I’ve been in Spain for the past week and so haven’t been able to make a post in a while. My laptop is also broken which makes it harder to upload and edit photos. Things are still good though. Got my materials list and everything in from Dundee the other day, still hasn’t sunk in that I’m going there in less than a month. Also got my exam results back, an A in Advanced Art – yay :). Been thinking that I should have assigned myself a summer project instead of spending four months aimlessly doodling. I do love to doodle though.

I collected some things when I was in spain, newspapers, tickets, maps and so on. Also took a lot of photos, mostly of graphited walls and aspects of urban decay. I’m intending to make a sketchbook of my time in spain, once my photos are uploaded. Sketchbooks are great for recording this sort of study, random drawings and experiments with textures and materials. Sometimes theyre more interesting than finished pieces I think.

My first real sketchbook was called Ronald. I got him a little over a year ago and carried him everywhere. His purpose was to develop my study of doorways and windows. Sketchbooks are good for noting down something when you’re out, making a quick sketch or developing a drawing on a small scale.

These were done around August 2008 as part of the study of street scenes and doorways. They are early sketches of some previously posted paintings. The first is a college, I used torn up paper with charcoal and paint to get the basic shapes of the piece before going onto a painting. The second is a simple sketch which was also later tried in acrylics.

These are some very rushed sketches, I’d just bought new acrylics and wanted to try them out, so little thought went into the colour. I hadn’t had much experience with acrylic paint at this point so a lot of this sketchbook was seeing what could be done with it. The fourth sketch above is a study of texture, the paint was applied thickly and then scraped off with the end of a brush several times to create the rough wooden frame.

These are just a few early sketches from Ronald, to demonstrate how the sketchbook is a good tool in developing ideas. Sketchbooks are the most personal part of the portfolio, they’re an ongoing study and really just books of thoughts and ideas, I had four in total, though this one was my favourite.

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