Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Postcards from an Equinox Campout

The vernal equinox is always a nice time to have a little adventure. We biked out to a local state park, rented a cabin to keep the rain off our heads, and had a mini-campout for the equinox. Much of the fun was making food on the tiny portable stove...even simple meals become amazingly tasty when cooked outdoors.

I've been playing with simple postcards lately, very loosely based on the Japanese folk art of etegami, where quick drawings of everyday things are accompanied by a simple written phrase. My captions are perhaps not as witty or philosophical as they could be in this set, but I still think they capture some of the fun of camping out and cooking in the pouring rain. (Click on images below to enlarge.)

I stumbled upon the drawing tools for this little sketching niche quite by accident, actually. Was at a coffee shop digging through a bag of pens and paints and brushes that I had packed will-nilly for some other project, and thought I'd try the big old brush pen that had somehow ended up in the mix. (It must have been something I picked up from my grandma's collection, because I didn't recognize it, nor even knew if the ink would be black, or blue, or gray...) Much to my delight, poking at it with a water-brush revealed that the black ink was water-soluble, dissolving into some very pretty shades of gray when you paint over a line with just plain-old water. Of course, that means that stray raindrops also create creative shading...but that's part of the joy of a spontaneous sketch, isn't it? 

Hooray for more paper mail, and more excuses to doodle everyday stuff. (Note to self: make sure that the camping gear earns that label of "everyday stuff," it was good to be spending time outdoors!)

Read more about etegami:


  1. Thanks for my postcard! - I think the style is beautiful! BTW, did you know that "Only connect" is one of my most important ideas?

    1. Oh, I'm glad that I guessed right! I figured you would at least know the reference, being a well-read sort of person, but I'm very glad that it worked on multiple levels there. (Plus, of course, the public transit pun!)

  2. Very pretty! Makes me want to go on a campout, too. :)