Sketches from the Year-End and New Year Holiday 2021-2022 / 年末年始に描いたスケッチ

2021 was the busiest year for me. What I hate about being busy is that it undermines creativity. Overwork does not only cause decreased ti...

2021 was the busiest year for me. What I hate about being busy is that it undermines creativity. Overwork does not only cause decreased time of drawing, but also diminishes the ability of appreciating art. I was uninspired for the last few months. So, I decided to spend time winding down and immersing myself in drawing during the year-end and New Year holiday. Here are some of the results.

2021年は思いがけず本業に忙殺される一年になりました。忙しくなると嫌なのは、自分のクリエイティブな面がすり潰されていくこと。単純に描く時間が減るだけではなく、アートを楽しむ心の余裕や気力が削がれてしまうのです。そんなわけでここ数ヶ月は仕事の記憶しかなかったのですが、年末年始の休暇はしっかり休んで絵を楽しむことにしました。いくつか描いたものをシェアします。


December 31 (New Year's Eve)


I sketched a quiet back alley near Funabashi Station, which was busy with people out for shopping. I was also there to run errands, but squeezed in time to sketch. It was too cold to draw outside though... I think the simple ballpoint lines kind of match the bleakness of a cloudy winter day.

買い物に出かける人たちで混み合う船橋駅の裏側は、表の賑わいとは打って変わってもの静か。わたしも年末の買い出しで来ていましたが、スケッチする時間がとれました。とはいえ、この日は外で描くには寒すぎた……。ちょっと味気ないくらいのボールペンの線がかえって曇天の冬の日の寒々しさには合っている気がする。


January 2

Warm-up thumbnail sketch. I broke down the view into a few simple shapes. It worked out.

ウォーミングアップのサムネイルスケッチ。景色をいくつかの簡単な形に分解するようなイメージで描きました。うまくいったと思う。


January 3


It was relatively warm compared to the previous few days. I enjoyed strolling along the river and found a good spot to sketch at by the bridge. I sat on a stone step, watching two people fishing and recording the calm moment. My original intention was to make the bridge stand out. When I drew the wires, I thought they were unnecessary and extra. But, after I posted the sketch on Instagram, some people gave comments and told the wires are nice. Now I kind of like them.

数日前と比べて暖かかったこの日は、川沿いの散歩を楽しみ、途中でスケッチにちょうどいい場所を見つけました。石の階段に腰かけて、橋の下で釣りをする人を眺めながら穏やかなひとときをスケッチ。もともとは橋を目立たせたかったので、電線を描いたのは余計だったかなと思ったのですが、インスタに投稿したところ何人かが電線がいいとコメントをくれたので、これはこれであり。



Also I made a little collection of sketches of what I ate during the New Year's. My family doesn't have a full set of osechi (Japanese New Year foods) dishes, but only picks some favorites. For the first few days of the New Year, I craved for donuts for some reason. So, I visited a coffee shop which serves the best donuts as well as good coffee. These drawings were made in a RHODIA Touch Pen & Inkwash Book. Check out the reviews by Kumi-san and Shin-san on the RHODIA Touch products if you want to know more (Note: Only available in Japanese).

それから年末年始に食べたもののスケッチもまとめました。わが家ではきちんとしたおせちは用意せず、好きなメニューだけ作ったり買ったりします。年明けすぐ、なぜか妙にドーナツが食べたくなり、とにかく美味しいドーナツを出すコーヒー屋さん(コーヒーも美味しい)に行きました。ここのドーナツが一番ではないだろうか。食べものスケッチはサンプルでいただいたロディアタッチのペン&インクウォッシュブックに描いています。ロディアタッチ製品についてもっと知りたい方は久美さんシンさんのレビュー記事を読んでね。


As you can see, all the sketches above are simple. Not much time spent, not detailed or heavily worked on, but easygoing and relaxed. My current focus is on quickly and economically capturing a scene, like taking a snapshot. I've always stuck to this idea, but recently I got a new inspiration that stimulated my love for simple drawing.

