Trip To Kenya

Steve May

My sketchbooks are usually an unruly mixture of ideas and observational sketches with a judicious scattering of scrawled phone numbers, shopping lists, snatches of random conversation and general profanity at the back (I never trust anybody with an immaculate sketchbook!)

As much as I love my computer with all its clever buttons, I find sketchbooks are a great antidote and accompaniment to digital based work.¬†I tend to use them to sketch out ideas for¬†a commission. It’s amazing how an hour or two spent away from my computer, drawing in a park or a caf√© seems to help with approaching briefs from a different angle … well, that’s my excuse anyway! Often scanned sketches end up as the basis for a finished piece because of the freshness and immediacy of the sketchbook work.

I’ve always kept sketchbooks but over the last few years I seem to have become a ‘born-again-sketchbook-user’. I love sitting and drawing people from life, but I like to work very fast to avoid the embarrassment of being spotted by my victim! These observational drawings are often very different in style and tone to my published work, but they give me the opportunity to draw purely for the sake of drawing and act as a kind of diary where I can get away with being as messy and profane as I like.

You can see more of Steve’s sketches from his recent trip to Kenya on his blog.

‘Samaki’ (Fish)!

Steve on a Donkey