I've decided to make more time to sketch randomly, both for Rest & Relaxation (because when you can't be on a beach on your own private island with an endless supply of Margaritas, sketching is the next best thing) and because it will, of course, help me get better at drawing.  So I've started to be a lot more regular at filling in some of the pages in the forlorn empty sketchbooks that have been sitting on my shelves forever. I'm addicted to buying sketchbooks, and never take the time to draw in them, so I have quite a lot of guilt-inducing blank pages to make amends to. Ultimately, starting from now, I'd like to play around with new ideas, get braver about experimenting, exploring, trying new things and finding my schtick, if I even have one! (And if I ever find out what "Schtick actually means.)  I'd also like to recapture that feeling I remember so well from when I was a kid, when you sit down with a bunch of coloured pencils and paper you've nicked from your dad's office, and draw for hours just because it's fun. So, I came up with an entertaining way to fill one of those blank pages which didn't involve a lot of brainpower, and ended up juxtaposing some fairly strange ideas. I thought I'd share it in case anyone else wanted to try it. 

I call it "Handpainted Smithereens"

Step One - draw a series of randomly shaped frames on your page. 

Step Two - Take the letters of the word "SMITHEREENS". ( You can use any word, of course - try "antidisestablishmentarinism" if you've got a really big blank page and lots of time on your hands.) Type them one by one into Google Image search. Whatever Google's first auto-suggestion is, go with that. So, for instance - I typed "S" and Google suggested "Sia", and I said, "OK, Google, great idea! Why not?" Which made Google feel good. Then I had a range of images of Sia to choose from, and I drew one ... (top left hand frame, if you're wondering.)

The words I ended up with were: Sia, Map, Iconic, Toffee, Healthy, Ecdysiast, Rose Hancock, Earthquake... bugger. I just realised I missed an "E". Oh well ... Neocid (also know as DDT), and Soothsayer. 

The good thing about this if you're busy is you can do it bit by bit, and just go back whenever you have a spare moment and fill in the next little frame. My sketchbook is only A5, so my frames were tiny, which added to the challenge.

If anyone tries it, I'd love to see what you come up with. 

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