Tag Archives: sketchbook

Playing in the journal

Feather (papercut)
I have vague painting ideas floating around the corners of my mind. I’m trying to gently tease them out by playing in my studio journal, which is the repository of random thoughts, quotes from books I read, brochures from exhibitions I went to, family photos, letters from friends, notes on the art materials and craft projects. I use it very sporadically, but reading Gwen Diehn‘s “The Decorated Page” makes me want to pull it out and record something in it everyday. I usually don’t show it to others, but thought you may enjoy having a glance at this page created using watercolours, paper-cut and Sunprint feather prints.
Art Journal Page


In the Garden

Hello! The re-instalment of the OS went well and I seem to have a working laptop again, though I’m still installing all the applications I use and changing settings to get everything the way I like it.

In between my battles with the laptop, I was doing some gardening, though the weather is so unusually warm that I suspect I should’ve planted many more veggies few weeks ago. I worry that if the weather keeps on breaking all the top temperature records most of my plants will die from the heat.

At the moment everything changes so quickly: a week ago I sketched the apple blossoms and now they are completely gone. (Please excuse the blurred edges – I couldn’t get my sketchbook to lie flat in the scanner)
Sketch of Apple Tree Blossom

Winsor & Newton watercolour in Strathmore 400 Series sketchbook

Photo of Spent Apple Blossoms
I spotted this gorgeous lizard (could be Shingleback) at the back of the garden a week ago and yesterday saw another smaller one, but was too slow to take the photo.
Shingleback Lizard
Head of Shingleback Lizard
I enjoy gardening, but the main reason for attempting to grow food is to show my kids how much works goes into it, to get them excited about the fresh produce and to encourage them to try new food. This spring my kids, who act like I’m poisoning them whenever they spot any green herbs or leaves in their food, tried some of the spinach from the garden and the oldest asked me to add spinach to her school-lunch sandwiches. Therefore I declare this growing season a success no matter what happens next.
photo of growing  spinach
photo of lettuce
Today I planted tomatoes and couldn’t resist making a quick ink sketch.
Sketch  of tomato plant

Lamy Safari pen with DeAtramentis Archive Ink in Strathmore 400 Series sketchbook

There is so much more going on in the garden (flowers, bees, birds) – maybe I’ll post a garden update once a week. What do you think?


No, I didn’t paint during the trip to Melbourne. Looks like I still need to have my daily routines around me to keep me painting every day. Last night and today I added another cactus and two succulents to this page.
Watercolour sketch of succulents

Winsor & Newton watercolour in Strathmore 400 Series sketchbook (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

I have a big succulent collection (they are easy to propagate, easy to look after and the kids love them), so there are still plenty to paint. I may be able to fit another two to this page.

Away for few days

This is all I managed to do yesterday.
Pen sketch of few suburban houses

Lamy Safari pen with DeAtramentis Archive Ink in Fabriano Venezia sketchbook.

I was hoping to paint in the evening after everyone is in bed, but the youngest, who was sleeping beautifully lately, just wouldn’t fall asleep.
I’m off to Melbourne with the family for few days. I’ll bring some art materials with me and will try to find time to paint, but won’t be able to blog until Monday. I may post an occasional photo in my Instagram account.

All sort of leaves

Yesterday I sketched some of the changes happening in the garden. (Both spinach and peas are growing well thanks to the warmer days). Today I planted few more things.
Garden sketches

Lamy Safari pen with DeAtramentis Archive Ink and Winsor & Newton Cotman watercolour in Strathmore 400 Series sketchbook

I also collected some flowering eucalyptus branches and painted one of them quickly, before the flowers die & leaves dry.
Watercolour of Eucalyptus Leaves

Winsor & Newton Cotman watercolours on Arches medium watercolour paper (10.5 x 15 cm)

When I started doing 30 paintings in 30 days challenge, I completely forgot about the school holidays, which started on Friday. I love spending time with my kids, but after a full day of fun I sometimes feel exhausted and ready to go to bed even before the kids. So next 10 days will be interesting. I’m still planning to paint everyday, but I’m not sure if I’ll be posting my paintings every day.

Warmth (at last)

24 degrees outside! (75 Fahrenheit according to the online converter) It was warmer outside than inside the house, so I went to the garden to sketch the progress of spring – there is a shower of white petals and the fresh green leaves are coming out.
Watercolour sketch of new spring leaves

Winsor & Newton watercolour in Strathmore 400 Series sketchbook

First day of spring

In the morning the grass was covered in frost. Yet the sky was breathtakingly blue and the day slowly warmed up. I got out into the garden to prepare the garden beds and to plant peas.
Spring Blossoms Watercolour

Winsor & Newton watercolours on Daler-Rowney watercolour postcard (A6)

The sun shone, the birds flitted about, the bees buzzed in the blossoms-covered tree and I shed layers of jumpers as I worked.
Spring Blossoms Watercolour

Winsor & Newton watercolours on Daler-Rowney watercolour postcard (A6)

For weeks there were signs of spring coming: first daffodils, occasional glimpse of a butterfly, hanging the washing outside for the first time in weeks, magpies gathering together and singing their beautiful songs.
Sketchbook pages - Signs of Spring

Winsor & Newton watercolours in Strathmore 400 Series sketchbook (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

And now everything is bursting with new life, flowers, noise. I’m so glad to welcome you back spring.