Welcome to The Great Affair!
My name is Candace, and I'm a writer and sketch artist with a passion for connection. Have a look around, or say hello at [email protected] Thank you for stopping by!

“In order to work and to become an artist one needs love. At least, one who wants sentiment in his work must in the first place feel it himself, and live with his heart.”

— Vincent van Gogh

My friends, yesterday marked a rather special anniversary for me — six years ago, I created my first on-location travel sketch.

On January 29th, 2011, I woke up in Porto, Portugal, on a solo weekend trip from London, where I was studying at the time towards a Masters in Travel Writing. And for the first time ever, I had brought a sketchbook and set of 12 watercolor pencils with me. After a long bike ride along the coast that morning, to see where the city’s Duoro River meets the Atlantic Ocean, I sat down in a glass-walled restaurant for lunch, feasted on a delicious francesinha sandwich, and at last, began drawing the scene in front of me:

Travel sketch Portugal

That first moment with my sketchbook in Porto has slowly grown in meaning throughout the years, becoming something of an “origin myth” for my love of travel sketching — I’ve written about it on my About page, in my sketching manifesto for National Geographic’s Intelligent Travel site, and in the Travel Sketching 101 ebook I just shared with you all last week.

Today, I want to start at that first sketch from Porto and work my way forward through time, sharing 60 sketches that mark my evolution as a sketch artist since 2011. While the most difficult part of putting this post together was choosing just which sketches to include, I forced myself to stick to one guiding principle — every set of sketches included here represents a turning point or transformative moment for me as an artist. 

So often in life, change or growth happens intangibly; as artists, I love that we’re blessed to have such a visual record of our evolution. Here’s a look at mine over the past six years:

Sketch artist in Myanmar

In my happy place: sketching on-location in Bagan, Myanmar (you might recognize this session’s set-up from the cover of Travel Sketching 101!).

*   *   *

2011 — The year I discovered a sketching hobby

A seed was planted during that fateful January weekend in Portugal, but only on a serendipitous, three-month journey to India later that year did the seed of my love for sketching take root and begin growing into something real.

I now find it no accident that my first trip to India and South Asia took place during my first year of travel sketching. India can be incredibly overwhelming — it’s crowded and chaotic, and it often moves fast enough to render you dizzy. Every time I took my sketchbook out in India, sketching was my way of slowing the chaos down; I could enter the eye of the storm, and suddenly look on at the scene around me with clear eyes and renewed perspective.

There’s one moment in particular I remember from that trip — I was sitting on a rooftop café in Kathmandu, Nepal, with a glass of fresh lime soda, my sketchbook, and a panoramic view of Durbar Square before me. But for the first time, I wasn’t going to sketch with watercolor pencils; I had a small kit of watercolor paints with me, that had been a birthday gift from two dear friends. My last watercolor lesson had taken place more than a decade earlier, when I was 13 years old — did I even remember how to use them?

Slowly, I dipped the kit’s little brush in a little bit of water, swirled it against a little bit of red paint, and began filling in the scene with color — and thereby took my first shaky step in rediscovering a love for watercolors.

That was 2011’s lesson for me: Sometimes, it’s okay to not know what you’re doing.

Travel sketch Nepal

Travel sketch Kathmandu Nepal

Travel sketch Nepal

Travel sketch India

Travel sketch India

Travel sketch India

Travel sketch India

Travel sketch India

*   *   *

2012 — The year I shared my first sketches with the world

At the beginning, sketching was just a hobby for me — and more importantly, it was personal. I only shared my sketchbook with a few close friends (and my lovely mother, of course).

But one day in the summer of 2012, I had an epiphany in the shower — that place where epiphanies so often like to arrive: that I would make sketching my niche in the world of travel writing. I had heard the phrase, “Find your niche,” at nearly every writing conference and workshop I’d ever been to, but I had always struggled to define myself. That morning, though, I immediately set up a new page on my blog called “Travel Sketches,” uploaded several sketches to it, and a few days later, flew to San Francisco for the Book Passage Travel Writers & Photographers Conference.

