Playground For The Mind
“When I was little my Dad would often bring home huge stacks of used computer paper that was spat out of the massive computers at the telephone exchange where he worked. My brother and I would routinely attack these with our felt-tips, doodling funny characters, making our own comics, and amassing a gigantic paper mountain of our creations that would have caused any Health and Safety Officer to scream ‘Fire Hazard’ at the top of his voice. Thus started my love affair with doodling.
When I was thirteen, doing my Art GCSE, they encouraged us all to keep sketchbooks, insisting that everyone bought a brand new, hard-backed Seawhite book. Upon opening my new purchase I was greeted by page after page of fresh, shiny, blindingly white leaves that were so immaculate I had to slam the book shut through fear of sullying them with my adolescent eyes!
I was only used to scribbling on waste paper. The thought of my pencils approaching such a beautifully made object was like considering graffiti-ing Buckingham Palace. But…I soon got over it, and now there’s nothing more fun than filling those wonderful hardback volumes with my unadulterated crap.
Nowadays I use my sketchbook for not only doodling into, but also collecting together all my loose scribbles like a scrapbook. I do still have a preference for drawing on low quality paper. There’s just a great throw-away quality to it that allows you to leap pen first with desperate abandon; Post-it-notes and Pilot pens being my current scribble-vice. So my more recent sketchbooks are full of Post-it-drawings; the result of lots of very long meetings at work. I also use the back pages as a reference scrapbook, filling it with magazine cuttings, print outs, clippings from packaging, anything that I find inspiring or appealing.
Sketchbooks are great fun. It’s a playground for your mind and your pen to dance around together, chase each other, fight to the death and make-up afterwards! It’s a place to try things out while no one’s looking and plan your next hair-brained scheme. They’re also a fantastic source of amusement as you flick through your old sketchbooks and wonder at what ever possessed you to draw such ridiculously silly things!”
For more shenanigans and visual phooey, check out Chris’s blog.