Monday, February 21, 2011

First stop: Brooklyn!

A while ago I blogged about how Kim and I were participating in 'The Sketchbook Project'. Finally, it's hit the road. First stop: Brooklyn. It's a little bit strange to think our little moleskins have made it all the way to the U.S. of A and are sitting on shelves with thousands of other books waiting to be browsed. We get sent an email to notify us every time our books get checked out. And checked out they have! It's exciting to think that strangers have opened the same pages we filled at the end of last year.

When we signed up to this project we thought it would be a bit of fun and a chance to experiment with sketching, and with different styles and mediums. And it was fun. It was. But it was also hard. Because it's hard to fill a whole sketchbook in a limited amount of time whilst also trying to keep the theme in mind. Some pages we laboured over. Others, we scooted over. But all in all the great accomplishment was actually finishing the book, which encouraged us to continue working in sketchbooks.

One thing I discovered was that instead of freeing me to experiment, the knowledge that that little book was going to be sent off and potentially viewed, actually made it harder because I suddenly felt that each drawing had to be 'finished'. It was impossible to achieve the level of finish I would have liked in the time required, but funnily enough, some of my favourite sketches came from trying something new. Like this:


I know some of my favourite sketches of Kim's are done in a style that was new to him too (I just love that kid in the middle):


My theme was: 'Make mine a double' which I interpreted very loosely. My idea was to draw two of a thing across each double-spread, which I sort of did. But to avoid boredom, sometimes I drew two things from the same location. That is, two different things. Kim stuck to his theme sometimes ('Capture the flag') and sometimes not. But it was good to have a starting point at least, instead of the dread of the blank page and no ideas.

Here are some more images from our sketchbooks:

Sketchbook cover. Jodi Wiley.

Jodi Wiley

Jodi Wiley

Kim Wiley

Kim Wiley

Kim Wiley

If you want to have a look at some of the other stuff that's been submitted go here. There's cute, there's quirky, there's experimental, and there's the utterly breathtaking.