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writing secrets and Sponsor: Amy Bogard (and giveaway)

2013 April 8
by Rachel Turiel

amy b4Sketch by Amy Bogard

When I tell my writing students that there are 2 major components to writing well, they wait expectantly for me to part the Red Sea of Writing so they can sashay in before it closes. I smile and tell them the 2 most important things I know about writing:

Read a lot and write a lot.

Then we spend the next 8 weeks talking about metaphor and opening lines, about the importance of a likeable narrator, about showing not telling, about omitting needless words and listening like a writer. But if you’re not reading and writing a lot, the rest is just theory.

But really, this news is exciting, because anyone can read and write a lot. And this translates to whatever discipline you seek (art, cooking, gardening, not yelling at your kids, forgiving your parents): practice a lot, be willing to stumble, get up and practice some more.

New 6512 and growing sponsor, Amy Bogard, is an artist and art teacher, who has decided to make one small sketch everyday for a year. She too knows that practicing your craft daily is key to improving. But that’s not all. She says, through the act of drawing, we learn to slow down and really see what we are experiencing. This is exactly how I feel about writing, because most of us will earn approximately $.000374/hr writing, but slowing down to really see what we’re experiencing? Priceless.

amy bogard

This is practice; practice is everything. Follow Amy’s sketch-a-day on her Facebook Page

Amy Bogard is offering you 2 things today. (the first is an invitation, the second a giveaway)

First, a spot in her June 2013 Taos, New Mexico 3rd annual sketching and journaling workshop.

In Amy Bogard’s words:

A few things happen in this workshop. With just a few days’ practice, you begin to fill up a blank book with images YOU have made. Many of us have picked up a lovely handmade journal only to tuck it in a drawer, almost afraid of it.  I know I used to! With practice, I’ve learned that with each drawing, I create a time capsule of my days walking this world.

am bogard3

By Amy Bogard

We live in a very frenetic world. I have found that drawing in a sketchbook is the key to this escape, even in my own day to day. The Taos trip is a shot in the arm to get this process started.  Taos, NM is full of interesting and beautiful things to capture the imagination and the spirit for the experienced artist, as well for those new-to-drawing.  With the simple tool set of a small watercolor set, a pencil and pen and a book with some nice paper in it, you can open the door to this process for yourself .

amy bogard2
By Amy Bogard
Second (the giveaway), a mini paint set to get started. And I am throwing in my favorite pocket notebook, essential for thinking like a writer and recording the extraordinary ordinary details of your life.
Outside:
amy b
Inside:
amy b3
amy b6
Paint set made by Amy Bogard. Make you own mini paint set tutorial here.
How fun would it be to have a mini paint-set to whip out, ninja-style, at the park, in your yard, on the airplane, capturing a moment of this lovely, lucky life.
Leave a comment to be entered for the paint set/notebook creativity explosion. Giveaway closes Friday, April 12.
Amy’s blog
Amy’s Facebook page (where she posts her one sketch a day)

Related posts:

Sponsor giveaway: Planting the Seeds *fun*shop
find something you're passionate about (giveaway)
what we're doing this summer


34 Responses leave one →
  1. April 8, 2013

    I’d love a little set like that.

  2. Nancy permalink
    April 8, 2013

    I want to hold that little paint set in my hand! cute/artsy attack!

  3. Sara permalink
    April 8, 2013

    I have gotten into an almost groove of writing a little every day. There are definitely days (and clumps of days) where I get off track, but I’ve been writing more and more consistently in the past eight months than I have probably in the eight years (or 18) that preceded it. I’m reading a lot too, though I find it hard to read a lot and read closely.

    My kids would be begging for Altoids with that paint set, though I bet they wouldn’t mind sitting down to paint with me once they saw what it was.

  4. April 8, 2013

    That workshop sounds like a dream! Seeing all of Amy’s lovely paintings in this post is inspiring!
    I have been water coloring a lot more lately, since all of our acrylic paints frozen on the move out here, and I have been loving it. A little set like that would be perfect to take along on our hikes!
    Thanks for the chance!