One of the conference’s founders was renowned travel writer and editor Don George, whom I had long considered a personal hero; to say that I was nervous about meeting him in person would be a serious understatement. And yet the first thing Don said to me after we met was, “I think I just looked at your website last night — you have the page of travel sketches on it, right?”

“Why, yes I do,” I all but stammered to him in reply.

“Your sketches are beautiful,” he said. “You should do more with them.”

Isn’t it amazing how only a few words from a person we admire can have a lasting effect on us? Directly after the conference, I returned to India and spent another nine months in Asia. And everywhere I went that fall — from India to Indonesia to a village of Moken sea gypsies on Thailand’s Surin Islands — I carried my sketchbook with me. Because after two years, sketching was no longer just a hobby; it was becoming one of my passions.

That was 2012’s lesson: If you love doing something, keep doing more of it.

Travel sketch India

Travel sketch Indonesia

Travel sketch Indonesia

Travel sketch Indonesia

Travel sketch Indonesia

Travel sketch Thailand

Travel sketch Thailand

Travel sketch Thailand

*   *   *

2013 — The year sketching became the reason I travel

“What if I sketched my way around Southeast Asia?”

That question was the inspiration for a six-week journey I started planning in the spring of 2013, to close out that particular chapter of living in Asia. For the first time, sketching wouldn’t just be something I did while traveling — it would be the very reason for the trip. I loved waking up each day — whether it was in Singapore, Malaysia, or Laos — and striking out with my sketchbook and watercolors, my only mission to draw the world around me:

Travel sketch Southeast Asia

Travel sketch Singapore

Travel sketch Malaysia

Travel sketch Japan

Travel sketch Laos

I returned to the U.S. in the summer of 2013, and published my first book, Beneath the Lantern’s Glow: Sketches and Stories from Southeast Asia and Japan. Later that summer, I had the opportunity to meet with a publishing company that specializes in illustrated books, specifically with the company’s president and one of its editors. 

The editor and I chatted for a while, as the president sat quietly beside us, reading through a copy I’d given him of Beneath the Lantern’s Glow. After he finished, the president leaned forward, made some kind observations about my sketches, and then said:

“But you might want to consider varying your angles — many of your sketches are all done from the same angle, with a directly front-on perspective to your subject. You know how in a movie, there’s different shot angles? There’s shots from above, from below, zoomed in, zoomed out… Try to think cinematically when you’re choosing your subject.”

That was the second conversation I had about sketching that left an indelible mark on me. As it just so happened, I had another sketching trip lined up — this time to Eastern Europe and Turkey — and I was determined to put the president’s insights and advice into practice. As a travel writer, I had learned the value of zooming in and out in a story, balancing broad descriptions of a place with a closer focus on its details; it was time to start thinking the same way as a sketch artist.

That was 2013’s lesson: Be open to change, and to people who can help you grow.

Travel sketch Turkey

Travel sketch Bosnia

Travel sketch Bosnia

Travel sketch Bulgaria

Travel sketch Turkey

Travel sketch Turkey

Travel sketch Turkey

*   *   *

2014 — The year I started sketching for National Geographic

In August of 2014, I set out on my third big sketching trip — this time to the northern half of South America. I was slowing down more and more as a sketch artist, and learning to take my time in a new place; on this trip, I would visit only three countries and spend at least a week in each destination, specifically to sketch it from as many angles as possible.

On my first stop — the beautiful colonial city of Cartagena, Colombia — I was even more focused. All week, I hardly ventured beyond the historic walled part of the city known as La Ciudad Amurallada. And even then, I focused my time in the old town on a single plaza, where my sketchbook helped me draw countless rich connections: I got to know colorfully dressed fruit vendors, street sweepers and security guards, and a roving coffee seller named Wilmet, his wooden case of thermoses always in tow.

