This week I didn’t really get to do as many varied sketches because I was trying to finish up the last sketch in my now completed sketchbook, which is the goth girl you see above (and in case you’re wondering, yes Harrietsugarcookie inspired this sketch just like the witch from last week). I put the limitation of only working on it during my lunch hour at my day job since it forces me to move fast but think quickly on what works and what doesn’t, also I only have the limited tools in my pencil case (2 pens of different sizes, 2 brush pens, an Identi-pen and 1 COPIC marker) so every stroke and proper placement of color matters. Needless to say it took a bit of time, but as final sketches go I’m happy with how it came out and now I can put this book to bed.
Really quickly though since people have asked me about this. The sketchbook I was working in is a Canson brand “180” sketchbook. I really love Canson products and try to buy their brand whenever I can, but sometimes they’re not the best. Their bristol is awesome, but not all of their sketchbooks rock. Case in point, this one. The 180 is a great idea as it lays flat giving you the opportunity to work on the full size, although the downside is that some pens skip unless you put something under the page to give it a bit more weight. Yeah, with Canson a lot of their skechbooks tend to be a bit on the lighter side so not a lot of experimentation, media-wise, can be done. This was a problem on a few of my previous sketches including this one. Another plus is that when you use pencil it doesn’t rub around as badly as, oh say, Strathmore’s sketchbooks, but another negative is the magnetic lock on the book. I really wish they would’ve decided on another way to lock the book because the faux-leather on that magnetic thingy started rubbing off on the edges of the paper and over time ripped off. This little factoid could annoy some people.
Overall I’m not upset that I had a chance to work in this sketchbook. I bought it shortly after I began working at my former job at an art supply store here in New York in July of 2013 and like any good artist I worked in a few pages and promptly chucked it in the closet never to be heard again…..but that was because I got a free Canson Artist Series Field sketchbook (which is now discontinued FYI) from my manager. After I got into the groove of doing daily sketches from that sketchbook and completed it, I came back to my 180 and it got me through the past 6 months of the vicious cycle of getting hired, being let go, finding work, losing work, etc etc (AKA the “what the fuck happened to my life!!??!?” cycle). Trust me it was a rough time that I’m just now getting out of and how apropos that I properly finish the thing that helped me keep some sanity. Remember kids, never doubt the power of drawing or writing!
In any case, this sketchbook was a turning point in my growth as a visual artist and cartoonist capped off by a hell of a swan song sketch, so I ain’t mad at it. The next book I’m working in will be a 3.5 x 5.5 Travelogue sketchbook from Handbook (another forgotten sketchbook that will rise from the ashes), so look forward to the sketches there!
‘Til Next Time