Hi! Yes, I’m still alive. I don’t know why I need to keep reassuring everyone of that. Why is everyone expecting me to be dead? Maybe you just like the sense of elation you feel when you realize I’m still breathing and working towards my Artistic Destiny (TM)? Whatever it is, I’m still here.
Now that the kids are back in school and all on the same bus schedule (gone are the days of 3+ bus stops a day for me. I drop them off at the bus stop at 6:30am, they walk home after getting off the bus in the afternoon, or I pick them up in the center of town from the late bus at 4:30pm when they stay after for something), I’ve got the potential for much longer studio time each day. This is only day 2, but me likey. I plan to spend more time on IPMDT and Inside Toby’s Brain (a fun little comic book experiment I’ve been intermittently working on in the Medibang Paint app), as well as work on finding a home for 10 Things, get some administrative stuff done so I can launch the tshirt Etsy shop (and I’ve had tons of ideas for that endeavor and merchandising in general), and maybe even start working on Revery again.
I’m also trying to catch up on posting things to the gallery and making some blog posts. Like this one. This thing you’re reading right now. It’s a blog post from me. Remember what those are?
Sorry, I might be slightly giddy/loopy from all this extra time on my hands.
Anywho, what was I posting about? Oh, yeah. I’ve filled up a bunch of pages in my trusty moleskin sketchbook. I’m going to have to break this down into two different posts, this one dealing with the sketches from two back to back weeks at camp, and another one about some drawings I did recently in The White Mountains (there aren’t as many of those yet, but there’s a pretty neat little back story to go along with them, a bit of Toby History, if you will). Let’s get started.
As I think I’ve stated before (if not here, then elsewhere), I’ve been taking my sketchbook with me each summer when I volunteer as a leader at scout camps. I started the tradition a few years ago at Camp Carpenter and found it was a great way to pass the time while waiting for the scouts to finish up their program areas. It’s also a great way to practice some drawing-from-life, which is something I don’t do enough of during the rest of the year. It also keeps me sane during the week. This series of sketches is very special to me now, as this was my youngest son’s last year as a Cub Scout, and consequently my last year at this particular camp. We’ve had a lot of wonderful times there, and I know at least I have created some fantastic memories along the way. It was (and still is) hard to think that I won’t be in those woods again next year, but aside from pictures and memories, I’ll have these sketches. One of the amazing things about drawing that I’ve noticed is that the images I create are like an anchor point in time for me. I can look at the drawings and remember where I was and what was going on, who was there, sometimes even conversations that happened (almost word for word). These drawings will always be special to me in a bittersweet kind of way: I’m glad I was able to be there for 5 or so years with my kids, I’m glad they will all be in the same place at the same time soon, but I am painfully aware of the all too fast passage of time now.
My last day at Camp Carpenter was a bit of an emotional one (especially the closing campfire the night before. I’m a big sap), but I barely had time to process it because I only had a day and a half at home before heading to the Hidden Valley Boy Scout Camp with my two older boys. You’d think one would have more free time to sit and draw at a Boy Scout camp, since Boy Scouts is boy lead and all about them developing their independence. Not so much, though. At least not if their are a host of scheduling problems that need to be sorted out and adult training sessions you wish to attend. I did far less sketching that week, but I still made sure I did some.
There you have it, two weeks worth of camp sketches in the books for 2017. Lots more projects in the works, hopefully some more regular blog posts and gallery updates coming soon. Thanks for being patient and sticking around!