Sketching While Scuba Diving: Roatan 2012

August 2012: Sketching Under Water On my recent trip to Roatan, Honduras I decided to try sketching underwater - meaning sketching while scuba diving.

During my preparation for upcoming Alaska Adventure I learned about Rite-in-the-Rain papers - and ordered their large spiral bound sketchbook (by the way - great people - ready with recommendations and excited about their products!).

After trying out all my Alaska gear I realized that 8.5 x 11 is too large for my purposes (drawing in a kayak) and me and my e-xacto knife quickly made two books out of one :)

So my main secret is half of the Blank Polydura 8.5 x 11 Sketchbook from Rite-in-the-Rain.
Other equipment included pocket on my belt and pencils: I tried regular #2 as well as 4B carpenter's pencil.

I sketched on total of 6 dives and learned a lot!

  • First: drawing required better buoyancy control and awareness of environment. I got better but I need more :)
  • Spare pencil was very handy - I managed to break one - not sure how :)
  • I attached a string to my pencil - it's still underwater somewhere :( But pencil surfaced with me :)
  • Sketching fish and underwater life is FUN!!! 
  • You can get close to your subjects!
  • Many of them are like kids though - moving all the time ;)
  • Hence some pages were built gradually - adding bits and pieces or making one page out of several pieces of the reef.
  • Carpenter's pencil was good for drawing motion - but too fat for details or notes (see below).
  • It's good to have everything ready for the large subject (meaning turtle or eagle ray are not going to wait for you to get your sketchbook out. OK - may be turtle will :)
  • I added more and more notes as I continued my experiment but I should add even more - about depth, subjects, time etc.
  • I WANT COLOR!!! (so next time I am taking a couple of color pencils with me ;)

I think this is it :)

One of my scuba-buddies took a photo of my while working under water - I will add it here as soon as I have it ;)

This is first dive: carpenter's pencil.
 August 2012: Sketching Under Water

You can see that after I dried pages I taped them in my main sketchbook for this trip and added some comments with ballpoint pen.
 August 2012: Sketching Under Water 

Here you can see how pages are drying :)
August 2012: Sketching Under Water 

August 2012: Sketching Under Water

August 2012: Sketching Under Water

  August 2012: Sketching Under Water 

This was a wreck dive: This ship is a natural reef now. 

August 2012: Sketching Under Water