Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Festival of Faith and Writing Sketchnotes Part Three

Last week at the Festival of Faith and Writing in Grand Rapids, Michigan, I sketchnoted the sessions I attended.

By Day Three of the Festival, most of us are feeling tired and full of new information and ideas, but still ready to learn from the speakers.  My plans included an illustrator, an improv artist, and another session with Dinty W. Moore.

First, I attended a session with author and illustrator John Hendrix.  Dang, I love his work.  I had seen his sketchbook stuff before this, but I hadn't seen his books before.  I appreciated his emphasis on how much he studied and practiced to learn to work with type as an integral part of his artwork.  He talked about the process of creating his forthcoming middle grade graphic novel, The Faithful Spy.  I appreciated his analysis of that medium, and how he meddled with it to bring forth his vision (some traditional sequential comics, some more illustration). 

For my second session of the day, I attended one led by MaryAnn McKibben Dana, an author, improv artist, and creativity coach.  She works with improvisation as a spiritual practice, which is something I have believed in for decades.  Improvisation  is what guides most of my sketching and watercolor work.  It has a lot to do with how I lead my college classes.  Of course, I'm not as good at it as I wish I could be (especially about the "loving the limits" stuff), but sessions like this serve as great reminders!

Finally, I attended a conversation session with Dinty W. Moore, whom I had heard speak the day before as well.  He has such a warm and inviting presence.  His discussion of the hermit crab essay forced me to have to draw one (and thank heavens I actually have a little plastic hermit crab at home which I have sketched and so I had a tiny tiny inkling of how to do it!).

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