Just an FYI to those who might be thinking about Mustard Seed Mentoring, but you’re on the fence. We close our doors tonight (Thursday) at midnight, but before we do, we’re offering the opportunity to have a full membership for ONE WEEK for $1.00! You can snoop around, join us for a live session and see if this group is right for you and your business.
You can get more details about Mustard Seed Mentoring HERE.
When my mom and I traveled to Europe a couple of years ago, I brought all sorts of art supplies and sketchbooks and ended up doing two sketches at the airport. (Insert eye-roll at self.) I did keep a journal, but I was so disappointed that I let the fear of not living up to my own expectations get in the way of a dream-come-true experience. See how that worked? I was scared of being disappointed and ended up being disappointed anyway!
So, when we went back again last year, I made sure that I took time to sketch and paint. I kept reminding myself that it wasn’t about the result. It was about the process and the experience. It was about pausing, being present and observant, and having a one-of-a-kind souvenir.
So, the very first day, after a long plane ride and a short nap, I sat out on the balcony to enjoy the sounds and smells of Paris, the crisp fall air, and the clear blue sky. And I wrote in my journal and sketched the neighboring egg-shaped roof.
I remember criticizing myself while I was sketching it, but then scolded myself. You’re in Paris on a balcony overlooking the Eiffel tower. Just soak it in and tell that inner negative voice to leave you alone. You’re not sketching something that’s going to hang in a museum! It’s for your own enjoyment. Enjoy it.
And, I tell you what…that helped me embrace my sketchbook and I took time each day to make marks in it.
After our day in Champaign, I painted some of the fields I observed out the car window…
And after a long day romping about the city, I just loosely sketched the clouds as they began to darken in the fading evening light.
The first thing I did after getting settled into Villa Moorings during our Italy leg of the trip was sit on our balcony and sketch. Our balcony was on the second floor, almost in the middle of the picture.
I propped my feel up and tried to capture the mountain view in watercolors.
I still have so much to learn about watercolors, so I experimented with ink lines, pencil lines, no lines, etc. This sketchbook can be a place of learning as well as a memento.
I think I like the fine ink lines to give watercolor some structure…
I also used my sketchbook for painting out ideas when we were painting the antique trunk at Casa Cordati…
On another day, since I had already toured the vineyard at Montecarlo, I opted out of the tour and sat on a bench instead to paint the pretty split staircase and shutters.
My very favorite sketches were some charcoal copies I made of Bruno Cordati’s art…
I love his work and this gave me a chance to really study it.
Trips like this can go by so quickly and I feel like time slowed down as I rendered these. It was just me, my subject, and my pencil or brush. We were zoomed in and in tune. Times like that are rare and sweet.
From an artistic perspective, I learned a lot in just these few sketches and it makes me eager to sketch even more.
If you want to read more posts about my trip and the places that inspired these sketches, you can find all of the details in THIS POST.