I hadn’t seen so much color in one place since India; so in a way, trying to capture Cartagena’s vivid spectrum in my sketchbook felt like a homecoming.

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Colombia

But there was one more impetus for my trip to South America:

I was there to sketch on assignment for National Geographic’s Intelligent Travel site.

It had all happened rather serendipitously — forever my favorite way for things to unfold in life. Earlier that year, a guest post of my sketches from India that I wrote for another travel blog just happened to get mentioned in one of Intelligent Travel’s weekly roundups, which led me to reach out to Intelligent Travel’s editor and introduce myself, which then led to my first post for the site, called “Travel Sketching: A Manifesto.”

As my relationship with the editor grew, she asked me where I was headed next. I told her I was thinking about South America; perfectly enough, she said they were always looking for more content from that part of the world. We then agreed on stories for me to research and sketch during my trip — a 5-day trek to Colombia’s La Ciudad Perdida; a homestay experience in rural Ecuador; and finally, the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu.

When I read over my first contract with National Geographic, which said I was to provide “3-6 illustrations to publish online to complement each piece,” I could hardly believe the assignment. Miraculously, and entirely by chance, I’d found my niche.

That was 2014’s lesson: Your passions can become your profession.

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Colombia

Travel sketch Ecuador

Travel sketch Peru

Travel sketch Machu Picchu Peru

*   *   *

2015 — The year I returned to my sketching roots

After South America, I flew to Greece to sketch a live mural during a travel blogging conference, where I happened to meet the destination marketing team from the Costa Brava region of Catalonia, Spain. We developed a fun rapport over the weekend, so much so that by the end of the conference, I had the courage to pitch them an idea:

“What if I came to the Costa Brava as a sketch artist-in-residence?”

Amazingly the team said yes, so in March of 2015, I arrived in Girona, Spain, and spent the next six weeks doing exactly what I’d loved doing most in Cartagena:

Slowing down, drawing as much as possible, and creating deeper connections through my sketchbook.

Travel sketch Spain

Travel sketch Spain

Travel sketch Spain

Travel sketch Spain

Travel sketch Spain

Travel sketch Spain

There was only one thing: Throughout the residency, I used sketchbooks made with my favorite type of watercolor paper, Canson Montval, which was also the same paper I used for my professional art commissions. And because there would be an exhibit of my framed sketches in the region afterwards, I created larger sketches than normal, measuring 7” x 10”.

The result was that I spent upwards of 6-7 hours on each sketch — and at some point, it felt like I crossed the line from creating impromptu sketches to polished paintings.

“I feel like I’ve strayed from my sketching roots,” I shared with one of my best friends and fellow sketch artists, Cara Kozik.

I told Cara that part of the problem was the sketchbook I was using — that not only was it too big, but the paper was actually too nice. I could keep working the paint for as long as I needed to. Cara encouraged me to “downsize,” so before leaving for Central America that summer, I bought a Moleskine pocket watercolor notebook, each page measuring only 3.5” x 5”.

In Guatemala, I was amazed by how fast the paint dried on the page, and that I couldn’t keep working over it. This meant I spent way less time on each sketch — and more importantly, it meant that I was sketching more “in the moment” again, and catching those smaller, fleeting memories that make a journey. In some ways, it felt like I was starting all over again as a sketch artist — but at the same time, I was starting over on a foundation that took me five years to build.

That was 2015’s lesson: There can always come a time to “begin again.”

Travel sketch Guatemala

Travel sketch El Salvador

Travel sketch Guatemala

Travel sketch Guatemala

Travel sketch Guatemala

Travel sketch Guatemala

*   *   *

2016 — The year I settled into myself as an artist

Since I started sketching, 2016 was the first year that didn’t hold either a breakthrough conversation or a major change to my style or supplies — instead, it felt like I’d finally settled into myself, both as an artist and as a person.

