I was watching an antiques programme on the television recently and a person brought along a sketchbook for a valuation. Inside, on the first page was the artist’s name, it stopped me in my tracks! I realized in that moment that I had not put my name inside any of my sketchbooks – I made it my first job the following day.
On going through them I was struck once again by the charm and the value of keeping sketchbooks. Most of mine represent certain periods in my life, some of them are full, some contain only a handful of sketches, some are themed but most are of mixed subjects. I sat for a little while looking through them and reflecting on when many of them were done, it’s amazing how much information a simple scribble can contain.
I thought it might be interesting to publish some of these images from time to time and decided to start with some wildlife studies. Many were done in Norfolk, England on bird watching trips, some were done in France while others were done out walking the dog and many were done just because I wanted to. Because of the fragmented nature of the wildlife sketches I decided to make up a montage of the simpler images from various books. Most of my sketchbooks contain images with the idea of creating paintings but that was not the intention in this case, I am not a wildlife artist, they were done just for the pleasure of putting them down on paper though one or two have been used to make lino prints. Reference to the equipment I use and my approach to the use of sketchbooks can be found by following the link here to my blog, The Sketchbook 07-09-2009.