it, too, but not much, sadly.  


  1. Oh my are always amazing! Beautiful! Thrilled to be back in touch!

  2. Thank you, Eric Heather Andersen! So wonderful to be in touch with you, too! I loved your anniversary slide show!

  3. I like what you wrote Elsbeth, especially the part about things finding their way into your pockets. That happens to me all the time. The drawing is lovely and I really like the colors.

    1. Sweet, Joyce! I somehow knew that would be your experience, too.