Skip to main content

It's never too late to try something new



A sketchbook is great place to experiment new ideas. The funny thing is as much as I love painting in watercolors, I do not own a watercolor sketchbook. I thought making one would be a great solution, something I have never done. I imagine it is not new to many of you, your homemade art journals are the source of my inspiration. It was easy to make, I used dental floss as a binder! I have already filled it up with several sketches.



Sketch of my dinner  salad -includes corn, tomatoes lettuce, carrots...


 I have also been reading Jean Haines book, Atmospheric Watercolours: Painting with Freedom, Expression and Style. All things I long for! It's a great book and I love how she encourages you to use her methods while using your own creativity.

 Begonias

I feel my last two sketches are close to my goal. I am testing myself with the loose washes of color.

I would love to hear if any of you have tried making your own journals.

Thanks for stopping by!

Comments

  1. Two of my favourite things Celia. Sketchbooks and painting loosely. I know you will get so much enjoyment from your sketchbook. Knowing that you made it, makes painting in it even more pleasureable. Also knowing that it is unique makes it special too. I love my sketchbooks and it is where I am the most comfortable when I create. Jean Haines' book is fabulous too. I know you will love that as well. Your paintings and sketchbook look fabulous. Keep enjoying!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your sketchbooks are works of art in themselves Laura. I really appreciate your encouragement. I do agree that I am having fun painting in it! Thanks you!

      Delete
  2. Haven't ever made a sketchbook Celia but I certainly appreciate the feeling of using unique handmade items, great idea with the dental floss, your salad looks like a colorful abstractly design, look forward to seeing your sketches

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lorraine! The dental floss is holding up very well! :-)

      Delete
  3. Celia, you did a great job on the sketchbook and the sketches. This looks like a coptic binding (which I want to learn how to do). I've made journals using the Japanese stab binding method, but the journal doesn't lay flat. It does look pretty. I also made some from a single sheet of watercolor following Cathy Johnson's youtube video. Those are fun too. The best part about making your own sketchbooks is you can make them using the kind of paper you want, and even several different kinds in one book.

    Jean Haines has a great book. I got to see her do a live demo of several dogs...she was amazing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Joan, yes this is coptic binding, I'm happy you recognize it! It is very comfortable to use and I hope to make more of these. I like the idea of having control over the paper.
      You are very lucky, I love her dog paintings!
      Thanks for the kind comment!

      Delete
  4. hi Celia,
    What a great keepsake and organizer for your watercolors. making journals was a yearly project I did with my art students. but they were the Japanese stab binding which the kids laced with ribbon. Looked good but didn't lay flat.
    This is a perfect solution for your work. Love the salad painting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can imagine how fun of an art teacher you were Carmella! It is a great activity for kids. I'm so happy you like my salad! :-)

      Delete
  5. Hello Celia! I think this is a great idea though I never made one. I keep piling up my small waterpaintings exercices in a drawer. Lovely salad! Happy Sunday Celia! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is what I was doing too Helen, bits of paper everywhere. It is a different experience to paint in a sketchbook. I hope you are having a nice week!

      Delete
  6. Well I'll be..... D'you know, I've been wondering how to make some watercolour sketchbooks as I won't pay the prices manifacturers ask. I was convinced I would come up with a genius idea eventually but you've stolen my fire. What a great idea!! Thanks for sharing it Celia. Nice sketches too!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are outrageously priced, this is a great solution and if I can do it I know you can too. I hope to see one on your blog soon...thanks for the nice comment!

      Delete
  7. It's always good to try something new, I have some sketchbooks myself , and they often come in handy if you just want to try a new subject, and you don't want to 'ruin' a watercolor sheet. I like your dinner sketch very much , very healthy too :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm happy you like it Jane, I need to eat healthy!
      When a sketch doesn't come out well you have a piece of paper ready to go, instead it is upsetting to ruin an expensive sheet of paper.

      Delete
  8. Celia my second favorite thing to do is making art journals, and small books, sketchbooks etc. I've shown them on my blog which I know you come to and also on my other one. I hand bind with wax or linen thread.. There are many books on how to do them, I started some years ago
    Yours looks like you have a good start. If you go to my Art Hearts Journey blog you'll see some . They are so much fun and as for sketchbooks you can use any kind of paper you like... Barbra Joan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Barbra, I have admired your sketchbooks many times! I like choosing my paper and maybe will try and decorate the cover next time. I will be by to look again for more inspiration! :-)

      Delete
  9. I have never made a sketchbook either, Celia. This looks great and easy to do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Judy, I think if I can do it anyone can!

