Monday, May 6, 2013

Putting My Bag on a Diet

Out (left to right): Kuretake fountain brush pen, Cretacolor pencil,
5 water-soluble pencils, 8 Zig markers, 3 fountain pens
To prep for our 15-day trip to Europe in July, when I want to keep my baggage as light as possible (we always travel with carry-on only), I decided to put my daily bag on a diet. We all know how body weight sneaks up on us, a little at a time. It’s the same with my sketch bag: A new pen added one day, a pencil the next, and eventually my bag that was once comfortable to carry everywhere was starting to drag on my shoulder.
My sketching friends like to tease me about the number of pens I carry. I admit, it was getting a bit ridiculous. I realized that I tend to use certain art materials seasonally – in the cold months when I spend more of my sketching time in coffee shops and life drawing studios, I tend to use pencil, pen and ink more; in warm months when I sketch outdoors, I use watercolor more. So last night I took a long, hard look into my bag and pulled out most of the Zig markers, most of the water-soluble pencils and a few fountain pens (see above). I weighed them, and my bag is now 200 grams lighter (close to a half-pound). The items that made the final cut are what I consider the bare essentials (below). (I took out the pen with Private Reserve Velvet Black – ouch – but at least Iroshizuku Take-Sumi stays in.)
The final cut (left to right): 3 Zig markers, 1 water-soluble pencil,
Lamy Nexx, Sailor fountain pen, opaque Uniball pen, 2 Lamy Safaris,
4 waterbrushes, watercolor kit
Of course, when I pack for my Barcelona Urban Sketchers workshops, I’ll have to rethink everything. But over the next few weeks, I’ll give my smaller selection a try to see if there’s anything else I can’t bear to live without.
For more on my bag and its continually changing contents, see Current Favorite Art Materials.


1 comment:

  1. Your ever-changing art kits are fascinating to observe! I haven't seen any of your reviews of the Sailor Pen, but maybe I've missed it! It might be a good idea to add a "Search Box" to your site - you have so much wonderful info to share!

    Cheers and Happy Sketching from 1 Urban Sketcher to Another!
    Kathy Crabbe h


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