Small Signs of Spring

When art takes a backseat to the rest of my life, I find it helpful to use a grid. Setting up a framework of small squares in my journal allows me the flexibility to fill them as time allows over a period of days or weeks. I started this grid in March, knowing that a hectic schedule lay ahead. This grid started with a set of six squares per page but, as you can see, the squares can be combined vertically or horizontally to fit the subject at hand. I especially like how a grid page can capture so much of a day, week, or month in just a few small spaces.

Tips and Techniques: Set up a grid in pencil with evenly spaced squares and an even amount of white space between them. You don’t have to plan what will go in them. When you have a subject you want to sketch, choose a box and add it. If your subject is quite vertical or horizontal, combine boxes to suit the shape. You can combine as many boxes as you want, or none at all. I tend to skip around the page, based on the shapes, and outline each box at the end.

34 thoughts on “Small Signs of Spring

  1. Inspiring in so many ways….including your thoughts, dates and reflections along with renderings makes the piece more meaningful and encourages me to linger there. I wonder if your birds are completed from photos you took on that day. We live in a wooded acre+ lot with many birds and animals coming through. How do you capture them so well?

  2. Yes, yes indeed, all of it. It’s an art/journal. Have you looked for ramps along your stream or nearby? That would be a fun subject. Also good to eat. Thanks for this wonderful page.
    PS- Oh! the Phoebes

  3. I adore the tiny vignettes …each telling its own story.
    Satisfaction in small spaces. I will try this myself. Thanks Jean.

  4. Oh I just Love Love Love this! I was about to sketch a phoebe in my journal too! I was so excited to see them return. Beautifully done!

  5. A pictorial diary – I love it. The variety in life is celebrated – taxes and skunk cabbage – perfect! 😉 But the memorial services and the quiet daffodils too, and the bird sightings. Phoebes, snow – there you have it: Spring in the northeast! (Oh, just read the comment above – thank you so much, Jean).

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