Sketchbooks and learning from your mistakes

Sketchbooks and learning from your mistakes

Sketchbooks are an invaluable tool for artists. Sadly, I cannot look at an expensive paints and canvas and proceed to produce a masterpiece! No matter how talented an artist may be, they all need to practise and hone their skills.

trees in sketchbook

These are sketches with acrylic paint and pastel where I am experimenting with weird colors and practicing tree shapes and perspective.

I also think its is extremely important to be able to freely experiment too, so that we can come up with new ideas. And for those of us with children, we are constantly being told that mistakes help grow our brains and this is how we all learn. This is all certainly true for me. I make lots and lots of mistakes and I like to think I learn from them....

watercolor sketch of Joshua Tree

Watercolor sketch of Joshua Tree where I was learning more about how to loosen up my drawing style and how to use watercolors.

When it comes to art, I do believe that Bob Ross was correct in saying there are no mistakes, just 'happy little accidents'. This is why I love sketchbooks - there is  much less pressure to produce anything good when faced with a low cost sketchbook (or scrap paper). I feel I can shove down anything - any medium, any color, any shapes etc. and I am really able to let my imagination go. If I don't like it I can decide why I don't and then move onto the next piece. Sometimes I don't feel like doing any 'real' art but I feel so much better if I can just create something - even if it is just a scribble in one of my sketchbooks. These scribbles can lead to whole new paintings as I am drawn to unusual color combinations, shapes or textures.

 Paint splodges

I have many pages like this where I just throw down paint randomly and sometimes I am inspired (but mostly not).

abstract collage with girtaffes

In this chaotic piece I used some fun wrapping paper with animals and got carried away with art supplies.

I also enjoy using my sketchbook to practise some classic art techniques. Figurative work is always tricky for me but I like to keep practising!

sketches of vintage figures

Here I was practising figures in different poses.

Overall, I think sketchbooks are one of the most important tools for artists. They allow artist to explore techniques and ideas freely without pressure and they are always fun to look back on and see how your artistic style and technique has progressed.

Thank you for reading!


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