I don’t know of too many artists that don’t carry a sketchbook with them at all times. Some do incredible work in their books, while others like myself, use it almost as a diary. The bulk of my sketchbooks are filled with “Subway Sketches”. Which is something that was introduced to me by a teacher at Pratt. He or she (sadly I can’t remember what teacher is was) made it a homework assignment to bring in a few pages of our sketchbooks filled with people we drew on the subway. At first it was tough for me. I’d hunch over my sketchbook in a vain attempt to hide what I was doing but as time went by I reached a place where I could just draw without caring who was watching me. Although I do feel weird when the person whom I’m sketching realizes that I’m using them as a figure drawing exercise. A handful of times people have gotten up and walked away after realizing what I was doing but after the hundreds of people I’ve drawn that’s a really rare occurrence.
Unfortunately, working from home for 4 years made it tougher and tougher to fill up my sketchbook. I’d only ride on the train a few times a month but with my job forcing me back into the NYC Rat Race I just finished a great little sketchbook that Ereisa bought me back in 2004. I can’t believe it took me this long to fill up 192 pages but it did. So before I file this little book on the shelf with all my other spent sketchbooks, I thought I’d scan a few choice pages and throw them up here on the bog. Flipping through it’s really fun to see the work go from good to awful to horrendous to bad. It was also pretty wild to see quite a few rants about wanting to get out of lettering. I also did a few streams of conscious comix for the first time, something that I’ll diffidently be doing again in my new sketchbook.
So check out a few random sketches.
After I finish every sketchbook I go through it and write down anything that I did in it that I think I might need and/or want to use later on. There are 3 upcoming NYComix in this sketchbook and they’re noted at the bottom. I also did the Randall Redesigns in this in there.
2. NYComix Volume 2 Mini Comic Cover Ideas
I knew from the start I wanted to do a stencil, but none of these ideas made it very far.
3. Old Man
People get off the train before you can finish drawing all the time. This guy got up right when I started and it morphed into this weird thing.
4. Randall Redesigns
The redesigns just started in here and then went on to a bigger 9x12” sketchbook I use for character designs and page thumbnails for comix. I even do a few pages in that sketchbook instead of on art board. But that’s fairly rare.
Chris Ware’s sketchbooks got me into doing comics in my sketchbook. Something I never considered before. None of these will become more than this, but one will… (Although not the one I’m showing here.)
6. Monk’s Mood
Listening to Jazz on the subway is a favorite pastime of mine. This was done while listening to Thelonious Monk’s “Monk’s Mood.”
Not done on the Subway but at the Midtown Manhattan DMV. I think it was an almost 4 hour wait. The character is “Art” who I guess is becoming my other comic persona…he made an appearance in the first (and so far, only) “LazyComix Presents…” More of the ol’ curmudgeon to come.
8. Subway Sketch
One of the more tolerable examples of my subway sketches. This one done on the way home from my first day at the new job.
So there you have a few excerpts from my recently depleted sketchbook. I’m already 2 pages into a new one. Let’s hope this one doesn’t take almost 3 years to finish. Boy, that’s pathetic. I need to draw more.
In other news I’ve got a few things coming up including a few interviews. One in plain ol’ print and the other a podcast where you can hear me babble for over an hour. More on that stuff to come.
Stay tuned and thanks for reading,