Ugly Sketchbook

Earlier this week, I posted a somewhat refined “urban sketch” of a Vespa scooter. As I had been taking increasing note of all of the scooters on the sidewalks of Washington, DC, I decided to grab my “Ugly Sketchbook”, and spend some time during a lunchtime stroll letting my pen run loose and free as I studied what the details of a scooter really are, and what it would take to sketch one.

US_1_web US_2_web

Lunch Lines

Happy 2015 everybody; hope we all have a great creative year ahead of us (yes; if there can be a business year, a fiscal year, and a budget year, there can also be a creative year!)

To kick it off, here’s a scooter I sketched during a lunchtime stroll. Not only can you spot some interesting bicycles parked on the sidewalks of Washington, DC, but some interesting scooters as well. This lovely blue Vespa is a regular is always chained up to a parking meter just around the block from my office, and one day I finally decided to sketch it.

LL_web

Ugly Sketchbook

Here’s an interesting doodle from my small, cheap “ugly sketchbook”, which I use for general, no-holds-barred sketching. I had just finished up seven hours of intense digital production work; seven hours of face-to-the-screen, fingers going manic over the keyboard and mouse, and concentration pegged to the red zone. I walked out of the office with a blown-out expression on my face, feeling somewhere between a zombie and a monster, which is what inspired this doodle.

I’m going to make this the last post for 2014. Thanks to everybody whom has visited, followed, liked, and commented on Sketchbook Warrior over the past year. I’ve enjoyed the interactions, and look forward to more in 2015. Hanaka Sameach to my fellow Yisra’elim, Merry Christmas to those celebrating, and happy new year to all of you.

– Jason

US_19_web

Jack Rose Saloon Sketch for Maga Design

In 2013, Maga Design Group contracted me to sketch the bar at the Jack Rose Saloon for their annual holiday party’s invitations and collateral. To sketch this illustrious Washington, DC pub, which houses perhaps the largest whisky collection in the world, I sought advice from the master of sketching bars and pubs, Pete Scully. Following Pete’s advice, I spent two nights sitting at the bar sketching everything in sight (and enjoying some excellent craft beers!). For the full story and process shots of the sketch, check out this gallery on my Behance.

jackrose_600_web jackrose_600_detail_1_web jackrose_600_detail_2_web jackrose_600_detail_3_web

Metro Sketch

If you’ve ever ridden the Washington, DC, Metro, then you’re accustom to the unique interior colors of the train; a palette of burgundy, orange, yellow, and blue straight out of the 1970s. Though decades old nowadays, they still sometimes visually complement the colors of the clothing worn by some of the commuters. I sketched this individual on the Metro, noted down the colors, and then completed the sketch with my markers at a cafe immediately after debarking from the train.

Sketch_4_web

Farm Sketch

After extensively sketching the urban architecture of Washington, DC, I figured I would take a shot at rural architecture while visiting a farm in suburban Maryland. I thought that this would be pretty easy, but I was rather mistaken; while I had developed a visual and aesthetic fluency in the architecture of historic urban neighborhood buildings, rural farming structures were something totally different, and were more challenging than I thought (I also had limited time to do these sketches.) Hopefully, I’ll get back to attempt these again some day.

Farm1_web Farm2_web

Metro Sketch

Full frontal/facial sketches are some of the most challenging sketches to attempt on the Metro; while I try to be discrete and respectful of the people I sketch, sketching people sitting directly across from me presents the greatest risk of being noticed. Generally, though, these people are either asleep or too fully focused on their devices to notice me. Of course, there’s always that other challenge; on-boarding passengers unknowingly blocking your view and pretty much ending the sketching session.

Sketch_3_web

Lunch Lines

There’s a Trader Joe’s supermarket near our office, and I often see this Gitane fixie locked to the bike rack outside. Far from Gitane’s heyday as one of the premier French brands, which included providing the bikes to French cycling legends Bernard Hinault and Laurent Fignon (the 1988 Systeme U team bikes are one of my all time favorites!), this old, battered, and very characteristic Gitane still always caught my eye. One day, out to pick up my supply of frozen lunches, ground coffee, and craft beer, I spotted the Gitane, and finally decided to sketch it.

LL_2_web