Use it or lose it

Jodi, over at Life In Between, shared her beautiful new sketchbook purchase which inspired me to share about my first (and, so far, only) Moleskine sketchbook.

IMG_0159It was the most expensive sketchbook I’d bought and I was afraid to mess it up so I didn’t draw in it for a while. I finally took the plunge a few years ago (probably after reminding myself that I’ve bought way more expensive watercolor paper and managed to ruin those without consequence) and finished it up last month, filling it up with, among other things, a number of these ink drawings:

FullSizeRender(7)I often worry that my art isn’t good enough, but my confidence was boosted when I attended an illustration workshop and the art director told me to pass the book around so that the other participants could take a look. 🙂

48 thoughts on “Use it or lose it

  1. So glad to have inspired you to share this Teresa ! It is so hard to imagine someone of your talent has such doubts! But I can totally relate. I, however, have never taken an art class since required grade school art so am really starting from scratch. And at 5! Haha! I love following you and other ARTISTS who inspire me daily! 😊

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  2. Then you are doing extremely well, Jodi! I don’t have formal education in fine art either; I just take a class here and there when I have time. I imagine even those with BFA or MFA degrees have self-doubts. :}

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  3. Love it!. And I’m so glad to hear that you took the leap and filled it up. I have not had the courage to get one of those yet, but I am filling up my first Strathmore Mixed media one. I love the 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 size. I’m learning some ‘arty’ things, but mostly I’m learning to just do the art and not judge the art [anyone else remember that from The Artist’s Way..?] and I’ve discovered when I come back to something a few weeks later that it doesn’t suck as much as I thought it did and …AND…I’m seeing more confidence in my work, which is my real goal. Let it suck, but suck with confidence!

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  4. Robin, that was an awesome class you led on The Artist’s Way! I remember it fondly. I swear that buying less expensive sketchbooks are good because then you’re not as afraid to dive in. 🙂 Hooray for your gaining confidence in your work!

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  5. Teresa your art speaks for itself, you are talented and I love your style. I had a nice journal of sketches, I messed the journal up when I decided to sell what was in there. All good fun. Keep creating these sketches are divine, you should do a picture book.

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  6. We all have those doubts. Don’t worry. I love your idea of filling your book with sketches. I have about four moleskins and I’ve only mustered up courage to start using one! I put story ideas, good names, notes in it 🙂

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  7. Your illustrations are lovely! I want to reach through the computer monitor and turn the pages to see more. 😀 You make beautiful art, you are very talented, and you have a wonderful reminder that an instructor thought your work so good they asked you to share with fellow students. Thank you for sharing these. Peace.

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  8. Thanks so much, Kath! Selling the art is good, too. I’ve torn a couple of pages out of this book when someone wanted to buy one of the pieces. It’s the process that’s the best part, right? 🙂

    I would love to do a picture book! I’ve been taking courses and workshops to learn how. 🙂

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  9. Those are the best journals ever, Robin! I love them too! I try to go through several pages a day, and because they’re not so expensive, I don’t mind just letting the mood take me wherever. Plus the paper is divine. I’m not sure I’ll ever take the more expensive route, because knowing me, I would then only want to save it for really nice artwork. Bah humbug lol. That 8×5″ Strathmore mixed media book is made with 100% cotton paper and it is a steal compared to buying the actual (500 series) paper. And it takes all mediums well. I just love it, so nice to see another fan!

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  10. Teresa, your work is beautiful, and would be so in any book you chose to use! I’ve considered a Moleskine several times, but every time the reviews about water media scare me away. It took me time, but it finally found my perfect match in the Strathmore mixed media series, I think, as I mentioned in my comment to Robin, another fan(!) of them. Love them! Anyway, I’m glad you’re enjoying your journal and isn’t it so much fun to finish a book and start on a new one? I can’t wait to have a whole collection of books I’ve filled up. This thought jazzes me probably way more than it should, but so be it lol. In all my life, I’ve never been able to keep a diary or journal. Tried countless times! But until art came along, I’ve never been able to actually DO it. 💜💜💜

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  11. I was trying to think of the brand of sketchbook you use, Laura, when I was writing my post! I had taken the cover off of mine (I only have the pebbly-looking cover now), and I couldn’t remember for the life of me. LOL! I am absolutely going with those from now on because I’ve had the same frustration with bleeding through on the Moleskine as I do with regular sketchbooks. I have to scan the image and print onto watercolor paper if I want to do something more with it than charcoal or graphite.

    I hope you’ll fill up many, many sketchbooks and I look forward to sharing that artistic journey with you! xox

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  12. I’ve only had one instance of very minor bleed- through after filling nearly two of these full and that was my very “expressive” abstract of the other night. I had scratched into the paper several times with a credit card, trying to get some texture, and in retrospect I really beat the heck out of that paper. Lots of emotions being released. :)) Anyway, I 1000% recommend and can’t say enough about that paper and those journals. The only thing is the spiral binding. If that bugs you, they have the same paper in non-spiral as well (just more expensive). I’m glad you’re going to give them a try. I hope you fall for them as I have. Most of my stuff lately has been layers and layers of so many mediums and the paper never fails me. It will buckle just a bit with lots of wet media, but I’ve seen actual watercolor paper do much much worse!

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  13. It’s like with fine china or other nice things that we tend to keep and hoard…it would be sad to die without enjoying the nicer things in life that we already own! 🙂 So, yes, jump in and use your Moleskine, Susan!


  14. I will get to it soon and I look forward to it! Right now, after my Moleskine was finished, I started sketching on a regular old sketchpad (it was before I bought the Strathmore). I want to finish that before moving on. I will let you know! x

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  15. I love your drawings! I think the best basis to improve once own abilities is to put them into question. At least some times.

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  16. Your work is worthy of the most expensive sketchbook ~ so touching, your illustrations. Really sweet. And you know how to write in Chinese – wow. Impressive. Are you Chinese? I have to read your profile and learn more about you. Glad to become your friend!

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