My Sketching Stuff

When thinking about our first prompt this month of “something you love,” I would like to say that my mind leapt to some cherished family heirloom, but that simply wasn’t the case. Nope, my little brain, as it’s often prone to do, jumped immediately to art supplies. Though I certainly adore my watercolors and palette, all of my little sketches start with what’s shown here. And as much as I’m not shy to admit that I have a penchant for art supplies, I’m equally bold enough to admit something else. I’m just a big kid and my sketches mostly just start as coloring book outlines. I remember when I was actually a kid and how I always wished I could color my own drawings. At the time, I couldn’t really make drawings that looked like the ones in those books, so my attempts were frustrating and not very successful. I dreamed that one day I would be able to do it, and now, over 40 years later, I’m finally getting my chance. As some of you know, I refer to my little sketchbook as my “watercolory book.” Though I do consider myself an illustrator of sorts, this is why I don’t think of myself as a painter. I’m still just a kid coloring inside and sometimes mischievously outside of the lines.

My drawing kit fits entirely in a little leather Lamy case I purchased. It wasn’t available anywhere in the United States at the time and I had to purchase it from a company in the UK. I adore it and was so pleased to see it’s now available on Amazon (also from a company in England). Not that I need a second one, of course. This is just something silly I repeat in my head we all know I’ll totally end up buying a second one at some point! I use a silver Lamy AL-Star with an Extra Fine nib primarily as it’s filled with black ink. And it is a family heirloom of sorts since it’s my first Lamy fountain pen and one that Philippe bought for me one Christmas. He also bought me the blue one in the foreground as a “just because gift,” but I’ve decided to get a larger nib for it before I really break it in.

The copper Lamy Al-Star in the back was a limited edition that’s no longer available and is filled with sepia ink. It’s also a great way to remember what color is inside. This year’s limited edition Lamy Al-Star is bronze, and though it appears to be a rather similar color, it’s still on my birthday wish list. Many times, I still make a quick contour sketch with my Alvin Draft-Matic Mechanical Pencil, and for some reason the oddly old-fashioned name of “draft-matic” makes me love it even more. This pencil is just thin enough to slide into the case with the three pens, and I then reshape my kneaded eraser and lay it on top and close everything up!

This tiny compact case needs only a sketchbook to pair with it and I have all I need to make my little coloring book pages on the go! I made the initial sketch at work and thankfully, I had a second mechanical pencil in my bag as it’s really hard to sketch a pencil when you’re actually using it. Once I have my image ready to color, I’ll sit like a little kid on the edge of the kitchen counter after work and start coloring while Philippe makes dinner and we chat about our day. A paper towel, water in a tiny yogurt jar, and my messy watercolor palette complete my entire sketching and painting studio. And my inner child is thrilled each and every day when he gets the chance to color his very own art. If there’s anyone out there who has been thinking about sketching, but hasn’t tried it yet, there’s no better time to start than now! You don’t even need this many supplies to start drawing. Just a pencil, some paper and positive thinking is all it really takes. Though the supplies are fun, and I adore them, I guess the thing I love most is what those supplies make possible. A moment each day to draw and play with color as I continue on my happy little journey of sketching stuff.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Benzimida Orange, Cobalt Turquoise, Cobalt Blue, Terra Cotta, and Indigo. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
My Sketching Stuff Art Supplies Watercolor - Doodlewash


Recommended4 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
  1. Mary Roff 3 years ago

    Excellent,Charlie!! And what a wonderful set up!! This was a tough prompt….there are just so many things to love that it was difficult to decide what to doodle. The list of “things you love” goes on and on and on.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Thanks so much, Mary! 😃💕hehe… yeah, these open ended prompts are tougher than the usual fare, but I love doing them once a year. It’s fun to see what pops to mind and then go with it! 😉

  2. creatingincolors 3 years ago

    You are living proof that one does not need a room full of “stuff” to create beautiful art! And you might inspire me to try sketching one of these days!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Aww thanks so much! 😃💕 And yay!! My entire goal in all of this is to inspire more people to sketch! It’s so much fun! One of these days… I’m going to lure you into DOing it! hehe

  3. June Hadaway 3 years ago

    I love your sketching stuff!! It all works very well for you too!!! 😊 There are so many things to love.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Thanks so much, June! 😃💕 Yeah, it’s a tiny art studio, but that’s why I love it so much! Always loved miniatures. hehe

  4. Sharon Nolfi 3 years ago

    Great kit, great sketch!

