my sketchbooks

I can’t imagine not drawing. I draw because I love to draw. It helps me observe and process visual ideas. About 50% of what I draw is pure fantasy, the other 50% is drawn from observation or from memory. What goes into my sketchbook is not overly planned. The results are often surprising to me, actually.

This shows the type of sketchbook I have used for many years. The format is slightly bigger than my hand, and it travels with me everywhere.

The pen I use is called a sharpie superfine. Thank God those were invented. I buy them by the dozen. A sharpie doesn’t fade and it is waterproof, so I don’t need to worry that the ink drawings will run together if the pages get a little water on them.


where do ideas…

ideas start sometimes from a need, from having something we keep bumping up against. Problem-inspired ideas can be the first step in a process to make us more productive and see new possibilities.

Yet other ideas seem to blossom on their own accord – from inspiration – they too become a notion of the possible.




I like ideas.
ideas are useful.
Some ideas are a pain – because they get me stuck –
then I have to come up with different ideas.
That’s ok. To get anywhere, both problems and ideas are good places to start. Both are useful. And although some ideas can get me stuck, there are other ideas waiting to be discovered.

All it takes is being flexible and inventive, cheerful, annoyed or inspired, and sometimes a mix of all of these. Talk it over, brainstorm, ask more and better questions, doodle or map it out. All of this in order to find out what moves your customers and mine.

Persistence is the friend of ideas.

And ideas will come.
Practical ideas that reliably move us along.
Ideas that resolve impasses.
Wild ideas that springboard over obstacles.
Ideas for the times.
Ideas for later.
Ideas for the budget.
Ideas for fun.
Ideas for living up to our ideals.
Ideas for our fellow man.
Ideas to expand.
The idea is to begin now –
take a step
– and see what kind of idea it is!

working through

from the intial sketches it takes a bit of refining and decisions to put the artwork to good use.

to bring it into the next phase means shaping the sketch, deciding on colors, before using the art in a design.

and then, adding contrast, designing the type to match it with a good typeface, and balancing the composition so it is neither cluttered nor slack, until the design is complete and the artwork and type enhance each other.