Soul Sketching: A creative practice building joy and resilience

“I keep a diary in order to enter the wonderful secrets of my life. If I didn't write them down, I should probably forget all about them." - Oscar Wilde



Journaling and sketching helps keep my thoughts sorted, and it's especially important in this bananas time. As news cycles continue to shock and the health crisis continues to change, I find capturing observations and emotions critical.


Soul Sketching is unguided moving meditation. Observing and recording thoughts and emotions in a creative way helps develop your comfort with materials, mark making, and yourself. The creative process will lead you to new observations, and a deeper connection with your self.


Write down your thoughts. Record your observations, dreams, experiences. Create an account to go back to - when you think "it wasn't that bad" or maybe "gosh what was that about," you can turn back and remember some of the details that we'll forget by tomorrow.




Your canvas is the material you work on - it can be paper, cloth - anything that you can draw or color on! I like to start small - 5 x 5, 5 x 7 - it feels more manageable. When considering paper, cold press has more bumps. Hot press is smoother. Different weights and thicknesses may appeal to you as well. Don't worry too much if you're just beginning - pick one, you'll learn as you go!

I do have a favorite notebook - the Handbook Journal Company Travelogue Drawing Book. The paper is excellent for light multimedia - it can take pen, pencil, marker, acrylic and watercolor easily, and is sturdy enough for light collage as well. Shop through this link!


The medium is any material you work with - pen, crayon, ink, watercolor, oil paint, pigments, clay. I work with pencil, pen and watercolor for soul sketching - they are quick drying, compact, easy to travel with and flexible!

Over the last couple years, I have been loving the Woodlands watercolor palette from Prima Marketing - the compact case and balanced color palette are so beautiful. Here's the link for that palette:

The Classic Palette is also excellent: bold primary and secondary colors, in the same metal tin. Perfect to keep in a small pouch and carry wherever you might go! Follow this link:

For watercolor brushes, the UPINS series with integrated well is also a great set for easy brushwork: 


You don't need any specific materials to begin - you can use any paper and pens in your home! Exploring materials is part of the process - you may discover that you have a preference, or use this as a means to try all kinds of new tools and techniques. There's no rules!


Carve out some time - 10 minutes, an hour, whatever you can. Clear a space. Take a deep breath. Get some music going. Consider your canvas. Make a mark; then make some more. Connect the dots. Add some lines. Fill in with color. Add some words - a poem, a headline, your feelings; include the date. Let the process guide you. Take a pause, look at your piece, keep going!

Take a break... then do it again. And then, again.


As you develop a collection of journals, it can become a delight to flip back through them as a record of time. I am always amazed at the themes I rediscover.



Starting Thursday, February 4, I'll be going live on Google Meet at 7pm central time. Sketch with me. Journal with me. Record this time, for you're in the middle of history, and it's worth remembering.

You're not alone in these explorations! Share your work on Instagram, and use the tag #soulsketching to join others on the journey!


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