Everyday Sketching

Pen and Watercolour in a Small Sketch Book

A tiny watercolour sketchbook

A few weeks ago, I was inspired by Gwenaelle Glotin’s video of  watercolour paintings in a tiny Moleskine sketchbook. I immediately bough a pocket Moleskine to start a similar project of my own. I was excited to fill it with sketches in pen and watercolour.

I have used the large Moleskine watercolour sketchbooks before and I really like them. Like its big brother, this small one has good slightly textured watercolour paper. It opens flat, so you can draw across a double page spread and has nice rounded corners.

Small Moleskine Watercolour Sketchbook
This Moleskine watercolour sketchbook is tiny – only about the length of a pen!

What to draw in such a small book

The book is tiny – about the length of a pen. When I first got it, I was unsure about what to draw in it and started to draw a couple of still life studies of fruit.

Pear and apple in watercolour and pen in small moleskine sketchbook
Pear and apple
Figs in watercolour and pen in small moleskine sketchbook
Figs – I liked the texture of the inside on these but it was difficult to render in the painting

It is interesting to take the time to study shapes and shadows in detail but I find the end results slightly bland. Maybe it is the artificial set up. Maybe I spent too much time on those as there was no sense of urgency. After all you don’t need to draw quick if your subject isn’t going to move.

Fun in pen and watercolour

I found that simple everyday scenes could be drawn quickly in a small format. I drew rough shapes in pencil first to make sure my drawing did fit in the page – the smaller size takes a bit of getting used to.

George on the Ipad
George on the ipad
Halloween pumpkin in watercolour and pen in small Moleskin Sketch Book
I had draw our Halloween pumpkin before we carved it. Drew my mug too as it was there. Think the text livens up the page. I like the contrast of the orange and blue.
Cake icing in pen and watercolour
Quickly drew this while George was rolling out icing for a pumpkin shaped Halloween cake. Got caught out by the small size of the sketchbook and had to draw him smaller than Katie so his head would fit in the page! I have a giant 5 year old, but I like the end result as it captures a moment in time.
Halloween cake in pen and watercolour
The finished (enormous) cake. Had to paint quick before the first trick or treaters arrived

That’s it so far. I think it will be good for quick drawings of small simple scenes in pen and watercolour.

Pen and Watercolour Drawing in Small Sketchbook by Sophie Peanut

2 Comments to “Pen and Watercolour in a Small Sketch Book”

  1. Yvonne Miles

    I was so inspired with meeting Valerie Wartelle and her wonderful felting at Art in Action that I followed her web site as soon as I got home and found you!
    Brilliant! Love your style, love the “simplicity” of your materials and methods – I do carry a similar set of materials with me BUT rarely actually use them.
    I must try harder!!

    1. Sophie Author

      Thanks Yvonne, Valerie not only makes beautiful artwork – she is a really nice lady too! I am glad you like my drawings. To get started, you could try to get your sketchbook out when you are waiting and have a few minutes to kill (much more fun than checking your phone). Cafes and trains are good to sketch people too. Quick 5 minutes sketches of small objects around the house can be good to get a habit started too. Let us know how you get on!


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