Happy New Year!

As always at this time of year, I set about doing new work - to use the "quiet" time of January and February to explore new ways of doing things, new ideas. 

I've been interested for a while in Leporello sketchbooks - often called concertina sketchbooks. I made a few of these for friends and family as Christmas gifts. Why do they excite me so much? Well, I love the idea of just carrying on a panorama - on and on, as if you're going on a walk, but I also love picture books. A concertina book offers the opportunity to create a continuous picturebook. Rather than telling a story, it takes you for a walk, a chance to imagine,ruminate and observe.

This is one of the books I made recently:forest concertina sketchbook

It is an imaginative composition of my daily forest walk.

I began to imagine doing something like this for my familiar townscapes - like Ballydehob, for example. Rather than placing head-on facades beside each other, I'd like to explore walking through the town, with the perspective constantly shifting as we move. Even as I'm writing this, I'm getting more ideas - so this  recent drawing already seems too strict and tight to me:

concertina sketchbook ballydehob

You can imagine how this would take you through the whole town, shifting perspectives all along - and then folds up into a beautiful little book...

I suspect the key to the idea may lie in actually getting out and doing my drawings on the street - but I'm finding it quite cold and hardy (and mainly wet) at the moment, so I'm working off photographs. But the information they reveal is quite limited. I shall keep working!

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