ご覧の通り、どのスケッチもシンプルです。あまり時間はかけず、描き込まず、気楽に描いています。このところ意識しているのは、ささっとスナップを撮るような感覚でシーンを切りとること。常にそういう考えで描いてはいるのですが、最近さらにシンプルスケッチ愛を刺激される出来事があったのです。


Back to some time earlier...

On December 19, I hosted a small sketch meetup at my favorite neighborhood, Kuramae.

12月19日、お気に入りの下町エリア、蔵前でミニスケッチ会を行いました。

It was a fun time. See this post on Facebook for more photos.

とても楽しい時間でした。詳細はFacebookの投稿をご覧ください。


After the meetup, I visited a gallery/creative residency called Almost Perfect. An artist named Mariko Jesse hold her solo show there. She is a printmaker and illustrator, but she also sketches and it's her sketches that attracted me.

このスケッチ会の後、Almost Perfectというギャラリー/クリエイティブレジデンスに行き、ジェシー万里子さんという方の個展を見てきました。彼女は木版画やイラストの制作を仕事にしているのですが、素敵なスケッチも描かれるのです。

Simply drawn with pen and painted with large watercolor washes. I like this effortlessly achieved balance. Check out her Instagram for more artwork. Her illustration and mokuhanga works are lovely too.

シンプルなペンの線画とざっくりとした水彩の着色。気張らずにちょうどよく保たれたバランスが気持ちいいです。木版画やイラストもかわいいので、気になる方はインスタを見てみてください。


During the holiday, I also spent plenty of time at home just chilling and looking at other artists' drawings.

休暇中は、家でごろごろしながら他の人のスケッチを眺めるだけの時間もたくさんありました。


Name a couple of favorite sketchers...

I mentioned Elizabeth Alley in this interview. I'm a fan of her sketch journal, the everydayness of her sketches. They make me try to look harder at familiar things such as mugs and appreciate them.

Elizabeth AlleyさんについてはUSkJインタビューのなかでも名前を出しました。彼女のスケッチジャーナル、日々にスケッチが息づいてるかんじが好きです。彼女のスケッチを見ていると、マグカップみたいな何でもない身近なものももっとよく見て味わおうという気持ちにさせられます。


Last year, I introduced a workshop run by Lis Watkins on Facebook. She shared the details on her blog, so you can try.

去年、FacebookでLis Watkinsさんのワークショップを紹介しました。彼女自身のブログでも詳細が書かれているので、ワークショップの内容にチャレンジできます(記事は英語です)。


She's a skilled illustrator. I know her simple-looking sketches are elaborately composed and it's quite hard to balance the lines, colors, and white space like she does. But the general idea I learned from her is making every mark count and being brave to leave a lot of white space!

一見シンプルなスケッチはとても考え抜かれて構成されていて、プロのイラストレーターである彼女のように線と色と余白のバランスをとるのは至難の業です(まったく真似できません)。が、彼女のワークショップやスケッチからは、すべての線や形を活かすこと、余白をたっぷり残すのをためらわないことという基本的な考え方を学べると思います。


Here's what my winter holiday was like. It was great having time off to restore and recharge. How was your holiday? Which artist/sketcher inspires you? I'd love to hear. Also, I wish you all the best wishes for the new year. Stay safe and enjoy sketching. See you in my next post:)

ということで、わたしの年末年始はこんなかんじでした。久しぶりにゆっくりと休息できました。皆さんの年末年始はいかがだったでしょうか?最近好きなスケッチャーは誰でしょうか?そんな話もシェアしあえたら楽しいですね。最後になりますが、今年もよろしくお願いします。次の記事でお会いしましょう。

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Urban Sketchers Japan: Sketches from the Year-End and New Year Holiday 2021-2022 / 年末年始に描いたスケッチ
Sketches from the Year-End and New Year Holiday 2021-2022 / 年末年始に描いたスケッチ
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