I watched a lot of cartoons and movies. I draw incessantly and carry a sketchbook everywhere. I work in animation and self-publish my books. There are monsters in the streets, don't wear red. Mad bulls and monsters hate that color. I still watch cartoons.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Lost Sketchbook

Had to happen sometime. At the last Sketchcrawl we went to the De Young Museum in Golden Gate Park, it was a real good choice. Good central location, target rich environment, free music (Jug Band that day), and the museum lunch counter was good.

The De Young Museum features a tower you can take an elevator to and enjoy a 360° view of the city. No museum fees, it's free! Wonderful! I broke out a new cahier moleskin for the occasion and started on a view towards the Golden Gate bridge. I was catching up to the group and my energies were flagging, but I managed to get one watercolor done. I took a snap of it and went down to get a bite to eat.

At the lunch area I had a thoroughly relaxed lunch and the view of the sculptures in the museum grounds was not bad either. Someone was waiting for a table and I offered mine as I was going anyway. I left and even glanced back as the bus staff swooped in to clear the table.

It would be a full hour or so before I find that the sketchbook is missing. I rush back inside and ask the staff if they noticed a little brown sketchbook. No luck. I ask lost and found and still zip. I retraced my steps all the rest of the afternoon and, needless to say, any remaining enthusiasm for drawing I may have had on reserve left me. I hung around till the end of the crawl to see everyone's work as this is my favorite part of a sketchcrawl day.

above image links to larger view. Sigh.

Everyone was shocked about my news and even offered me their spare sketchbooks. Thanks, people. Typical for me to be carrying four or five at any one time and apparently it goes for everyone at the crawl.

Let that be a lesson to you, kids. Always do a thorough check of your valuables before you leave a table. This one sketchbook had the one sketch in it, thankfully. Otherwise I would be an emotional wreck. I console myself that at least I got a picture of the work -- practicing that "half-full" point of view--and that it wasn't the book that held my Europe trip in it. That one was full...and safely inside my bag.

De Young Museum
Golden Gate Park

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Blogger -U! a.k.a. Uriel A. Duran said...

It's a shame you lost your sketchbook.
Then again,on a brighter side,probably the person who found it put it to good use --it even could be the first step for a future artist.
After all,there's already a nice sketch in it to provide inspiration.

8:34 PM

Blogger Lee-Roy said...

:( Oh, man. I can relate. Once when I was a teenager, I lost an almost full sketchbook that was very important to me. Left it on a Muni train and never saw it again. Still getting over it (I'm in my 30's). Both of our sketchbooks are floating in some sort of no man's land in a parallel dimension of San Francisco.

11:45 PM

Blogger Marcelo Braga said...

Sorry to hear that, man. Sad news, however it's time to start a new one, right? EVEN BETTER!

Good Luck!

9:51 AM

Blogger benton jew said...

I once lost a sketchbook when I lived in the Bay Area. I was with a friend at about 16th and Mission in San Francisco and while we were out, someone broke into her trunk. She lost a leather jacket, and I lost my briefcase that contained a few old comics I had just bought, a small cheap camera ( as well as some other replacable junk ) and my sketchbook. I was less concerned about the other stuff, but the sketchbook was irreplacable. We put flyers up in the neighborhood and went to some of the local used bookstores to see if anyone had tried to sell them any of the rare comics I bought. One of the people did remember someone trying to sell one of the books and gave a vague description. A week or so later someone called and said they had my sketchbook, but insisted on a money reward. I met him near where the sketchbook was stolen and paid the guy. He matched the description of the guy trying to sell my comics, and I'm sure he was the person who stole them in the first place, but it really didn't matter as I did get my sketchbook back.

So, you might try putting up a some flyers and poking around. You never know...

good luck...

1:53 PM

Blogger Radish said...

It always bothers me when I lose something like that. Ever since losing my thumb ring, I always look back at where I was sitting to see if I left anything. (this also goes with my friends belongings...) My mom got that habit in me! She rarely loses anything now!

6:26 PM

Blogger A-T-G said...


I hate it when that happens! But, like you said.."on the bright side" you didn't lose a FULL book"

...but, OH! That lost potential...who knows what treasures that book might have held...

7:29 PM

Blogger Jamie Baker said...

When I was travelling in Peru, I had a bag stolen from my hotel room (as I was sleeping). It contained my camera and several rolls of exposed film and also a big skethcbook/journal that had lots of notes and drawings from a few years worth of travel in Asia and the Americas, including the names and addresses of lots of people I had met along the way.

I am sure the thief was happy to get my camera but my guess is that they would have thrown the book away... even though that was the most valuable thing in the bag, for me.

10:55 PM

Blogger Nancy said...

Oh, my gosh, Ronnie - if you had lost your European sketchbook, we ALL would be an emotional wreck!
I hope you keep calling the museum's lost & found, because, I would think that museum patrons would be the type to turn something like that in ... maybe it just hadn't made it's way to the official Lost & Found yet.
I hope you'll be brave enough to bring your European sketchbook along to the next Sketchcrawl; I'd love to see it.

11:42 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's really got to suck!

While I can't say I've lost any sketchbooks (Although, I have almost lost my laptop cord more than once and I guess you can sorta consider it my digital sketchbook...), I can say that I've definately found quite a few of them over the past few years. But if I ever see any of yours (Who knows.... it might happen) I'll be nice with it.

10:06 AM

Blogger Drazen said...

I remember reading when Norman Rockwell
lost his whole European sketchbook , a 30 by 30 incher all filled up towards the end of his trip.
Lukily you only lost 1 drawing;-)

12:34 PM

Blogger Gerald Guerlais said...

It's a sad story, I really compassionate. Loosing a Sketchbook could drive me crazy...especially one you share. I wish nothing will ever stop your art expression.

1:44 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My purse got stolen out of my car this Friday. Inside was my sketchbook and my journal.. both of which I work in everyday. I understand your pain as I have not been able to stop crying for the past 2 days.

4:44 PM


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