On a trip to Paris last June, I even had the chance to visit Giverny — the village in northern France where Claude Monet’s beautiful pink home and gardens are located. I’d grown up loving a book called Linnea in Monet’s Garden, and was especially enchanted by images of his iconic Japanese bridge. As I sat directly on the garden’s sidewalk that day and began drawing the bridge for myself, I felt the same heady rush that had coursed through me when sketching Machu Picchu for National Geographic — that rush of experiencing gratitude, wonder, and disbelief all at once.

But at the same time, I love that I wasn’t able to finish painting my sketch of Giverny on-location. It started raining that afternoon, but before running for cover, I pulled my raincoat over my head, fashioned a kind of makeshift tarp above my sketchbook, and sat there only long enough to color in the bridge — and here’s the thing:

I’m not sure I’ll ever fill in the rest.

One of the things I believe most about sketching is that it isn’t intended to be finished, polished artwork. Every sketch is perfectly imperfect and completely incompleteand as artists, so too are we ourselves always perfectly imperfect. For me, my un-finished sketch from Giverny is a fitting representation of this belief.

That was 2016’s lesson: No matter where we’re at on our journey, we are enough.

Travel sketch Giverny France

Travel sketch Sweden Norway

Travel sketch Norway

Travel sketch Norway

Travel sketch Buenos Aires Argentina

Travel sketch Northern Ireland

*   *   *

Which brings us to 2017 — the year I start sharing what I’ve learned

As I sifted through hundreds of sketches for this post, it was funny to see what has and hasn’t changed over the years. Many of my mediums and methods have evolved — for instance, I no longer leave white space in a sketch, and I’ve learned a lot about creating a sense of depth through light and shadows. Most noticeably of all, the notes and annotations I’ve written into my sketches from the beginning have grown larger and more legible as I’ve shared them more online.

But in other ways, not much has changed at all — apparently I’ve always been drawn to sketch markets, especially piles of bright, colorful fruit; I’ve always loved streetscapes and buildings, especially those with religious significance; and cafés and restaurants continue to be my favorite place to sketch from, since that very first sketching session in Portugal.

Having now settled into myself and my style as an artist, I feel charged to begin sharing what I’ve learned with you all. I loved launching the Travel Sketching 101 ebook last week; I’ve been humbled to watch our Moment Catchers sketching challenge and global community grow; and every week, I look forward to reading your follow-up comments and emails, especially from those of you at the beginning of your own creative journey.

For that was my true motivation in putting this post together — not only to celebrate these past six years of growing as a sketch artist, but to say to each of you:

I have so been there on the starting line, with no idea what I was doing.

I have learned the power of seeking out advice and asking “what if?”

And I have realized just how vital regular practice is to our evolution:

Practice may not make perfect, but I love how it makes us stronger artists, ever more capable of catching our singular vision of the world in our sketchbooks.

Travel sketch Uruguay

Travel sketch artist

One very happy sketch artist, after our first Moment Catchers challenge in January.

*   *   *

PS – Mark your calendars! Our next Moment Catchers sketching challenge is this weekend,
February 4-5, so I can’t wait to see the sketches and artwork you all create.

  • Brenda K

    I’m gobsmacked! Your journey is a dream, an inspiration! I love how you have been so relentless in pursuing your passion but also how you didn’t force things to happen. I just got into sketching this past year AFTER living in Korea (1 year), Japan (2 years), Australia (2 years), Turkey (2 years) and Malaysia (2 years), plus tons of travelling to other places. I was into photography so I’ve definitely got all my adventures well documented, but man… I would love to go back and sketch everything I’ve seen! My intense travel days are done, but I’m looking for beauty and adventure in the everyday, and I can do that. I love your posts and your enthusiasm. Thanks for your generosity in all you share. 🙂

