Tuesday, June 17, 2014

How to Fill a Book (and a Giveaway)

Sketchbook, notebook, diary, journal… I have always wanted to hold in my hand a complete book filled with my thoughts, notes, sketches and/or art. But until recently, I was going about it all wrong. Once, I did completely fill a journal/diary. It felt somewhat satisfying but something about it didn't feel thorough. Although I didn't realize it then, what felt wrong was that it didn't contain any doodles or sketches.  When I tried to keep a sketchbook, I felt my work looked forced, flat and lifeless. Up until very recently, I kept these ~ a sketchbook, a journal, and a spiral bound for lists. When the number of things in a book that I didn't like grossly outweighed the morsels I did, I would go through them, and tear out pages…I would save drawings that I was happy with, of a thought that I felt I had captured well, of the list I needed. All the pages I wasn't happy with were tossed and the blank pages were left. The poor books would end up looking like a binder- just two hard covers leaning into one another left with some blank pages and a bunch of raw edges along the binding inside. 

Well, now I have one book. It is for everything. I have not torn out one page and I am well on my way to filling it up. How did I do it? I started simply. Most often, the page starts as a list (grocery, things to do…) then it may get a quote or something that made me smile that I don’t want to forget. Days later that same page may be revisited with some paint covering the list I don’t need anymore or something I wrote that I don’t feel needs to be read again. It is messy, full of layers. I love it… when I use it as a sketchbook my art feels more alive.  When I need a list, I know right where it is. And, I have never had a journal for my thoughts that I have felt more comfortable with.   

Here are some bits of it…




I would like to give away a notebook for you to fill. If you would like to be entered to win it, leave a comment. A winner will be announced here on Monday 6/23. ♥

***The winner(s) are both of you who commented! :) 



  1. Nate and Anne ADORE this. (Nate would not use the word "adore", but he agrees with the sentiment). We would love to be in the drawing for the notebook.

  2. The 2-page spread with all the circles is awesome! And I just now noticed, after many looks at all the pictures, that the can/glass-ring people are a boy and girl holding hands.

    I have also been getting away from keeping separate notebooks for different content. Definitely works better that way and lets the ideas flow less restrictive-like. For even as much as I used to attempt keeping content segregated to their own notebook, for the sake of organization, they would get all mixed up anyway. Sounds like we had the same reasons for learning to love... what... jumblebinders... clusterbooks...? Got any good ones?

    A good compromise I reached with my overly-systematic brain was to number the pages. Then a simple table of contents on the first page allows quick reference to where the gems are. Though with a notebook like yours, searching by slowly perusing would be even better than knowing where everything is!

  3. Thank you David. I like Jumblebinders! Clusterbooks cracks me up.