Very excited to take a peek at today’s Fuji x100t photos. I haven’t had a chance for a good old fashioned photo walk in a LONG time. Probably about 6 months which is just a bit older than my daughter…I’m sure there’s no connection.

A Year of Sermon Sketchnotes

Last year I selected a Field notes dime novel for my sermon sketchnoting book for the year. I had used other field notes notebooks before as I found the pocket size to be good for sermons (especially as it fits inside my pocket leather NIV Bible). The Dime Novel provided a slightly larger size (meaning it didn’t fit in my bible anymore) and a different type of paper.

The texture of the paper (“Natural White” Strathmore Premium 70# according to the field notes website) is a little rougher than most I’ve used. It does mean that there’s very little bleed from most pens I used and it is a little slower to write on.

Over the course of the year I used a variety of pens including

  • Pigma micron 0.3 and 0.8 (dual wielding)
  • Faber Castell drawing kit (including a brush pen)
  • some random red felt pens

I have one more dime novel that I’m using for this year’s sermon sketchnotes too. I don’t know what I’ll move to after that one is finished, I guess that’s the downside of limited editions.

Calligraphy And Mindfulness

About three years ago I started getting interested in calligraphy. It was born out of my desire to improve my teaching board work so that students could read my writing more clearly…and because of the repeated mention of lettering from the sketchnote army podcast. My initial explorations were very rough and disparate with no clear practice or routines. Unsurprisingly, I made little or no progress. But a year and half ago I finial went along to a calligraphy lesson. This was very different.

  • It was planned
  • The activities were repetitive
  • There was a style to emulate

At that time I was struggling with what St. John of the cross called “the dark night of the soul”. My mind was a mess of thoughts, considerations and darkness. Things felt bleak and thinking didn’t help.

Calligraphy got me into a state of flow that helped clear my mind. It didn’t have an immediate effect and I need some good conversations, a resetting of good routines and some time to process thoughts slowly but I emerged the other side.

This Wednesday I went to a calligraphy class again. It wasn’t to escape the pit, but to elevate up to flow again. I chose a different style (copperplate) using equipment and techniques I was unfamiliar with to increase the challenge.

I hope to continue these classes as this mindfulness practice does my soul a world of good…and it’s just cool to write well.

20 Life Lessons from Leonardo da Vinci | The Saturday Evening Post 🔗

20 Life Lessons from Leonardo da Vinci | The Saturday Evening Post 🔗

The fact that Leonardo was not only a genius but also very human — quirky and obsessive and playful and easily distracted — makes him more accessible. He was not graced with the type of brilliance that is completely unfathomable to us. Instead, he was self-taught and willed his way to his genius. So even though we may never be able to match his talents, we can learn from him and try to be more like him. His life offers a wealth of lessons.

This is actually the second to last part of the Isaacson biography and well worth a read on it’s own. The whole book is fantastic, but this section might inspire you and help you to be a bit more curious.

A lot of my internet friends seem to really be struggling at the moment and the issues and the root causes seem similar. - they feel overwhelmed - they feel like they aren’t doing enough - they feel lost and direction less - they feel guilty for not doing more - they feel everyone else is doing much better than they are - they feel they need to be consistent in their output (or they will fail) - they feel they are imposters and shouldn’t be doing what they are - they feel everyone is negative these days - they feel they are hearing the same things again and again - they feel hurt by critiques they have received (recently or in the past)

I wish there was an easy answer but I can tell you that you’re not alone, others feel these things too and it does get better.

(and I’d like to suggest that productivity books/podcasts often make those feelings worse.)


noun [si-nek-duh-kee] Rhetoric.

a figure of speech in which a part is used for the whole or the whole for a part, the special for the general or the general for the special, as in ten sail for ten ships or a Croesus for a rich man.

Similar to a Metonymy.

A Pièce De Résistance Is Never Easy

As I concluded the Isaacson biography of Da Vinci he referred to the Mona Lisa as “Da Vinci’s pièce de résistance”. A term many are familiar with, but one I had never considered. The words are literally a piece of resistance.

This term – synonymous with the greatest work created by a group or the highlight of someone’s work – highlights the struggle that is present in creating.

Great work requires struggle and perseverance.

This sees very present in Da Vinci’s work. He left so much unfinished, yet Mona Lisa is one of his few finished products.

If Da Vinci hadn’t persevered, he wouldn’t have created his pièce de résistance.

P.s. If a french speaker would like to correct my translation, I appreciate that but I think the point is still valid.