    • Brenda! I’m not even sure where to start 🙂 Firstly, thank you so much for sharing about where your own journey has taken you in the world–what an incredible roundup of places to have called home! I also can’t tell you how much I loved this line here: “I’m looking for beauty and adventure in the everyday, and I can do that”–amen and amen 🙂 And with all of the photos you took of your journeys, I love that you’re perfectly set up to begin sketching favorite moments from your time in each place using your photos–and I couldn’t imagine a better way to honor being immersed in so many different cultures. Thank you again for sharing that, and for your kind words–I can’t wait to keep following your beautiful sketches on Instagram! <3

  • First of all, an absolutely spectacular piece. So cool to see the visual evolution of your art and learn the catalysing moments. In many ways, I read your journey as an artist as equally an evolution as a traveler – the process of slowing down, honing in, being more deliberate. Amazing inspiration that our dreams can turn into more than hobbies! Thank you!

    • Brittany, you put all of that so perfectly–but of course! “Catalysing moments” is such a perfect way to describe the turning points in this piece…thank you for sharing that phrase. And you’re exactly right about how I’ve almost grown as an artist and traveler at the same time…especially because so often these days, the two roles even feel like one and the same for me 🙂 It is wonderful as always to be connected with you, and now my fingers are just crossed our actual paths cross in the world sooner rather than later! <3

  • Nancy Bardos

    Love seeing you blossom! Thank you for this very lovely and truly inspirational treat showing us your personal and artistic evolution. A joy to witness.

    • Thank you so much, Nancy! And I can’t believe it’s almost been three years since we first connected online–I’m still hoping that our paths will cross in person one day and we’ll have the chance to create some art together 🙂 Sending big hugs from Uruguay!

  • Candace — you are so gifted and I just love seeing your work. Bon voyage for many more journeys.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, Marianne! I’m so glad you enjoyed the sketches 🙂

  • Charmaine

    Thanks for sharing your journey! Your work is so inspiring. I’ve just started travel writing and it’s so refreshing to see that your success was build on lots of hard work and it still look several years. Something for me to look towards. Thanks!

    • I’m so happy to hear this post resonated with you, Charmaine! And especially that my experience could be of encouragement to you as you begin your own journey as a travel writer 🙂 It has definitely taken a lot of hard work, patience, and tenacity, but I do think that if you continue to be true to yourself, it’s possible to carve your own path. Cheering you on from Uruguay! <3

  • Kathe Byrne

    Love seeing the evolution and persistence. Also your own recognition of where you have been and the pivotal moments. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank you so much, Kathe! As focused as we can often be on moving forward in life, putting this post together reminded me of the value in looking back, and how those times of reflection can reveal what our most pivotal moments were. I loved taking the time to look back last week, and I’m equally glad to hear you enjoyed the post 🙂 <3

  • Amanda Thompson

    Thanks for sharing your experience and insights, Candace. I will no doubt return to read them again many times as there is much to learn within. Your artwork most definitely evolves but that said I love your style right from the beginning. I do think, just like with everything in life, the emotion behind really makes it come alive.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, Amanda! And I do have to apologize for stuffing this post so full of things I’ve learned 🙂 I realize it’s quite a lot of info for one post, so I’m happy to hear you might return in the future to read it. And speaking of beginnings, I just have to say how happy I am that we connected at the start of your own journey as a sketch artist–I’ve loved seeing your sketches so far, and I can’t wait to watch your style evolve throughout the year. So looking forward to your sketches from our next challenge this weekend! 🙂

  • Thanks for opening your sketchbooks and taking us along your journey(s) Candace! I always loved and still love the way images and words melt together in your artworks…
    Saludos a Uruguay y lo que pases bien! 🙂

    • Thank you so much, Oliver! And I’m so glad you enjoyed this little look into my sketchbooks. It was equally interesting for me to look back over my own journey, and give some deeper thought to what has and hasn’t changed. Thank you as well for your kind wishes–estoy mandando mis saludos y abrazos a ti también! 🙂

  • Dipti

    Love, your sketches are making me dream travelling the whole world! I have not traveled yet much except some domestic travels in India but your blog shows me that even I can showcase my travelling experiences like you do and cherish the memories later on. I just loved the way you have sketched everything around you while travelling and I am awfully thankful to you for this. You know everybody dies but not everybody lives. You are doing something that shows you are LIVING! Keep it up!

