Have you heard about The Sketchbook Project?

Before I get into it, if you want to participate in the next installment of The Sketchbook Project (SBP), you’ll need to order your sketchbook by January 31. You’ll then have until April 30 to fill it in and send it back for the exhibition which starts in June 2018.

Disclaimer: I purchased my SBP sketchbook with my own money. I was not paid or asked to write this post, nor do I benefit from any purchases. I am just really excited about this project and think other artists would be too. 🙂

But what is it?

A hand drawn icon of a sketchbook with text that says I'm submitting a sketchbook to the world's largest collection of sketchbooks.

The Brooklyn Art Library collects and displays sketchbooks from all over the world that have been completed and submitted by artists.

  1. The artist orders a sketchbook from the SBP website by January 31, 2018.
  2. The artist chooses a theme from the list of themes provided, interprets it how they wish (there are no rules in art), and completes the sketchbook.
  3. The artist mails the sketchbook back by April 30, 2018 to be included in the 2018 exhibition.
  4. The Brooklyn Art Library will include your sketchbook in the exhibition at their Brooklyn location or at one of the travelling locations. You can pay extra to have them digitize your book so you can view it online, but I didn’t pay for that. I’ll just scan it myself. 😉

Why would I want to participate?

The Sketchbook Project is fascinating to me and I wish I had time to stop in there when I was in New York. I love getting to peek into the processes of other artists, seeing the work they do when they think no one is going to see it. I’m addicted to sketchbook tour videos on YouTube; how lovely it is that you can go and hold these objects in your hands and flip through them IRL? Sure, one probably puts more thought into a sketchbook that they plan to send away to be on display, but I think it’s still just as enchanting to me.

What I’m doing with my sketchbook

I’ve chosen the theme People I Wish I knew, mostly because it fits best with what I had already planned for February which is flowers and quotes. I haven’t started collecting my quotes yet so all I have to do is make sure the quotes I pick are from people I wish I knew!

Since I didn’t pay the added fee to have them digitize the book for me, I will scan it myself, and I’m considering getting it printed in a mini zine format for myself. I like flipping through my sketchbooks and I don’t want to lose that tangibility when I send it away and am left with only a digital file.

Speaking of the digital library… Enter at your own risk. I easily lost two hours in there.

Are you participating in the project? Have you decided on a theme and/or process? Let me know in the comments!


A young person with long hair browses a wall of shelves filled with completed sketchbooks.

Photos provided by The Sketchbook Project/Brooklyn Art Library

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