Watercolor Sketchbook and Kit

I used to always carry a sketchbook around and draw with me, but then I fell off my horse, so to speak, and have been struggling to get back into the saddle. So I told myself that I would try. And I discovered that I am not a fan of my pencil sketching, so I decided to switch things up and add some of my preferred media (and my favorite tool, Mr. Paintbrush).

Hand Book Co's Travel Logue Watercolor Book

Hand Book Co's Travel Logue Watercolor Book

I have to say that these days I much rather have a brush in my hand rather than a pencil, and I rather paint something than just draw it. Of course that doesn't exclude me actually drawing at all, I just am no longer a fan of my plain ol' drawings. 

That being said I have invested in watercolor book, and over the past few months I have developed a bit of favoritism towards Hand Book's Travel Logue over Moleskin. For one thing, there are more pages, and they are cheaper. I think that I have been able to buy the books for around $12 (I believe this is for the 5.5 x 8 in book) at Hobby Lobby. Did I mention these things have like 60 pages in them?

MY Urban Sketch Kit

MY Urban Sketch Kit

I have also decided to throw together a travel kit, which was greatly inspired by watching James Gurney's videos on his exploits in sketching in the wild. I did this in preparation for a trip to Costa Rica, though I wasn't able to get much painting done there (because you know, vacation things and such).

Breakdown of the kit is as follows:
*A viewfinder which I got from here
* My trusty Hand Book
* A DIY watercolor tin made from an Altoids tin and two of the plastic Dentyne Ice gum packs. These are filled with watercolors and gouache from tube paints of mine.
*A mini travel pallet that I believe is from Aquarelle, and a piece of natural sponge 
*Various aqua brushes
*A pencil tin that I modified to hold small travel brushes, and which also includes mechanical pencils, a small ruler, a black fine tipped sharpie, a while gel pen, and two sepia colored microns
* A  Hot Topic mint tin (you know those things that cost $1 that gets donated to support the arts?), which now holds my kneaded eraser. 

I haven't used the aqua brushes much, and I find that like with all things they just take some getting used to. I did do a few small sketches with them while on the beach during my vacation. It's also different to paint in the Altoid tin (because if you don't keep it dry it will rust), vs a normal pallet. 

Mostly I stick to normal brushes, and I admit that while I have used some of my urban kit to do some of the following studies, the majority of them where with my normal pallet and brushes.  I kinda liked the idea of having flora based images to focus on as studies in this particular sketchbook, and these are only a handful of the ones that I have done in the book so far. Part of it is learning to do things that I am not comfortable painting, and part of it is just being happy to sit down and paint something that isn't for anything in particular. 

On that note, I leave you with some of my studies. I hope you enjoy them.