    • Dipti, I can’t thank you enough for your incredibly kind words and encouragement here–that means so much! I’m so happy and honored to hear that both my sketching style and my sketching philosophy resonated with you, and that they’ve even inspired you to begin doing the same to capture your own moments from life in India. I also just wanted to say that although I often refer to sketching as “travel sketching,” I truly don’t think it has a lot to do with traveling itself 🙂 For me, sketching is actually just a mindset of being more open, alive, and aware of the world around us–and that world could mean even our own backyards. I so hope you’ll have the chance to start sketching your world in India, and also that you’ll share some of your sketches with us! <3

      • Dipti

        Yes Candace! For sure! Would like to meet you! Please let me know if you come to India!

        • I absolutely will, Dipti! I can’t wait to get back to India one day 🙂

  • Katherine Thomson

    Magnificent! I love your style and it is so interesting to see and hear how it has evolved. Thank you for sharing. It is so inspiring.

    • Thank you so much, Katherine! I’m thrilled to hear this post resonated with you 🙂

  • Kar

    Thank you for sharing your journey and taking us along this beautiful path of being. It has inspired me to start sketching, even with my sketchy skills, but your infectious enthusiasm is so encouraging, I promise myself not to give up. Muchisimas gracias de nuevo, Candace.

    • Kar, your comment brought me so much joy to read today. Thank you first of all for sharing the phrase “path of being”–I hadn’t thought of my own journey quite like that before, but now it feels like such a perfect way to describe it 🙂 I also just couldn’t be happier to hear you’ve promised yourself not to give up on your sketching journey…please know I will be cheering you on from Uruguay, and that I am here for any question or moment of doubt you might have along the way. Muchisimas gracias a ti, Kar, and I’ll be sending an email your way very soon as well! <3

  • Roberta Charles

    So nice traveling with you on your journeys through life. Your sketches are so beautiful and how interesting it was to see the evolution of your style. I gave my copy of your book “Under the Lantern’s Glow” to my grandson who just returned from a month’s trip to Japan and Taiwan. Hopefully, he’ll submit a story of his travels. He got very excited to see a sketch of a place in Japan, that he had taken a photo of, so beautifully rendered in your book. Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful journey. Happy Trails.

    • Thank you so much, Roberta! I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this post and watching my style evolve over the years. I also loved hearing that your grandson just returned from beautiful Japan, and how fun to learn there was a connection between my book and somewhere he’d visited on his own journey–as you know well, those connections always leave me inspired 🙂 I hope you’re having a wonderful 2017 so far, and are enjoying winter in the Adirondacks!

  • Sunny Christian

    Candace, I really enjoyed reading this and poring over your sketches, and you know what? (I think) you have improved as an artist, and I loved the lessons you picked up along the way in unexpected ways, ie, not some formal form of travel sketching instruction. And it encourages me, because altho my sketches do not even look like your first ones, it gives me hope that I too will improve. I am motivated to practice, practice practice. Tomorrow I plan to sketch my new, first, house! It’s very simple, not finished yet, but I think I will enjoy capturing it at this stage and will have that as a memory. cheers!

    • Dear Sunny–thank you so much for this lovely comment! And I can’t tell you how happy I am to hear that you were encouraged by how I picked up lessons along the way, rather than through formal instruction. I’ve really enjoyed that organic, practice-driven aspect of my journey as an artist, especially as I always hope it’s of encouragement to other artists, that the self-taught path is definitely an option. Also, I just have to ask–how did your sketching session of your first house go last weekend?! I was thinking of you often, and hope it was at least a little warmer than your last sketching session 🙂 <3

  • Kim

    I loved seeing how your perceptions of the scenes around you have deepened and evolved over time, and it’s amazing how much peace I sense in these gorgeous images. It’s as if the moments when you paused to fully observe and capture the moment in your travel sketches are now allowing us as appreciators to take a deep breath and be there with you too!

