Crazy week

IMG_1497I am back in New York  for a couple of weeks — I was tired of lovely weather and plucking tangerines of my trees each morning. I need rain, cold and bagels.

Jack is here until Monday, meeting with artists/mentors about the upcoming summer, and we have spent a lot of time talking about art and philosophy and other sophomoric matters. Such fun. I haven’t seen him since New Year’s and while he seems to be stopping at 6’2″, his brain keeps growing. I am super-proud of this boy.

I lost my wallet when I was here last, a real pain in the back pocket I managed to laboriously replace every credit card, my license and all the rest of the ephemera that seems important. Then, when I got back here and opened my bed side drawer, I discovered my old wallet and all its contents lodged therein. Grrr.

The upcoming week is gonna be nutty.

On Friday morning, we launch the first semester of Sketchbook Skool.  We are pulling together the last strands and it is kind of amazing.  I took Jack through the klasses and videos yesterday and he was surprisingly surprised by it. “It’s really rich. You shoulda charged them more.” True, tuition is cheaper than I pay for RISD (oy!).

Here’s a little summary of the semester:

  • I’ll be talking about why we need to be creative and what happens if we suppress the urge. How to draw expressively and yet accurately. How to choose art supplies. And much more from L.A.!
  • Koosje on taming your inner critic. On drawing better with colored pencils and on braving the frigid outdoors. And a whole lot more from Amsterdam!
  • Prashant Miranda on 20 years of journaling, on travel, on watercoloring and on discovering your family history through your sketchbook. And much more from all around India!
  • Jane La Fazio on mixed media, on how to uncover beauty and on turning sketchbook pages into developed works of art. And much more from sunny Southern California!
  • Roz Stendahl on how to draw animals of any kind, alive or dead(!), and what are the best media to use and why. And loads more from snowy Minnesota!
  • Tommy Kane on how to turn mistakes into masterpieces, and how to combine ink, watercolors and colored pencil to make rich, beautiful journal pages. And heaps more from deep in Brooklyn.

On Friday afternoon, I talk at the Thinking Creatively conference at Keane College.

Then on Saturday, I go to the Open Center for my workshop, Everyday Matters. I am excited to launch some new ideas for this class and to meet some folks in person.

On Sunday, I go back to LA, to work on my next series of presentations in Columbus, Boston, California….

It also looks like I will be doing an artist-in-residency in Beijing and Kuala Lumpur this fall. Details are almost nailed down.

Busy. Crazy. All good.

35 thoughts on “Crazy week”

    1. You said it! Beijing will be full of stuff to draw! Go to the markets, hung around in parks. Pick any residential street corner and I guarantee you don’t move your butt for a week or two! Go to the Temple of Heaven to draw. What a place! Old ladies and gents playing cards, dancing tango, playing classical Chinese tunes. The almost 1000 year old cypresses! The quiet quarter of the western side of the park where people nap on the park benches. And if you need some real quiet time, go to the Ancient Observatory smack in the middle of the city and huddled between the busiest streets! It’s real nice and quiet, and the ancient astronomical gadgets are something else.


  1. Will be attending your Everyday Matters workshop on Saturday.So excited seeing that you reignited my passion for drawing years ago with your Creative License book! Can’t wait! About the Sketchbook Skool…is the deadline to sign up for it due prior to class beginning on April 4th? Would love to join but just shelled out a lot of $$ for my kids’ soccer uniforms and won’t be able to afford it until the 11th of April. Thanks!


    1. Paula, feel free to join klass late. However, you’ll have a wee bit of catching up to do and will have to bring a note from your kids’s soccer coach explaining your tardiness.


  2. Sounds like a ton of goodness for you! And I get to reap the benefits, too — as I am signed up for Sketchbook Skool and have been very excited for it to get started! Thank you for doing all that you are doing!


  3. Amazing how much father & son look alike. Mask out the hair and allow for a few wrinkles, AKA character lines, and it is the same face, gesture & all. Lovely!


  4. Oh, Danny, loved the picture of you and Jack! Yes, a young man to be proud of! As I did my “breakfast sketch” this morning( a sketchbook beside my plate to do a very quick energy sketch while my soulmate is cooking breakfast) I was thinking….a week from today…Sketch Skool!!!! Yes, you are charging too little, but it probably caused more who need the Klasses to jump in! Your schedule is busy and exciting and then the frosting on the cake …the residencies! Oooooo! Ya’ gotta’ keep us posted all during them! Enjoy!


  5. I’m coming to New York from the UK tomorrow for a week but it seems that I’ll just miss the Everyday Matters workshop as I fly back to London on an early morning flight on 5th April. Another time/place perhaps!


  6. Ah life! I’m getting excited about “Sokool” and wondering how it’s going to change my art, my life, me!? I’m grateful you kept the price doable for most of us.


  7. We’re hopping the train from Altoona, PA to take you workshop at the Open Center. Hubby and I will be the elderly couple there. Getting excited!


  8. Hey Danny, there is a saying that whatever you send out into the world will come back to you tenfold. What an amazing life drawing is giving you! Congrats on a son to be proud of, the advent of Sketch Skool and those residencies. Wow! Good luck and enjoy, you deserve it!


  9. First, love reading about you and Jack. He sounds amazing, as does your relationship. Second, thank you for keeping Skool affordable. I couldn’t have afforded it had you charged more. Third, BOSTON??? WHEN??? Can’t wait. Please share dates/details.


  10. Downsized out of my job, lost the court case, got the lawyers bill, all this just after buying that new car, so what softer place can I fall back to than art at an AFFORDABLE price!!!!


  11. Looking forward to the first klass on April 4th…just two days before my 73rd birthday. Funny but I don’t feel a day over 50. I am so lucky. I’ve been sketching and working in watercolors since 1991 and have enjoyed every day making art since then. Going on twenty-five years now. Time flies when you are having fun. I am just amazed how sketching has taken off with the books you have published. Austin Urban Sketchers is growing bigger each month because of your work and others as well. Keep it up!


  12. You are soooo focused and productive! Any comments on this? I know it demands awareness and time management, and discipline. I am in the process of resculpting my days, and finding the right rhythm takes patience. So great to have Jack by your side. Has he met an adorable RISD freshman named Ali? She is my dear old friend’s daughter. Just returned home from a few days in NYC, visiting our daughter. Had the best breakfast at a wonderful place called Cupping room.


  13. Jack looks just like you and sounds like he’s as talented and as smart as his dad.
    WOW! to the artist-in-residency. An honor indeed.
    Thanks for keeping the price as it is (Shhh Jack, don’t tell him he could’ve charged more) although watching the previews and reading the summaries it sounds terribly expensive. ha ha Glad I already signed up.
    I see you’ll be in Columbus…I live very close to Columbus…wish I could attend.
    See you in Sketchbook Skool.


  14. Danny…been loving and inspired by your blog for a long long time. Now here’s my question. I don’t want to journal, I don’t want to draw in coloured pencils or markers. But what I do want is to paint EVERY DAY on canvas in acrylics and oils. and I don’t want to be overly representational. And what I do want is a kick up the bum to get on with it. And some more insights into why I don’t. Is And to capture the essence, but not necessarily the absolute likeness, of what I paint.
    (Background:7 years at art college in UK but primarily studying film and TV production)

    Is Sketchbook Skool for me?


  15. Hi Danny I’m having difficulty signing up for sketchbook skool. But I have a friend helping me sign up. I’ll keep you posted.


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