Sketchbook Project

A friend and colleague, Sara Vipond, gave me a sketchbook from the ongoing Brooklyn Art Library Sketchbook Project. We joked that we would be finishing these down to the wire. True, my sketchbook is postmarked August 13, 2020, two days before the deadline. Eventually the sketchbook will be digitized.

One of the prompts for this series (16) is monster. Coincidentally, my son was reading Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein during the time I worked on this project. I wanted to ask questions about how we construct the idea of who is a monster and who is not. When do we become a monster? It includes, attached to one of the pages, a packet of brass brads to construct paper dolls from the pages.

Arms. Mostly.

Maybe we are all monsters.
Perhaps we are not monster enough.

Cut out.
Poke holes.
Assemble with brads.

A sampling of pages:


Black, paper, 10.75 x 14 cm (4.25 x 5.5 in), 2020


“I am making a small piece of art for you and will mail it when I have it ready. : )

I was thinking about the colour black after we met in the park and quite frankly sat far too closely together. We were definitely not maintaining a 2m distance. I had no trouble thinking of other positive associations for black. In the black. Black Friday. Black tea. Black belt. Black Power. Little black book (lovers keep little black books, or is that rapists, not sure, now that I think about it). And thinking of how black is also enveloping and so black could be seen as comforting. Then there was “Black Out Tuesday” and there was some criticism about it visually creating a huge void because people were stupidly using the black lives matter hashtag, when the goal was to center and bring forward black voices. Then I thought about black also being an amalgamation of colour. Black is the absence of colour in the light spectrum, but when dealing with pigments black is all of them. So not a void, but a gathering of sorts.”
From an email dated June 5, 2020, edited for clarity.

Screen capture, Unceded K’ómoks Territory,, June 7, 2020

January Drawing Challenge

For the month of January, I participated in the Comox Valley Arts, a community arts council, 30-Day Drawing Challenge. I used a free app: You Doodle, and my finger on an iPad. This is a selection from the 30 days.

Prompt: a resolution or a dream.
Prompt: a comic strip.
Prompt: light & shadow – practice your shading.
Prompt: something scary.
Prompt: a whale.
Prompt: a place you’d love to see – try using perspective.
Prompt: something retro/vintage.
Prompt: something from the utensil drawer.
Prompt: a day in the snow.
Prompt: your comfort food.
Prompt: something tropical – a flamingo perhaps.
Prompt: a monster.
Prompt: a haiku (make or borrow one) – text art exercise.
Prompt: things you find in a river.
Prompt: a chair – try using foreshortening.
Prompt: something drawn while blindfolded or using blind contour.
Prompt: a treasure map, and something in flight (combination of two prompts).