15 January, 2019. So we’re snowed in and cleaning up over the weekend, and come across a forgotten and unused sketchbook filled with seriously crummy paper.
The sketchbook is made from banana leaves or palm fronds or something similar…loads of texture and flecks of crud. I figure it’ll probably be like sandpaper on my fountain pen, but decided what the heck, what’ve I got to lose?
Those of you who know me, know I almost always work from life on location, but we were pretty much snowbound for the most part. Another thing we stumbled upon during cleaning was some vacation photos from 2009. (Yes, we need to clean more often.)
Anyway, I made several quick ink sketches on the banana paper (or whatever) using my photos as reference. It was fun looking through images of Scotland from a decade past; memories of particular places and events suddenly felt like they’d happened just yesterday. Even the terror of finding myself on a trail high up in the mountains that required me to do a bit of rock climbing to get to the other side brought back a chill and cold sweat. (Prudently, I returned the way I came up rather than doing the mountaineering thing.)
The long and short of it is that even though I had to keep cleaning off my constantly clogging pen nib, I had a blast trying something new and artistically “wrong.” It was fun forcing my pen to do something it didn’t really want to do, the paper sucked ink out of the reservoir like a sponge, and the unexpected line quality was exciting to watch unfold.