"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel sake. The great affair is to move."
~ Robert Louis Stevenson, 1879
"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page."
~ St. Augustine, c. 390
Here's a picture of me in front of the Magasin Sennelier, an art supply store in Paris. They're only open on certain days so check ahead if you plan to get your supplies there. I recommend a pocket Moleskine sketchbook because they are easy to carry and they have a pocket in the back to hold a cash card and some money for a day. They also are durable and survive well on travel excursions as well as once you return home. I use archival materials so they last. I like ink pens for their durability and they don't smear when I add watercolor over the top of a drawing. Ink is portable and when I'm moving around I don't plan on erasing or reworking much. I'm mostly interested in capturing some visual information and moving on the way most people use a camera. Sometimes my greatest opportunities to do this are when I'm on public transportation, waiting, eating, or if I see something I just have to stop and draw. If I'm planning on sitting down and spending some time working on a drawing or painting I sometimes also travel with a larger Moleskine (they sell them with watercolor paper too) or a medium size watercolor block. To do this requires planning for packing luggage so I can transport the materials and finished paintings. Staying at a picturesque villa is a great opportunity to work with larger materials without having to tote them around for a day.
Here are three suggestions for materials I have used to incorporate art and travel.
1). Pocket Moleskine and pens. The pens can be just black or you can add a few colors. This set is easy to carry and adaptable to all opportunities to sketch. This set up easily fits in pockets. I like this set up for making sketches on an airplane.
2). Larger Moleskine, pens and a small watercolor kit. This set up provides a larger format to develop more information in a composition. This may benefit from a coat with the right pockets or a day bag to carry the materials. I like this set up for lightweight day travel and using minimal space in luggage.
3). Both of the above plus a watercolor block, larger watercolor kit, more brushes and a portfolio to contain materials and finished works. This is for an artist interested in accomplishing a greater scope of work. It provides a flexible set of materials to adapt to a variety of opportunities while traveling. It also requires some planning for packing your luggage. I like this set up when I know I’m going to have time to set up and work for a couple of hours at a time or if my goals include developing a larger work of art from the subject material I’m visiting.
You can get 20% off your order at Daniel Smith Art supplies through our resource page. I’d be glad to answer questions and help you make a Sketchy Art Kit.
~ Chaucer Silverson
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Why wouldn't you want to go to France? History, art, food, wine, what else is there?