Are You Sure You Don’t Have Time?

If you hang out in sketching circles, it’s very common to hear “I just haven’t had the time to draw.”  I can never understand that, and dedicated sketchers will know what I mean when I say, “do you really think I buy that excuse?  I don’t.”  Now if you really don’t want to sketch, then don’t do it.  But don’t kid yourself into thinking you don’t have time.  There is nothing easier to fit into a hectic schedule than sketching.

How can I be so sure?  Well, everyone has 24 hours in a day.  We all need to eat, sleep and to varying degrees, work.  I know that some work a lot.  Ok, that means you have less time than I do but ‘no time’?  There’s not one ‘couple minutes’ in your day when you could sketch?

Let me give you a couple examples of finding sketching time even when no time is set aside for sketching.  I’ll start with my baseball passion.  From April until October I burn up a couple hours a night watching the Blue Jays beat opposing teams.  It’s a sickness, but I’ve got to do it.  Others might watch hockey, football, cooking shows, or the latest dramatic series.  People watch movies too.  Here are the last couple pages from the sketchbook that I use when I do watch TV.


Some faces on TV


Some play with a ballpoint pen


quick details from memory


just some scribbles while watching baseball






Our lives are always  what military guys refer to as ‘hurry up and wait.’  We rush to appointments and then sit around waiting for them to begin.  I was in that situation just yesterday.  I had to sign papers at my bank but I arrived at the bank 15 minutes before they opened.  So, I walked down the street and popped into a small place and ordered a cup of coffee.  While drinking coffee I drew these and got back to the bank by opening time.  Are you sure you don’t have time to draw?

Quick sketches while waiting for bank to open

Quick sketches while waiting for bank to open


2 thoughts on “Are You Sure You Don’t Have Time?

  1. Like you, I’m one of those sketchers who can always find time to sketch, and I think the trick to that is having very low standards about what qualifies as a “sketch” (and it’s definitely not a “drawing”! 😉 ). I don’t mean that as a dig at your sketches here; I just mean that if you expect every sketch to be a fully rendered and colored depiction of a landscape or portrait or scene, you really might not have time. But a scribble of my coffee mug or hand or pen on my desk? I’ve got tons of those, just like you do, and they still “count” in the greater sketching universe. Keep on sketchin’, Larry! And the rest of you: stop making excuses and get out your sketchbook! 😉

    – Tina

    • I agree completely, Tina, and the pages I posted are an indication of exactly what you’re talking about. If nothing else such drawings serve as practice – practice that everyone needs. More importantly, however, they’re fun. — Larry

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