Brooklyn Sketch Book Project

For Christmas my husband gave me a gift that I was really excited about – a Brooklyn Sketchbook!  My excitement soon waned as I kept taking the book out of the envelope and putting it back away as I really I had no idea what to draw and was terrified to make the first mark.   This anxiety was made worse because it comes in such beautiful packaging.

Brooklyn Sketchbook Project

I always find it a bit daunting starting a new sketchbook, the fear of screwing up and making a mess of the pristine pages doesn’t seem to go away no matter how many books you fill.  But for my usual sketchbooks I have found a solution that works – I usually just push myself to do a quick sketch midway through the book and for some reason this takes the fear away.   And as the sketch is midway through the book it doesn’t really matter if its dreadful.

I shared a post about this anxiety last year with some ideas as to how you might address this but for some reason the idea of this particular book being submitted to such a great initiative made the fear even greater.

Last weekend I decided to take the plunge and thought I’d deal with the anxiety by opting for a couple of sketches along themes I was really comfortable with so started out with my mini sketches.  My thinking was that I’ve done so many of these when I completed my 100 day art challenge I would be less likely to create a sketch that I wasn’t happy with.

As usual I didn’t start on page 1 but started at the back of the book and all seemed to be going well, I created a sketch I was pretty happy with, but I made the error of applying a little paint wash to the background and to my horror it bled through onto the pages behind.  When I did my 100 day challenge I used so many different sketchbooks – some good quality like little moleskins and other I picked up for a few quid in shops like The Works and Flying Tiger so thought I’d be safe if I kept it to a light wash but no such luck!


I was determined not to let this beat me so after a bit of panic I dug out some of my old sketchbooks and tore out a few pages of other mini sketches I’d completed and glued these onto the reverse of the marked page – disaster sort of diverted!  The papers are a bit crinkled but I’m hoping if I weigh the book down they’ll not look so bad by the time I submit it.

I’ve only completed 2 sketches so far and added 2 older ones so still a way to go.

4 thoughts on “Brooklyn Sketch Book Project

  1. I absolutely adore your work.

    I am EXACTLY the same about starting a new sketchbook, which is probably why I currently have about 6 or 7 that are in pristine condition (if not still in the packaging). I’m currently working almost full time in a menial, but essential job and have no time to sketch/paint etc. When I do come home, I just want to chill and even though I’d LOVE to be able to chill and sketch, the dreaded block appears to have hit me. However, my youngest daughter is on furlough and has been on lockdown for a couple of months now.
    On about day 3 she asked me:
    “Do you have any paper?”
    Do I? Well of course I do.
    She’s well through that sketchbook, which was one of the unopened bunch. Having artistic offspring is a joy to me.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I have 3 kids, all creative, albeit in different ways. My eldest was a cake decorator for years. But it didn’t start with me. My dad went to Art College when he was about 39 and did 5 years there. I left school the same year and went to the same Art School.


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