Thursday, January 19, 2012

Always Bring Your Sketchbook

Here's a comic I scribbled in my current sketchbook a week or so ago, forgot about, and rediscovered today:

I’ve posted before about the importance of sketching for the artist -how, like sleep, it is a restorative activity that is sometime tempting to skimp on. But what about the artist’s sketchbook? If sketching is likened to sleeping, then your sketchbook is the bed you sleep on. Do you prefer a tattered bedroll that travels along on your adventures, or a luxurious mountain of comfortable quilts?

There’s definitely something to be said for beautiful leather-bound sketchbooks with quality art paper. They travel well, and when you pull something like that out of your bag you feel every inch the artist. But I tend to be a little precious about the pages, and a little less inclined to spontaneity. For me most of the best ideas come unexpectedly.

Lately I’e been filling up big old Strathmore series 400 sketchpads. At 8X11 inches and 100 sheets I usually feel like I can let myself go a bit, worry less about “wasting” pages and just keep the pen moving and the ideas flowing and see what pops up.

A lot of what pops up is rather silly, but sometimes the silly stuff is the best.



10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ben: Can your Mama have a copy of the sketch of yourself? All of your sketches are fabulous, but that one is really outstanding to me.....since it is of you.Wait til you see my funny little car! There is certainly not another like it in the world! Thank you so much.
Love, Mama

Ben Hatke said...

Aw, there's my mom commenting on my blog!
You can have the original, Mama. Remind me and I'll cut it out of my sketchbook for you.

mordicai said...

Whenever I feel down in the dumps, my wife asks-- "are you hungry?" & that is usually why. If not, she asks "are you sleepy?" & that is usually why. If not, she asks "are you sick?" & that is why.

I just can't figure out how emotions work! Some people insist there is such a thing as "sad" & it is different from "hungry" or "sick" but I can't tell how.

Connie said...

I really enjoy your work, Ben - and your posts have been such an inspiration. Particular this reminder about process and journey - something I'm on myself. Thanks and cheers to being enroute!

Ben Hatke said...

Aw, thanks for your comment, Connie! Sometimes I wonder how much people enjoy my thoughts aobut process and discovery or if they would rather I just post a comic or picture and have done with it.

Sharon said...

I enjoy your thoughts and your art work and to watch your thought process. Being rational without creativity is boring. I enjoy your creativity in your thought and in your art. A true lefty.

Sweet Enemy said...

Ben, I look forward to your posts too, especially when you're showing the process. That's what I really get into when I'm talking with other artists, so please keep sharing!

Your ink & watercolor combos, by the way, consistently knock my socks off. I'd say "it ain't fair!" but I know I'd be far better off doing some more sketching myself...

Ben Hatke said...

More process stuff to come!

Abigail said...

That Batman sketch had me laughing out loud; hilarious.

Ben Hatke said...

Ha ha! Thanks Abigail! That one made Anna laugh too.