Saturday, January 15, 2011

you are the only thing

I thought I'd take a moment to bang on about the Moleskine sketchbook. Actually why stop there? I might as well take this opportunity to bang on about the Moleskine in general; sketchbook, notebook, diary, etc.
Obviously, there hasn't been too much in the way of drawing getting done, around here, recently as I've been going doodlealley trying to finish off hand decorating these million and one envelopes. And, talking of envelopes (it seems to be the only subject of conversation I have these days) while I was out the other day, desperately trying to source more, I popped into my favourite shop and only local Moleskine seller in the area.
I was going to treat myself to a new Moleskine sketchbook and diary. Perusing the lovely shelves of Moleskines it struck me that it really is the perfect product. It's a product that is so beautifully designed (like a Clark's desert boot, the Eames chair or a Swiss Army knife) that it doesn't need advertising as the customer does all the advertising. Just like I am. Here. Now.
Anyway, I was most disappointed to find that the shop didn't have any Moleskine diaries left. That's what you get for buying a diary on January the 12th. How would I live without my page-a-day diary? Not only do I fill my diaries full of all the extremely important dates for all the extremely important things I'm going to do (don't laugh) but I also fill them with stuff like this;
But, mainly I fill them with stuff like this; lists, references, lists, quotes, lists, lyrics and more lists. This one I made whilst watching the History Boys. I loved the big pin board they had at the back of the classroom (I will have one of those myself one day) that was filled with portraits of icons and idols. I listed some of the people I could spot of the board in the film and added some of my own. For future reference.
I also use my diary to plan drawings and blog posts (NO, don't laugh. I actually plan this stuff). And how would I possibly do without the detachable address book that fits so perfectly into the back pocket of the diary? One less thing for me to doodle on.
Anyway, after perhaps an hour of deliberation (can I do without a page-a-day diary? am I really a weekly planner type of gal?) I settled for the planner. I'm sure I will come to terms with it.
Then I had to choose a new sketchbook. Damn I love new sketchbooks more than I can say (I live alone). That anticipation of the clean pages. That inner cover waiting. Just waiting. What will it look like in a years time? Which direction will it take? I love that space.
Will it be another place to through down ideas like my 'spare' Moleskine, above? A place to work through all those lists and pull a drawing out of the hat? Or will it take on a colour theme like the Sepia one? Still the only Moleskine I've ever completed from inner cover to back pocket.
Or perhaps it'll become the second volume of my travel Moleskine. I'm so close to finishing the first volume. There's definitely a possibility of that. I loved this theme and am not quite done with it yet. Although of course it could be something completely different. I quite like the idea of combining my love of food and drawing and making a kind of foodie-skine. Who knows?
One thing it won't become is a ballpoint Moley. For me, these two mediums didn't quite go together. I don't know why. It's just a personal thing. So the ballpoint Moley that I started, below, doesn't actually exist anymore. I pulled it to pieces.
Anyway, sometimes you need one that is no longer in sketch book form, cos sometimes you need the paper for those little odds and sods that you might want to draw that are not part of any theme.
And, one thing is for sure, to celebrate my love for the Moleskine this year will see more of my little Molezines. I already know the theme for the next one of those. I've been obsessing over that for the last couple of months.
Finally, they threw me out of the shop. I purchased my new books and went. Dreaming of all the possibilities. All the possibilities that a new book and a new year can bring.

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Blogger karen said...

your love of sketchbooks is not a solitary one. I have lots and lots of them. Difference is mine are mostly empty but they are ideal for drooling over imagining how they would look if I could draw.

4:14 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

I am a moleskine sort of person too

4:15 PM  
Blogger mo said...

there is no such thing as having too many moleskines! and so many types to choose from. it just boggles the mind ;)

i write or art journal in mine. i wish i could draw and fill up my moleskines with wondrous and imaginative sketches and things and people like AJ does. le sigh.

at least i can look forward to new molezines, yeay!

4:28 PM  
Blogger Annie B said...

Andrea, I started following your blog a few weeks ago. I have to say, you an amazing artist. Really very inspiring. I love your most recent posts.

4:34 PM  
Blogger Anne Boleyn said...

Do you ever go into an art shop and get entranced staring at the sketchbooks? I really have to restrain myself... lol!

4:43 PM  
Blogger Nikki said...

Ahhh sweet, sweet Moleskines, how I love thee too! I have been known to similarly stand in front of sketch book displays for a long, long time... hehe oops!

7:11 PM  
Anonymous drudra said...

I am new to sketching.. and you've inspired me to find a theme for my sketchbooks... currently it's 'anything goes'... but it'll be really nice to have something like what you did for the 'Sepia one'.

Thanks for that!

9:10 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

oh my, this post was a FEAST for the eyes!!!! YAYYY. i love love love it. I think my fav was your "sketch" with the purple sailboat and swirlies and kitty. What do you mean you can't do a ballpoint moley? don't you usually work in ballpoint pen?

9:17 PM  
Blogger Stephen Hall said...

Scrumptious! :-) xx

9:35 PM  
Blogger said...

The inspiration and happiness you glean from moleskines is evident. I too LOVE the perspective of a fresh, blank book. For me it's all about the feel of the paper. I work mostly in watercolor moleskines, and I carry a drawing moly in my purse always for doodles and notes and lists and the like. SO enjoyed the pages you shared!

