I'm a big fan of Moleskine sketchbooks. Mostly because I love love love the paper (if anyone knows if/where you can buy bigger sheets of it, let me know!). But also because I like the way they're bound. The cahiers are flexible, which makes them handy for taking notes during critiques, folding them in half and making the surface sturdier. I promise I'm not being bribed by them to write this (however, if they wanted to give me a lifetime supply of sketchbooks, I definitely wouldn't complain). I just know that for a long time, I would see them at art stores or book stores and wonder why they were more expensive than other sketchbooks. Until I got to art school, and my friend ordered me to take a pencil and just try the paper. Just scribble. Totally worth the price. In case you were wondering.
Remember how I used to think sketchbooks were precious? I still see that first page as being so. It's usually hard for me to just start, right there, on page one. So I fill it with other notes. Like this one, written while brainstorming at the bar with Debbie, 2 nights before my Midyear. Also the night I figured things out.
Since I finally decided to go back to my old photographs of Eleanor Rigbies, purchased at thrift stores and flea markets, I had a lot of thoughts and ideas for what my body of work would become, starting from scratch at that point. But nothing was set in stone. And I had half the amount of time to figure it out. So I was a lot less nervous for my Midyear. I was excited. I knew I didn't have all the answers. I had very few. And I was just hungry for feedback. Which I got. These are some of the notes I took during my critique.
And after it was over, I had to get right back to thinking about my final critiques for 4 studio classes. You know, on top of BFA. I made a lot of lists. To remember everything. Because during BFA year, ideas and projects end up blurred together a lot. And you still have to turn things in.
Somehow, there's always a decent amount of math in my sketchbooks. Measurements, budgets, proportions... They don't tell you that when you apply to art school. Oh, and this is how the posters for SIE started. As a scribble like this. With a ram and a speech bubble.
Without much direction, and only the need to reference found photographs, I began creating characters and narratives, thinking about possible projects.
We have to make proposal books, which address just about every aspect of your BFA project. And I had mine almost done. And then I changed my idea. So I had to make a second one. That was...fun.
That last stretch, of finals week, following Midyears, and just wanting to be done made it hard to concentrate. I began drawing more and more Whimsy Scout scenes. What's Whimsy Scouts? It started with a sleep-deprived Michaela wanting to be camping and making friendship bracelets and merit badges. And all the other scouts would be woodland creatures. Then Debbie joined. I had all sorts of doodles like these hung up in Megastudio. So instead of reading Roland Barthes, I would procrastinate by wishing I was elsewhere.
I made this during one of the all-nighters that week of finals in December. Except I really didn't earn 46 merit badges. I sewed together a book and worked on my proposal.
But I much would have preferred to be in a field of wildflowers giving a bunny a friendship bracelet. Hibernation came soon after this sketch. Thank goodness.