  5. Sandra Strait 3 years ago

    Oh! You shouldn’t show me things like this! Do you know how dangerous it is to my pocketbook? And that’s even though I have so many travel setups that I take days to decided which one to use on the occasions I actually travel, lol. I’m the person who just bought a tiny tin of salt flakes so I could carry it in one of my to-go kits. Though it may end up being a 3-color paint palette eventually. (Maldon Salt Pinch Tin – 0.35 Oz)

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Yeah, I’m already thinking we need to re-check our genealogy because I’m quite sure we’re related! lol 😃💕 Love that you bought travel salt flakes. I think everything should be pocket-sized! hehe… it’s just so much better!

  6. Lisa 3 years ago

    I spent some hours over the last two days sorting my paints and boxing them in color categories and making alphabetical lists for each box. Now I won’t buy doubles any more. Plus I like playing with all those possibilities.

    I get you here. When I was writing having the right writing tool was paramount. The fact that I wrote about 98% of my stuff on the computer made no never mind. Still had to have the best pen for the job! Lol I liked to have just the right notebook too. Kind of crazy!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Crazy in that way we all are! hehe Love it, Lisa! 😃💕 And wow… I’m stunned and impressed with your paint organization. I now just want to invite you my home to do the same! lol That’s awesome!

  7. memadtwo 3 years ago

    I love mechanical pencils too. (K)

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Yeah, I think they’re awesome! I sometimes just sketch with pen, but I still love scribbling with pencil.

  8. Snehlata Maheshwari. 3 years ago

    I liked u r pen but i didn’t get it in amazon.
    Here in India.lets hope so.
    Ur kit is pretty one.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Thanks, Snehlata! 🙂 Yeah, I love these pens! And it took me forever to get just the right little sketching set. hehe

  9. Jodi 3 years ago

    Oh the possibilities indeed!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Yes!! 😃💕That always makes me think of Dr. Seuss and Oh The Places You’ll Go! hehe

  10. marmeladegypsy 3 years ago

    Of course you will buy another one. That’s what we DO. Thanks for sharing something you love — and when it’s art supplies, I am all in!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      haha! So true! 😃💕 It’s on my birthday wish list… I realized when I added another pen to my wish list, I would of course require the additional case to place it in as well! lol Glad you enjoyed this!

  11. LoriCtoo 3 years ago

    Yes, I have always been an art supply purchaser all my life. (Remember my broken crayon story?) When I was young, it would make my heart race in excitement because it was not a common occurrence. I have to admit, I still get that toe tingling feeling when I find something new purchase now. I did a similar sketch for this prompt. 🙂

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      I DO remember your broken crayon story!! awwww! 😃💕 Yeah, art supplies still make me tingle! hehe… it’s just such a cool moment of a surge of possibilities as to what they might create next!

  12. smzang 3 years ago

    Charlie says, ” it’s really hard to sketch a pencil when you’re actually using it”

    There is something very philosophical about that…like it pertains to objective
    and subjective and about seeing what you’re looking at. Aside from all that
    it is true exactly as you stated it too. It would not surprise me if that quote
    will one day appear in Bartlett’s.

    It is nice to meet the tools that help you produce the glass, the flowers, the
    soul-touching eyes, the petals, all the snippets of life that you share. They
    serve you well, my friend.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 years ago

      Thanks, Sarah! 😃💕 hehe… it’s funny seeing the quote you pulled out of context… it does seem to mean a bit more that way. And yes, these are my little sketching tools. I live a very less is more sort of lifestyle, more or less.

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