sketchbook cover

Where would a traveling sketchbook go?

Would it go to school, to the beach, the mountains, the artist’s studio, to other countries and continents? To answer that question “The Traveling Sketchbook Project-2009” was born. James Rees presented his Sketchbook Project for the state of Utah at NAEA and Sally Paul and donna banning were so intrigued by his experience, they decided to present it for California at the State CAEA Conference in Los Angeles in 2009. The conference theme “All Roads Lead to Art” fit the project perfectly.  They wanted representation from all three CAEA Areas: Northern (Sally) and Southern (donna), so they invited anyone in the Central Area interested in joining to contact them. Laura Corbin did just that and her experience with her own sketchbook project was welcomed. Robert Dvorak, writer-artist-teacher provided quotes. Heather Soodak, CSULB art education graduate, designed the cover,and  Sally Paul established the blogspot. They numbered each of the 50 sketchbooks that Dick Blick had donated to the project, and at the workshop, they signed them out! Now they are on their way all over California and beyond.

Where have they been?

Sketchbook #1 has been in Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand, and and as of 2010, was in China. Sketchbook #3 has been in Montaro, #7 in Dillon Beach, Petaluma, and Vacaville, and #16 was in Yucca Valley.   The response was overwhelming and all 50 sketchbooks that were checked out at the workshop are well on their way all over California and beyond. Each year since, new ones have started similar journeys.

If you have a sketchbook...

Please upload your sketches to, note where the book has been, and pass it on to someone else. We want to start a map with all of the sketchbook sites on it, so tell us where you live. The books are brought back and shared at conferences.  In Riverside, bring them to the Round Table session.  Or send it to the address in the books or contact Sally Paul or donna banning for return information.

I want to join this project!

New sketchbooks will be available in Riverside at the Round Table sessions. Consider starting your own sketchbook project in your school or community to promote arts education and art making!

Here are a few entries from the blog spot: left, Jane La Fazio, Terrilyn Quick, and Lori Stevenson.

Jane La Fazio    Terrilyn Quick    Lori Stevenson

Each sketchbook belongs to The Traveling Sketchbook project. All content is voluntarily contributed to the project and becomes the sole property of the traveling sketchbook project. Thanks for being part of this journey! Keep in touch and send us updates of the images you encounter! Email Sally Paul

Sketchbook and Journal ideas and techniques--teaching tools

To help your students with some ideas and techniques on sketchbooks, view the PowerPoint presentation that Laura Corbin created for her students. The PowerPoint is in two parts. It may take a few minutes to download.

Download Part I of Art Journal Ideas and Techniques by Laura Corbin
Download Part 2 of Art Journal Ideas and Techniques by Laura Corbin

Another resource is a lesson on Process Journals that Washington Art Education Association member and Past Vice President of NAEA, Pacific Region,  Deb Barten, uses with her students.  Even if you don't do a traveling sketchbook, these are great tools to help your students explore new ideas and techniques and self-expression in creating imaginative and very personal sketchbooks.

Process Journals Lesson It is in a word doc so you can customize it for your own use in the classroom.