9:51 PM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Thanks, guys. I know I am not the only Moleskine obsessive, it's good to hear about your passion for the Moley too.

Dawn, I actually meant blue ballpoint. I like to draw with a blue ballpoint on a brillaint white background. For me, they just go together better. I do use other pens, though. The sepia pen is a fineliner, not a ballpoint. And, although some of the colour stuff I do is colour ballpoint I also use colour pencil.

Thank you folks, fo a lovely warm response to this post.

10:23 PM  
Blogger mice_aliling said...

I am addicted to moleskine as well. I have been taking these art classes online and my teacher required a moleskine. Since then, I have been buying. I have 4 spare sketchbook moleskines :)

10:23 PM  
Blogger Chris Hack said...

finally a blog post that perfectly sums up how gorgeously obsessive moleskines are. and you're one of the real masters! that inspire us all to follow in your moley shaped footsteps!

7:38 AM  
Blogger mrana said...

Confession: I'm utterly envious. Of your talent and imagination! Am far too embarrassed to show the interiors of my moleskines they are bits of scrawly garbage sigh.

BTW I just received "Jack & Alice". yes, in Italian ... the language didn't matter as I bought it for the art and it's gorgeous. Congratulations! :)

4:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your drawings... they are so beautiful and intriguing. May I make a suggestion? I would love to see you draw shells one day.

7:22 PM  
Blogger joseph's art and stuff said...

hi, i'm joseph tomlinson, and i'm addicted to moleskine sketchbooks... it's been awhile, everything is looking great on your site. i always thought you finished each of your moleskines, maybe i should have a few going instead of one at a time. i have four more small (pocket) ones, then i'll graduate to the bigger ones. when i start them, i will take on your method of having several going on at once.

3:14 AM  
Blogger Karen Kyle Ericson said...

Hahaha you had me laughing. Ballpoint and mole's don't mix. It's now in pieces. A lot of talent. I am intimidated by a blank sketchpad and need to break this fear. Actually fill them up like you do! You're an inspiration to us all. :)

8:38 PM  
Blogger E*phi said...

I do understand. I'm always complaining how ridiculously expensive they are but since I've had my first one... I bet they put something into the paper. Something *really* addictive. That and I simply love the color and feel of the paper (or maybe it's the drugs making that nice shade of yellow-y white? *g*).
I even got my first planner from moleskine this year (usually use those ugly insurance company freebies). It was a tough decision though because I wanted a diary (like you, to have more space for doodles and notes and the like) but after approx. 3 hours of pondering they threatened to throw me out and I went for the weekly planner. Because I know myself and I know I wouldn't carry anything bigger/heavier with me every day (after the first 1-2 weeks of enthusiasm). ;D

Btw, I wanted to ask: Will you PLEASE marry me? Or something? (Can you tell, I had a specific envelope in my mailbox today!)

9:43 PM  
Anonymous Cat Square said...

I love them too, and blogs like yours (especially yours) inspire me to use them. This is my first comment here and I just want to say I have followed your blog for a while and love your work!

1:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

from Julie,

I've recommended your site to at Violette's Folk Art blog. She is part of an online group called The Sketchbook Challenge.

Your sketches have given me several ideas for subjects to draw and I'm sharing that information with others.

6:22 PM  
Blogger essjay said...

I was put off by what I saw as Moleskine 'snobbery' for a long time, but then I found one going cheap at my local Staples. I bought it and that's me hooked! ;)
Andrea, I wonder if you realise just how inspirational you really are? I've just had a 'new year' moleskine that already has ballpoint sketches in it - in January!! I usually wait at least a month or so before defiling those gorgeous sketchbook pages...!
I have to admit that I really treated myself this year - I got one of the boxed sets of 12 diaries (heavily discounted at that online e-shop we all know of) and have used it every day so far :)
I cannot tell you how much I'm looking forward to your next molezine, Andrea. I am addicted, to both Moleskines and the amazing work you do in yours :)
Sue Longley xXx

6:46 PM  
Blogger Sharmon Davidson said...

Andrea, I'm very inspired by your sketches and by your dedication to your art. I think an empty sketchbook is exciting, too; living alone or not- it's a book of possibilities. Sketch on!

11:58 PM  
Blogger wagonized said...

What a nifty ode to the Moleskine. That top drawing blows my mind.

1:05 AM  
Anonymous Kristine said...

Ah new sketchbooks! They are so shiny and full of possibilities! Now, I'm not a moleskine girl myself (too teeny for my big man hands). But a new sketchbook or journal is always magical! :)

6:48 PM  
OpenID homemadekallie said...

Wow! You're such an amazing artist! I love...LOVE your sketchbooks! Thanks for sharing!

1:31 PM  
Blogger JessieDeMessie said...

What would you name a book you just keep in your handbag, for when you travel places and for when your at home?
I draw alot like you and I have never shown it as work before, I find drawing in notebooks so, personal, but I want to be more confident with my work and the only way I can do that is by showing things I like.
Do you have any words of advice?

10:53 PM  
Blogger *Dream Weaver* said...

i heart your sketch books :)
they are awesome.

2:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If not a Moly, what do you use as a sketchbook for the blue ballpoint drawings?

4:00 PM  

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