Train Sketches

I’ve been drawing on the train and as I wait for the train. I pic something that I want to focus on, hats, noses, eyes, puffy jackets, or interesting shoes. (I actually picked the car I was going to ride on today based on the number of neat hats people were wearing vs those who weren’t wearing hats on the other cars. Seriously.


Generally I don’t get any attention for my activities. I'm discreet (usually) about who I’m drawing, I try to pick people who are engrossed in their phone, book, or newspaper. I try not to stare but to look for a few moments gather some info, then look at my page, then look again gather info, and draw. Eventually I stop looking and keep working on the drawing. My goal is to get as much info on the page in a minute or two.


Most people don’t notice me. I usually wear headphones and blend in with everyone else. Over the last 2 weeks I’ve gotten more attention for my sketching habit than usual. Last week a fellow grad student (from UMass Lowell) saw me sketching as we waited for our trains. He watched me over my shoulder and we had a pleasant conversation. Another person was a little pushy and rude, wanting me to draw him and then give him the drawing. While I could tear the page out of my notebook/journal it would mess up the binding and I was a little put off that he expected that I’d want/be excited to draw him and then give him the drawing for free. Hell, he could have offered to buy me a coffee.


Today a woman, about my age, saw me drawing and came up to me and asked if she could take a picture of my sketchbook. She explained that she takes a picture of one interesting thing a day that she sees on the T. I let her take the picture and we talked about her project. She does it just for her. the images collect on her computer. She doesn’t share them. But she says she always finds at least one interesting thing on the train every ride. Truly a neat project. (we could talk about the importance of keeping a journal of some sort even if you never share a page with another person, but I think that’s a WHOLE other blog post. {and yes I consider what she does a “photo” journal.})

So far I’ve only ever had positive interactions with people about my drawings. I await a day when someone tells me to stop, while I hope that never happens I know it could. FB_IMG_13934590070185483

All images are from my 3.5×5.5 in BanditApple Carnet notebook/sketchbook. It is housed in a flauxdori or Midori traveler's Style Notebook cover. I've written about it before (did a video too, but I'm too lazy/tired to link it up.) Anyway, no affiliation, but I thought it would be useful to give you the size of the page. Also the pens I used on these pages were a Parker Flow refill and a Pilot Metropolitan Fountain pen with pilot ink. I've got reviews in the works for both the inks and the pen. Lots of reviews coming  up.