More from Don's sketchpad

... something magic about pens and pencils

from Don Norris

Sketchbook from the 1980s .. pages are yellowing.

There are literally hundreds of sketches -- in pen or pencil -- that I have
recorded in a variety of sketchbooks, on pieces of scrap paper, or more
formally on canvas or watercolor paper. I never thought about ever becoming a
commercial artist -- I think my father discouraged me, telling my brother Doug
and me that there's no money in art.

Well, he was right.

More recent work with soft 8b pencils.

The problem was, however, that he never gave us a chance to be real artists.
As a result, Doug became an engineer building bigger and better atomic bombs
(forgive me for saying that) and I found a home in journalism. But neither one
of us ever gave up our pencils and sketch pads.

So what you see here is a small sample of those idle drawings I have done in
the past 80 years -- some are funny, some are good, some may be terrible --
and many were drawn without purpose. To tell the truth, I've been thinking
about putting all -- or most -- of those sketches in book form. Who knows,
maybe somebody will pay good money for the entertainment.

Doodling, and studies for a commercial job.

There was one summer when I was granted a $300 award to draw and paint,
following the trail of those marvelous masters of the Gloucester School. So I
packed all my goods in my old Volkswagen Kombi, with a sleeping bag, and took
off for Vermont. It was a great time, and I photographed, painted and drew
page after page of New England scenes. It was one of the greatest joys of my
life, to realize that the Arts Council thought enough of my talent to support
me with this trip. And many of those sketches are included in this article.

The marketplace near old Scollay Square, and a doodle for
a carving.

Me, to illustrate an article; and reworking some

I have no idea what this came from -- perhaps a news
clipping of some break-in? Anyway, it's an interesting piece.

January 4, 2012

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