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Sketchbook progress

Hello everyone,

I always have a few sketchbooks on the go. I don’t work into them every day, but I try to do a bit as often as I can. Working in the books isn’t always about fully resolving an idea on the page, it can just allow time for thoughts to form in my head. I hoped you might like to see how some pages are looking at the moment.

The books are always a place where I can bring together diverse sources of inspiration. Often I expect it looks quite disparate and scattered. The link is me, these are all the things that appeal to me, that I enjoy and that seem relevant and interesting to what I’m thinking about and researching.

At the moment there are skeletons, eyes, octopus, teardrops, stripes, broken pottery fragments, favourite paintings, and more. It’s all work in progress. I’ll come back to these pages and add more.



On the left hand side of this spread, I’d dipped the page in the marbling vat that we had on the go recently. The colours weren’t quite right, red and black which I like, but also some purple that didn’t really have a place in the book. I added a layer of acrylic over the top and I’m not entirely sure it’s solved the problem, it might even be worse! I will probably go back to it and glaze over, maybe with a warm yellow.

Doing something like marbling a page of your book with random colours is a good challenge to yourself. It’s almost like a mistake that you then have to fix, or a very separate element that you have to integrate. This page got me thinking about how those cell shapes in the marbling could be worked into the composition. I placed a circular sticker of colour in some of them, then a collaged eye motif.


A closer look at that marbling + sticker + collage combo. The collaged eyes are from some packaging tissue that I had. I like how simple they are, the eye motif really reduced down to its essential shapes.


And this is a closer look at the right hand side. You can see that I’ve continued the stickers and eyes across the page in a band, trying to find a bit more formality than there was in the marbling.

This whole eye fascination is partly arising from the idea that when you’re a parent you have to look after someone else and have eyes in the back of your head. It amused me that it’s the back of the skeleton so I thought that worked quite nicely.

The skeleton is a big sticker from this John Derian book…

This really is a sticker book! every other page is a sticker page, the others are just images, but you could cut those up and collage them once you’ve peeled the stickers off the back.

There are some very lovely illustrations like these shells.

And I do like this portrait and of course the birds. I’ve not used stickers in my work like this before, but I am enjoying having this resource book of motifs that I can dip into. It’s such a quick way to get an image on the page. Although they are self adhesive, I’m going over the top with acrylic gel medium to make sure they are really well stuck down and also so that I can paint and draw over the top of them too.

Here’s a link to the sticker book

So that’s a quick look at a page from the larger of the books that I’m working in at the moment. I’ll pop back tomorrow with a look at some pages from the smaller one.

Thanks for visiting the blog today.

Laura x


Other posts

More Sketchbook

A look at some recent pages in my small sketchbook.

Studio Session – January 2024

Have a look at some of the work being made by the students on my regular Studio Session in-person classes.

Marbled Papers

Take a look at the loose papers I marbled recently.

I often get asked for info on where to buy the products and supplies that I use in my work. On the blog I’ll include links where appropriate to my favourite things and to products that I’ve had success with. I will only link to items that I’ve tried and would recommend. Please note some of these are affiliate links so I may earn a small percentage without it costing you any extra 🙂

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