I wrote a blog post 10 months into my sketchbook project here. I am always asked so many questions about how I do this.. from discipline to supplies I think its fair time for an update. The earlier post isn't all that different but I have changed up a few things.
The main sketchbook I now use is a Strathmore 500 series Mixed Media sketchbook. The paper is heavy and smooth but with a fine tooth. I love the texture and it handles the paint very well. I can use thick gouache or watercolor or ink and I'm happy with the results of all. I also sometimes use a black sketchbook so I can paint directly onto black paper. It is a Derwent, I am pretty sure this is the right one that I'm linking to here.. Gouache glows on this paper as well as using gold and white gel pens.
I still love my Muji book and I play around in it sometimes but not for this project anymore. The purpose of that was to be free and able to play without worrying about perfection. After a year of that one I'm able to do the same thing on better paper.
I mainly use gouache. I have lots of brands, my favorite is Winsor Newton but I'm a art supply junkie and its hard for me not to buy any color that looks beautiful. I have Holbein, Schminke, Linel, DaVinci..
I recently found this set of Shinhan poster paint that I've had for decades!! It was all dried out so I added water and reconstituted them.. They are so vibrant and gorgeous so I use these now too.
I also use a Sakura of America Watercolor travel set. I take this with me whenever I'm away. It is quite thick lustrous paint and Its perfect for travel and I also use it as an everyday paint if I'm too lazy to squeeze some paint onto the palette! I also add detail with ink, either Dr PH Martins Black Star waterproof ink or just lately some Black Walnut ink that a friend made and gave to me... That one isn't waterproof. I also use Bleed Proof White for details and layering over gouache.
I really love this little well palette, but I'm happy mixing paint on anything that is white.
For paintbrushes I started using Escoda Barroco sintetico after I picked some up on a trip to Spain last spring. They last so much longer than other brushes for me. I am rough on them!!! I use size 1 up through about 16. For big areas of color it goes fast to use a really big brush and the size 1 is great for layering details.
Discipline wise it has just become something I do. Some days are still hard and I don't love every piece. But I get more confident every day. I don't apologize for one that is ugly anymore.. Maybe I have a migraine, or I got a call that upset me or I just feel crappy. Its about doing it for me and not about the outcome. I usually find something in all of them that makes me happy, but if I don't I just move on to the next day. There is always the next day. 30 minutes is manageable, I can fit it in without feeling too stressed out. This is the only habit in my life that I have been able to keep up like this. I think because its the most rewarding in so many ways.
I still love this project, even on my 3rd year. I haven't missed a day! I love all the amazing support from everyone.. I wish I could respond to you all individually but it just takes so much time. I read and look at everything that comes through. I'm so grateful for all the press and the jobs and the encouragement that has come from this. Sometimes I just stop in my tracks and am amazed by the whole thing. I wish I could keep up this blog more consistently but I just get too busy and I need time to unwind at the end of the day. I hope this helps answer some questions and I'll update when I can. xo Jennifer