Graphic Designer & Hand Letterer


"What's In" | My Sketchbook

Now you should understand that I did "groom" this selection. You don't need to see 500+ pages of scribbles. Instead I want to show your the good and kinda ugly from my sketchbooks.
***There are pages that should never see the light of day. Like crazy, just woke up, bed head, Medusa scary. You dont need to see those. ( but if you do need to see them Ex. 1, 2, 3 )

MY PROCESS: Part of my natural creative process tends to be untidy, messy, and unkempt. It is like that for may creatives. Its almost impossible to make print ready designs on the first try like I have tried to make you believe on the blog & Instagram  ( exhibit A, B, C ). It takes hours and pages of my sketchbook to refine my ideas into polished, final designs and drawings. Most of these pages are just scribbles. Like chicken scratch, mixed with a three year old's drawing of his family, and a doctors signature, scribbles. Somehow after much TLC they magically go from scribbles to the final products that I share with you on Facebook, Twitter etc.

In my professional experience every designer is drowning in sketchbooks. Many creatives, including myself, use one sketchbook for the unrefined chicken scratch sketching ( say that three times fast ) and a completely different sketchbook for our polished designs. This keeps my “mind vomit” sketches from mixing with the more refined ideas that I come up with later. It also separate the different stages of my process physically and mentally which can be very helpful when working on different projects for several clients at the same time.

MY SKETCHBOOKS: I have 3 different books featured in this post. I always keep two sketchbooks on me e.g. in my briefcase: a large one + a small one. My current favorite is the Canson Mix Media sketchbook. I personally prefer to work in larger sketchbooks ( 9x12in ) with heavy duty pages that can handle many types of media. The Canson Mixed Media sketchbook is perfect for several reasons:

a >>>  I can fit more sketches on one page which allows me to compare the designs quicker when I revisit them.

b >>>  I use felt pens for almost everything. These pens have a tendency to bleed though thin paper making one side unusable, unless it is specialty marker paper. The Canson Mixed Media has very thick paper for a sketchbook ( 98lb ) which cuts down on the ink bleeding through which means I can use both sides of the page.

c >>>  It's ideal for me to have a sketchbook that can take heavy media like watercolor paint, acrylic paint, and heavy flowing pens/markers. Using this sketchbook means I dont have to drag around even larger artist pads ( 18-24in+ ) with specialty paper; I can just use the Canson Mixed Media.


*** I am not endorsed by Canson ( if only right? ), I just think this product is kick ass.

I typically carry around a small sketchbook with me as well and have my eye on the snarky field note sketchbooks over at Eight Eleven Press. Letterpressed and hilarious. For some laughs check her out on Instagram. Almost died.

As always let me know if you have an idea for a “What’s in” post that you would like me to cover and I would love to hear what treasures & monsters you keep in your sketchbook!