As this year began to wane, or anyway after my last trip just last month, I just decided putting my suitcase away was a waste of effort. As I began laundering and readying to pack to go to our oldest son's family's house for the holidays, I wondered how many times in 2012 I had performed this task. So I got out my calendar and checked; this is my eleventh time to pack for a trip in the past 12 months.
In spite of that, I am not a 'traveler.' Most of my trips were family related. One trip was to teach at Convergence. And the highlight trip was with my son to Paris in May. (OK, I did feel like a 'traveler' on that trip!)
I am becoming a very efficient packer. I have learned that I generally wear the same few things on a trip, just like I do at home. So it is smartest to pack light and plan to do laundry.
The sketch above is from my 2012 sketchbook. I got a larger sized Moleskin for this year. It is the 5"x8" size. I wasn't sure about it, to begin with. I thought maybe that much blank paper would overwhelm me, but I actually found the opposite to be true. The smaller size makes me sketch so small, that I think I tighten up. Sketching and painting bigger helps me stay loose. I love the paper in the Moleskin sketchbooks! NOT the watercolor books, just the sketchbooks. It is a cream color, and it resists the paint just enough to give it a real sketchy, painterly look. This Moleskin has a lot of pages in it, and I have been doing two-page spreads. I had hoped to fill this book by the end of this year. I have filled well over half of it, but I have only a couple of weeks left to go. I haven't decided how to deal with that yet. I might do like I do with my journals, and just keep going until it's filled, then start a new one, whenever that may be. Or I have thought of doing a spread for each month on New Year's Day, which, along with what I do between now and then, might fill this book.
As I look back through the sketchbook, it gives me an accurate picture of what my year was like, with the exception of the Paris trip. I used another sketchbook for that trip. I actually wanted to sketch more of that trip, so I could also sketch from some of my photos to fill this sketchbook. That is a completely legitimate way to sketch, as I noted that Van Gogh often sketched and painted from prints and pictures when I went to the exhibit of his work last week.
Well, whatever I decide, it is always exciting for me to see a new year coming ahead. And I also love to finish a sketchbook, and begin a new one. Perhaps those things will coincide this year, if I plan it just right!