I am excited about the many travel journals I have already assembled, but am always eager to see new ones. If you have any artists you’d like me to consider for inclusion in my new book, An Illustrated Journey, send me information and links or post them here under comments. I am mainly interested in journals that include both drawing or painting and writing too. Thanks!
My favorite travel companion is a nice, fresh sketchbook. I can see my new environment with more depth and perspective when I record scenes from the journey in ink and watercolor. Sitting with a pen or brush in my hand sears the sights and sounds into my memory and into the pages of my book. While I love recording the bits and bobs of my everyday life, my richest journals are the ones I filled when traveling to new places.
Which brings me to the subjects of my newest book, to be published in 2013 by HOW Books. HOW did a wonderful job with my last book, An Illustrated Life, and they are as excited as I am about bringing out another compendium, this time entirely focused on the art of illustrated travel journals.
I am just at the beginning of the process of compiling this book and am still assembling an incredible roster of artists from all corners of the world. I intend to include people who have visited exotic places as well as those who just travel to the mall.
I also plan to create a video podcast with interviews with my contributors so we can all see them at work and learn first hand how they make their art. It will be fantastic!
I’ll be busy with two books in the works. I will be finishing up the first draft of my next book for Chronicle this fall and then continue sifting, gathering, visiting and interviewing people for An Illustrated Journey. I’ll keep you updated on my progress — I hope you’ll come along for the trip.
Barj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, stands across the road from my hotel. Last night, as I was on my way to the hotel gym, my colleague waylaid me and insisted I come to the top for a sunset cocktail.
Minutes later, we were at the foot of the building, the sun bobbling on the horizon.
Our friend had made reservations at the bar, Atmosphere, and we were ushered into the express elevator. Seconds later, ears popping we were on the 123rd floor.
The city stretched before us. Zillions of wild skyscrapers, all lit up. It was like looking out of the window of a plane, too high to even trigger my vertigo.
Many of the buildings are still under construction. Their windows are dark but cranes are strung with lights.
After a martini and some snacks, we paid an exorbitant bill, and descended to reality again.
Our cast and crew worked together to make swift progress.
I am in Dubai for ten days, shooting in the desert and other parts of this exotic, peculiar place. Late June is probably not the optimal time to visit this corner of the planet — I have never experienced the sort of oven-heat that suffocates the place over after 9 a.m.
90% of the people in Dubai are not from here. They come in search of opportunity and a piece of the oily pie. Our crew is English, American, German, Pakistani, Indian and me.
My journal looks a little more austere than usual. I only brought my trusty Lamy Safari fountain pen with me and a Q-tip made a serviceable brush. If you click on this picture, you can see a blowup of the page and read my most intimate thoughts.
Some thoughts on my neighbor, the world’s tallest building.
I’ll try to post some more notes over my remaining days in Dubai.