Summer Camp Lunchtime Doodles August/September 2015: Drawing Pictures in Padova…

You know what I doodly-do when I do English-language summer camps in Italy every summer? Well, one of the things I do – aside from singing, dancing and struggling to control Havoc Beelzebambini while I teach them essential vocab like ‘tape’, ‘shame’ and ‘toilet plunger’ – is draw diary sketches during the lunchbreaks. Sì, signore e signori! Its time for another round of lunchtime doodles from summer camp! *fanfare*

As it was in Torino in June, so it was again in the countryside near Padova in late August/early September. Technical background and insight into ze process for those interested: this time I had to use standard paper rather than canteen placemats because there was no canteen arrangement at this school. Doodles were therefore done in the public park next door and were powered by packed lunch (mostly tuna sandwiches). Furthermore, I was determined that I’d make these daily diary doodles the most Jamazing yet and I sought to raise my game from ‘Yeah! Alrighty!‘ to ‘Oh Gods! Thor Almighty!‘. More sketches! Better sketches! More imagination and in-jokes and off-the-wall absurdity and semi-topical creative lunacy!

I think I did a decent job of that and rate these as my best batch of lunchtime doodles so far (until next year, if I make it that far and if they have me back). I won’t go into detail or try and explain ’em – just appreciate them for what they are. Then again, if you wish you can always try and dive deep into esoteric theory and try and discover the occult symbolism and the secrets of my subconscious manifest in miniaturised ink dribbling.

Here are the fortnight’s daily doodles from Summer Camp No. 2 collected together for convenience (you can also see them and my other arty bits on Instagram y’know). And stick around after the two weeks are done with – I promise that there are bonus extras…

DAY ONE (contains Jamezilla and a sock full of tuna)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 1…

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DAY TWO (contains a swordfish fight and the much-feared Seat of Doom)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 2…

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DAY THREE (contains Magic Trousers and the return of Pineapple Hands)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 3…

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DAY FOUR (contains Opera Pizza and Robot-Octopus)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 4…

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DAY FIVE (contains bereft Batman and existential party monkeys)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 5…

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DAY SIX (contains egg drama and cheesy romance)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 6…

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DAY SEVEN (contains Pizza Compass and impossible things to find during the Treasure Hunt)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 7…

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DAY EIGHT (contains Spider-Merman and emotional sea urchins)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 8…

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DAY NINE (contains humourless prawns and Robo-Mosquito)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 9…

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DAY TEN (grand finale round-up contains ambivalent owl waving arrivederci, a magical unicorn, Pineapple Hands and a promise that Jamezilla will return and that summer camp never really ends…)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy (Padova): Day 10…

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But wait, there’s more! I have bonus extras and I’m giving them away for free. During the weekend I took a trip to Venice and, after a long, long day exploring the celebrated canal city, ended up in an enoteca for a late night meal with wonderful people (I miss these people). They had paper placemats in this restaurant so, of course, I decided to doodle on them to both express a few of my thoughts about Venezia and distract myself from the scary meat-feast that had landed on the table…

Bonus Dinnertime Doodles from Italy: Weekend Day Trip to Venezia (Venice)…

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And that’s not all, amici! I love making my own didactic materials for summer camp and I tend to get carried away (Read: decide to start drawing up and colouring example alien anatomy posters at 11.30pm and then I never use them ’cause the following day’s lesson plan is already too full and the kids just want to play another game of Bomb-Catch-Freeze, ma dai.) For instance, here are sample miniature doodles of representative foods from around the globe for my students to copy and adapt into big posters for display (also pictured)…

Food Around the World: more summer camp materials, these to inspire posters…

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Ecco! My class made brilliant 'Food Around the World' posters...

Ecco! My class made brilliant ‘Food Around the World’ posters…

… and finally, for the Treasure Hunt at this camp I sketched up fresh precious items (each worth 10 points!) and bonus Marvel superheroes (worth 20 points!) for the children to search for. No one found Daredevil which means that there’s some weaponised Catholic guilt running loose in the Veneto countryside. Erm, regardless, I think everyone had fun…

Marvel Superheroes and Rare Treasures: making summer camp materials for a treasure hunt…

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And that’s it for summer camp doodles for another year and that also draws another set of Italian summer adventures to a close. I hope you enjoyed following ’em and I hope that I continue to get opportunities to draw with and for children because it’s just so much fun and so rewarding. (I’m getting déjà vu. I’m pretty sure I said exactly the same thing in July.) What have I learned? Drawing is fun and you get better at it by doodling more. It makes you happy, sometimes (a lot of the time) it makes other people happy and it’s great for teaching (especially teaching a foreign language).

Ah, I miss Italy and the summer camp experience, but I’ll keep on doodling whenever the moment arises and then the spirit and energy keeps on going. Carpe diem, seize the pen…

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