    • Kim, I can’t thank you enough for this kind and thoughtful comment–and I’m not sure I could have put any of that more perfectly than you did 🙂 Thank you! It truly does feel as though by growing as an artist, the way I perceive the world around me has also grown–it’s almost been a parallel journey of sorts. I’m also so glad that the peace I felt while working on many of these sketches made its way through the screen to you as you read the post 🙂 Thank you again as always for your words of support, Kim! <3

  • Bethany N. Bella

    Congratulations, dear Candace! I love this style of reflective-memoir writing. It really shows how far we’ve come, yes? Cheers to everything you’ve learned, and everything you will learn in the years to come! Follow your intuition, and keep being a relentlessly positive force in the world! -bnb

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, Bethany! Especially as I know we share a love for reflective writing 🙂 I’m so glad this post resonated with you, and as always, please know I’m cheering you on as you yourself continue to grow and evolve! <3

  • Pauline Susanto

    I love, love, love this Candace! I can see how you evolved as an artist from the very beginning until 2017. Reading through this makes me want to buy a sketchbook and watercolor pencils and bring them with me next time I go on a trip (i.e. next weekend!). Thanks for sharing as always 🙂 With much love from Toronto.

    • Thank you so much, my lovely friend! And I’m just thrilled that you’re feeling inspired to buy a sketchbook and watercolor pencils–it’s about time we made that happen, isn’t it? 🙂 Can’t wait to see where you’re headed on your next trip–have a wonderful time! <3

  • Jenny H

    hi Candace! i want to say that i really enjoyed reading this post and also to say ‘thank you so much!’ for sharing your experiences from the past 6 years. im so happy to hear that you’ve found your niche! im really grateful that i’ve found your illustrations online- actually, i don’t really remember how, possibly via Instagram and then i came your website. im currently going through some self-searching and this post couldn’t have come at a better time… you inspire with your story, your enthusiasm and your art-style! i have much to learn. i hope to join you at the next ‘moment catchers’! 🙂

    • Hi Jenny! Thank you so much for your comment and kind words here–it was wonderful to hear from you. I too am grateful that the internet somehow sent you my way, as it’s great to connect with you and hear a little bit about where you’re at in life 🙂 I find seasons of self-searching to be some of the richest, most revealing seasons of our lives (even if they’re also sometimes the most challenging…), so I’m honored to hear that this post might have resonated with your own internal journey right now. Thank you again, and I so hope you’ll join our next Moment Catchers challenge in March! <3

  • Victoria Hannah

    This is MAGIC AND A BOOK Candace!! Just love the history of your sketching career so far and I am sure it has given all your followers a huge incentive to keep going, no matter what their experience level is. It is so important to do ‘more of something you like’. The world would be such a happier, happier, happier environment if everyone did this. Thank you.

    • Victoria, I am as grateful as ever for your tremendous support and encouragement–it’s such wonderful motivation to keep at it, so thank you! I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this post, and I couldn’t agree more about the positive effect it would have on the world if everyone pursued what brings them joy and fulfillment. Wishing you a wonderful week ahead! <3

  • Naomi Bloom

    I’ve just retired and am trying to clear out the underbrush of a fifty year career even as I’m trying to begin sketching. I’m a traveler, have been as far back as I can remember even though those early journeys were more in my head than in reality, and I’ve been inspired by your work and that of Diana Gessler to try to illustrate my travels. This particular post says it all.

    • Hello, Naomi! Firstly, huge congratulations to you on your retirement–especially as that’s opening up room for you in life to begin sketching 🙂 Thank you as well for introducing me to the work of Diana Gessler…I hadn’t come across her before, but her style is wonderful! I so look forward to checking her artwork out more soon. Please let me know if I can help at all on your journey as a sketch artist, and I hope you might be able to join our next Moment Catchers sketching challenge in March as well 🙂

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