I Did a Doodle and I Don’t Care!

hand-drawn-abstract-background-vector-illustration_MkTCJGuO_LHave you doodled lately? Well you should and regularly at that. I saw a Stefan Bauman video (below) a few months ago and it struck a cord. Like most people, I think a sketchbook is just a sketchbook, right? Something you draw in and use to try to improve through practice or just draw anything that strikes your fancy. Simple. Or is it? Actually, there is a lot of negative psychology associated with regular sketching in a sketchbook. What do I draw? How often should I draw? My sketches look terrible. Shouldn’t my book be a gallery of my best drawing work? blah, blah, blah. Welcome to the doodle sketchbook.

I’m convinced that all artists should have a sketchbook that they set aside for inconsequential doodling. Let me ‘splain. What happens when you doodle? You’re usually doing something else like talking on the phone or listening to boring conversation right? You don’t think much about what you’re doodling, you just draw. What happens when you’re done? The envelope, back of the napkin or edge of your note taking eventually goes in the dumper. Who cares? Enter the doodle sketchbook. Have at your disposal at least one sketchbook designated for “who cares” doodling. Not a really nice or expensive book just any old cheap drawing pad. The drawings can still be purposeful or directed towards specific subjects or practice like any regular sketchbook, the difference is, its more like a scratchpad you keep around but assign no artistic value. You aren’t trying to create great art and you don’t care about the results. This is KEY. In fact, If you’re intimidated by sharing your work, you should probably just tell yourself in advance that this book won’t be shown to anybody. That frees you from the hesitation of getting started or the angst of having your work judged. Bottom line? Your drawing will improve day by day because you’re more likely to draw. No kidding. Keep the book in tact and when you reach the last page you might be amazed at how far you’ve come.


3-Layer Watercolor Landscape Challenge w/Postings

Hello Minders,

Last week I posted a YouTube video with a simple challenge. If you haven’t seen it, here’s the video again so you can take part. I’ve also reposted the guidelines for the challenge which are simple and flexible and meant to be a quick painting starter for which you don’t need to do a lot of planning and drawing unless you want to. At the bottom of this post I’ve included a Tagboard link so you can see some of the posts from other viewers who’ve already participated. This interaction has been really fun to see and there have been a lot of great posts and ideas. So keep on painting and posting. There is no immediate deadline so as long a people want to keep tagging their posts this will continue.

Challenge Guidelines

1. It should be recognizable as a landscape with 3 discernible layers representing foreground, middle ground and background. You don’t have to paint them in any specific order. These three layers do not have to include the sky.

2. Layers can be any size, width or shape. They can contain textures, water, tree lines, fields, buildings, rock formations, or any other landscape elements you can think of. Elements from one layer such as trees or a house, can appear to break the line and overlap a layer behind it.

3. Layers can be any color but work on good foreground to distance scale and Aerial Perspective (closer objects are warmer and more contrasty, the more distant they are, the cooler, less detailed and lower their contrast).

4. Draw it out on your paper ahead of time if you wish but you don’t have too. Just start painting if you prefer.

5. Painting from reference such as photo reference is fine but keep it quick and simple and try to paint more than one.

Have fun!

***Share your work with me and other Minders on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook with hashtag #tmowatercolor I’ll be monitoring the hashtag on all three networks and looking for my favorites.***

Click below to see the Tagboard gallery of other participants work so far. Tagboard doesn’t always bring in every post perfectly so I apologize if it somehow missed yours. I will try to refresh this board from time to time.

tagboard pic


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Baby-Step Art

I discovered a long time ago that, for me, the most difficult part of completing any personal art project is getting started (thankfully, this is not true of paid assignments where deadlines and money tend to motivate me). I’ve been known to put off a personal painting for months because of not having the time I want, being too tired, having too many distractions or just the general environment for getting prepared wasn’t right. Huh?! I know, I don’t get myself sometimes. But then again maybe you can relate. What works for me? Baby steps! Thats right! I have to go no further than the movie What About Bob to find an answer. Don’t laugh. The approach has gotten me through many a project. If I do something, ANYTHING towards getting started no matter how small, rather than look at the project in its entirety, before I know it I’m finished. Maybe its just getting out my paints and brushes or stretching the paper or getting started on the drawing or just finishing the nose instead of the whole face. Sometimes they can even be microsteps. Maybe I’m just a big baby. Anyway, whatever process works for YOU and makes YOUR art happen? Do that!