      Delete
  10. Buenos apuntes, muy expresivos. Me gustan.

    Buena semana.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Muchas gracias Sergio, che tengas un buena semana también!

      Delete
  11. Love your sketchbook journal idea Celia! Very resourceful to use your watercolor sheets and create your own journal By the way I did post a landscape the other day but decided to remove it. I may post again later if I can fix the parts that just not working. I did the painting to submit in the Daily Paintworks Challenge this week. Thanks Celia,

    Take care

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Debi! I'm happy you told me because I thought there was a problem with my connection to your blog. I look forward to seeing your finished landscape! Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  12. Celia - your sketchbook journal looks great - what a creative thought about binding it with dental floss - that is an idea I am keeping on my list of things to try. Actually I have never made a watercolor journal - yours certainly inspires me and I love those glorious juicy free flowing sketches. I must read Jean Haine's book - I subscribe to her blog and her enthusiasm for watercolor is certainly catching. Have a fabulous week and thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  13. New is good! Great idea Celia! Looking forward to seeing your notebook full of great paintings and ideas! Good luck and enjoy!
    I have never made a watercolor journal. I have been keeping a daily diary journal since 1971! My first year as a teacher. Take care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Michael for your visits and encouragement! I like the idea of keeping a diary and am impressed by your commitment, we need more teachers like you! A big hug!

      Delete
  14. You made me laugh with the tooth floss. Mint?
    Anyway, good job... - very creative. I really enjoyed seeing the lovely paintings you have done and admire you for trying new techniques. Thats where the joy is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am using mint for my next journal,it will smell wonderful!
      Thank you, Julie, your comments are very special to me.

      Delete
  15. A great job with the sketch book Celia!! All your paintings will be extra special when using your hand-made book. I was surprised by the timing of your post as it was right around the time that my daughter hand made a notebook for her friend's birthday using a very similar technique - I have just posted some photos of it on my blog!
    Love your first paintings in your new book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so happy you like it. I am going to have a look at your post right away! Thanks for the comment Wendy!

      Delete
  16. Love your handmade book. I have dabbled in making small watercolour journals and they take a long time! .....But very rewarding. Also love your loose bright watercolours.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for you kind comment, I appreciate the visit and the follow!

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

All about Roses

 View of Rome from the Pincian Hill watercolor on paper 23 x 30.5
My friend, Michelle Endersby,  asked if I would enjoy doing a sketch of a rose in Rome for her monthly newsletter. Michelle's work has the most beautiful art inspired by roses and nature (click here to view her work). She shares her knowledge about roses, rose gardens, most importantly her current artworks. She has an amazing collection of roses from her personal garden, homeland of Australia and travels. (you can view them on her  Instagram page)

Rome has many beautiful gardens. My thoughts went back to a rose I remembered seeing in the Pincian Gardens. I always hoped to have the opportunity to go back to paint this image. I was lucky enough when I made it back up there to find roses to sketch, it happened to be just as the sun was setting.  The light became golden, sharpening the colors of the already beautiful subject for me.



my sketch done on site
------------------------------------------------------------------…

Hidden Darling

Hidden Darling watercolor on Canson paper
24 x 32 cm

A painting of what is in front of me, from direct observation. 
I am finding it more difficult to keep up with this blog. I feel I need to simplify, this will be my last post. 
I wish to thank everyone who has taken the time to visit me here over the years. It has been a wonderful experience.
If I don't already follow you on other platforms, please leave me a comment and let me know where I can find you to stay in touch.

If you are interested in keeping up with my work, I mostly post on Instagram at the present under @celiawatercolor

I also will be updating my website more regularily
 ( watercolorsbyceliablanco.com )



Peaceful Isolation

Peaceful Isolation
17 × 11cm watercolor on FABRIANO ARTISTICO cold press paper
available
I painted this on location while on the Greek island of Ios. I was mesmerized by the jewel color of the ocean and the beautiful color shifts it created. One of my favorite spots had this dinghy left at anchor, I was immediately attracted by the similarities between the colors of the dinghy and the surrounding water. 


This is the first sketch in my sketchbook.
The sun dried everything on contact, which took some getting use to.  I discovered that it was better if I filled my palette wells with water and worked smaller.



This is the second sketch.
The little red dot you see in the water is my husband snorkeling.  He wears a red swim cap to make it easy for me to find him.



This is as far as I got on location. I didn't bring my finer brushes. I left the fine details for when I got home.


Thank you for your visit!