  5. jonni permalink
    April 8, 2013

    What a cool idea. I would love to win this, but I would make one as well. What a great idea for the grandkids that love to paint us pretty pictures..

  6. Shawna R permalink
    April 8, 2013

    I might be more motivated to journal with a cute little set like that! :)

  7. lau permalink
    April 8, 2013

    I would love to give this little set to my fiance who is just finding his way back to his art again after an injury.

  8. Melissa permalink
    April 8, 2013

    omg, taos, nm, writing/drawing workshop? yes, please!
    thanks for all the encouragement. it’s true about practice. one of our great yoga gurus always said, “do your practice, and all is coming.” it’s so true!!! xo

  9. Garlic Goddess with Tomatoes permalink
    April 8, 2013

    Would be thrilled to go to Taos! Her sketches are beautiful.

  10. April 8, 2013

    I set out this year to do the occasional watercolor sketch of the day to day during various seasons, and did make three that capture something of the moment they were made–dolls left out on the patio where apples were falling from the tree, three blue chairs in a grove of golden cottonwood trees, and pumpkins sitting on my desk. I’m going to check out her workshop now and see if maybe that is a getaway waiting to happen.

  11. steph permalink
    April 8, 2013

    My soon-to-be ex-husband would love this…and, since we’re trying to be amicable, it would be a great peace offering.

  12. Kathy permalink
    April 8, 2013

    I do love that paint box!

  13. brenda permalink
    April 8, 2013

    I love, love the idea of an art/writing journal. I have several that I have collected over the years, and like you am almost afraid to even use them….they are so beautiful! I would love to know how to paint and draw, I have three grown adults kids who graduated with Art degrees, but alas….I don’t know how to paint OR draw! :) But, I do love the paint set you made and I love to write (even though I don’t do it nearly enough!). Taos is a beautiful place to go to be creative. Have fun!!!

  14. Lindsay permalink
    April 8, 2013

    Ingenius!

  15. Megan permalink
    April 8, 2013

    slowly started to take up drawing/sketching… scary world! these are beautiful, and i am always looking for ways to improve my writing. thanks for sharing. :)

  16. Julie Sulfsted permalink
    April 8, 2013

    Your mini paint set is awsome. My little sketchbook is screaming for something a bit more adventuresome than pencil.

  17. Amanda Huddleston permalink
    April 9, 2013

    Lovely idea. My 16 year old daughter could use this idea to practice her skills.

  18. April 9, 2013

    Wow! What lovely comments! Thanks to all of you! It’s been great to sponsor such amazing writing. I just love the community Rachel has created here on 6512 and Growing and I look forward to more of the same!! Hope to see you in Taos!! :)

  19. Bree permalink
    April 9, 2013

    what a treasure — thanks for the giveaway opportunity

  20. April 9, 2013

    Read. Write. Read. Write….it’s my mantra (or at least it should be). How fun to spend a week in Taos! Are you going? Something to save up for…in the meantime, I love the mini paint set. I have an Altoids tin just waiting for me to get around to making one of the same.

  21. April 9, 2013

    how lovely! I am following her on facebook now!

  22. April 9, 2013

    i admire the discipline that both of you have, in practicing your craft daily. such beautiful images!!! what a cute, fun giveaway. i am going to check out the tutorial. i already keep my watercolors in an altoid tin, but they are still in their tubes- maybe that one more step needed to obtain access is holding me back. :)

  23. Amy Morrison permalink
    April 9, 2013

    Love her beautiful artwork!

  24. April 10, 2013

    I love this idea! I am always working with the children in our program on creative journalism and I think that it is one of the best ways to get the children connected with what they are doing artistically as well as verbally. We have many children that do not care to write lengthy entries or just do not feel confident in their writing skills so I always encourage creativity whether they use a camera to document their findings and interests, drawings or gather leaves etc. to tape into their journals. This is great :) Thanks for sharing.

  25. July 15, 2013

    Superb site you have here but I was curious if you knew of any discussion boards that cover the same
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