Expressive Sketchbooks – Developing Creative Skills, Courage, and Confidence – Helen Wells


Description: Expressive Sketchbooks shares a host of creative ideas and prompts, tools and techniques, methods for working around obstacles and barriers, and tons of visual inspiration to help you grow in your sketchbooking practice.

An expressive sketchbook is a place for you to explore, express, and enjoy your own innate creativity on your own terms. It is a safe playground for the imagination—a place to mess about, play, and experiment—and to gain confidence in your abilities as you develop your skills.

Expressive Sketchbooks offers techniques and creative exercises that incorporate mark making, watercolor, mixed media, collage, words and text, and more. It unpacks some of the obstacles and barriers that you may face along the way and offers wisdom and encouragement to help you decide why and how to start your sketchbook and how to develop and expand your artistic practice.

This book is packed with ideas and exercises, including:

• Exploratory drawing exercises
• How to utilize colour in your sketchbook
• How to create dynamic and varied sketchbook pages
• How to find inspiration in nature and in your everyday life
• Ways to mix media and art supplies
• Ways to kickstart your creativity
• How to find and develop a process that feels personal to you

Through this book, you’ll find out what lights you up, what makes you curious and fascinated, and what makes you expansive. Discover how to magnify your creativity and enliven your art skills by using an expressive sketchbook as your daily companion.

Why I Like It
As a lover of notebooks I could totally relate to this beautiful book, Expressive Sketchbooks is a wonderful celebration of the joy of creativity.

Beautifully illustrated, this is very much a book for our time. Bursting with ideas and full of the most gorgeous of colours, this book is a wonderful stimulus for anyone who wants to find a way of expressing their inner creativity.

The content includes:

Magic and motivation
Getting Going
Techniques for Exploring & Experimenting
Growing Your Ideas
Practice and Progress

The book is full of words of wisdom, as Helen shares her thoughts and inspiration:

A sketchbook is an art adventure.Try different approaches and discover and uncover your artistic voice as you go’

Sketchbooks, like journals and notebooks are private places where you can have a creative conversation with yourself, where ideas can be formulated, thoughts can be shared in a safe and intimate environment. Importantly they also record your development, looking back through them you can see how ideas have started, developed and grown.

In developing a sketchbook, you take an idea from your head and heart and bring them to life on your pages.’

As well as exercises and ideas to help you develop; I particularly like the Ideas/Inspiration maps, Helen also gives advice on colours, techniques, tools and the best type of sketchbook, whether it is a small portable one, or larger ones to use at home, or in a studio.

This is an absolutely gorgeous book, uplifting, inspiring and full of the most stunning colour illustrations! Highly Recommended!

Expressive Sketchbooks: Developing Creative Skills, Courage, and Confidence by Helen Wells, published by Quarry Books