Lines and Colors art blog

Don Kenn

Don Kenn
Don Kenn (whose blog also confusingly lists him as John Kenn) is a Danish writer and director of childrens’ television shows. In his limited spare time he draws “Monsterdrawings” on Post-It notes; as he describes them “…a little window into a different world, made on office supplies”.

The drawings, of ghouls and ghosts, sea monsters and living islands, haunted woods and city streets, combine the imaginative ramblings of doodles with a technique of hatching tones and range of atmosphere and effect reminiscent of Edward Gorey.

Kenn often juxtaposes passages of dense hatching with areas of open space, to excellent effect.

I understand the fun of using unusual art supplies like Post-It notes, and I certainly understand the appeal of off-white drawing surfaces, because I prefer them myself; but I think Kenn’s Monsterdrawings are too good to be wasted on non-archival materials.

I would love to suggest the nicely off-white Strathmore Series #400 sketchpads and the Sakura Pigma Micron markers I described in my post on My Pocket Rembrandt.

At the very least, somebody give the man a Moleskine.

[Via Sandbox World]


24 responses to “Don Kenn”

  1. No kidding! These are too good to let crumble away. I love the drawing of the boy with the guitar and ghouls in his wake.

    I’ve been raving about Strathmore 400 and sepia microns lately myself:

    Thanks again for turning me on to the sepia colored pens.

  2. Those are amazing. Kinda reminds me of this artist who made these really weird children’s drawings…though his name escapes me. But thanks for sharing these!

    By the way, for anybody who is wanting to go to Art Basel this year, I found these great deals at this site called

  3. so buy ’em for him… the usual idea with drawing on post-it is that they’re free and ubiquitous…

  4. Very nice. I never draw on post-it. Maybe I should try 🙂

  5. Astonishing what he can do on a post-it note–though yes, I agree, I hope he’ll be willing to move on to more durable materials. We want these to last!

  6. Or – Archival quality ATCs.

  7. Hello,
    very good the post as usually.
    I suggest to see
    which author is an excellent illustrator too.
    Good morning!

  8. People are much too fixated with permanence. Let the guy create on whatever inspires him. Enjoy looking at it, if it crumbles away so be it. In this day of total internet coverage it’s not like the images will be completely lost anyway.

    He is incredible though. I instantly loved every one of these in the same way I love the work of Tom Gauld.

  9. One thing I’ve learned is that it is not that much harder to work with good materials. I would hate to think things that might have been lost of they were done on poor materials. All of those Durer or Rembrandt etchings and engravings on paper bags or their equivalent. If you can why not unless it is conceptually relevant.

  10. By the way I have loved this guys stuff for awhile now. Just great.

  11. One upside to this choice of materials: he doesn’t need a very large portfolio…

  12. These images remind me of stuff straight out of a Hayao Miyazaki movie. The ghostly creatures are like “No Face” in Spirited Away ( and the tall creatures with long legs are also similar to creatures I’ve seen in his movies. It’s a great style.

  13. These are so cute! Children would love this. Im an art buff myself. In fact I want to Learn Face Painting . Its not only an enjoyably hoppy, its also a great way to earn.

  14. Love the concept of these illustration!

  15. Miss Blue Avatar

    Does anyone know if he sells these post-its? I would love to have a few on my walls….in little frames of course, not just stuck there with deteriorating glue ^_^

  16. where could I buy this wonderfu illustration book? T.T

    is “POST-IT-MONSTERS ” published or saled on anywhere so far??

  17. I draw on anything. I’m rather addicted to the coupon packs I get for free in the mail. They’re plain paper and blank on one side, about 40 to a pack once a month – and, I’m recycling unsolicited advertisng mail. Drat!
    They’ve just started covering both sides and no longer on plain paper. Nothing stays the same. I used them for experimenting with techniques I wanted to try unlike Don Kenn’s fine work. If I drew like Don, I’d use better.

    1. Cheap paper can be nice because its throwaway nature encourages you to experiment (one of the reasons I like cheap newsprint pads), but it’s also nice to switch to nicer paper sometimes, even if just for the very different feel of it. For fine line like Kenn is doing, bulk packages of computer printer paper can be cheap, and have a nice surface for fine line markers like Pigma Microns.

  18. Stefbot Avatar

    For some, the perfect blank page of a sketchbook brings pressure and expectations which can squelch the muse. Maybe if we could trick ourselves into thinking that the post-it note or scrap of grocery bag is way more valuable than that lousy old moleskin then things might reverse…? Something to think about.

  19. Extraordinary!
    I am acspecial ed teacher and my kids would LOVE these!

  20. wait. Is each drawing completed on one post-it note? At first I thought it was a lot of them combined, like the light colors in the drawings where the post it notes and the dark was filled in with pencil. Which is it??

    1. My understanding is that these are in ink on single Post-It notes, but some of his more recent work — the ones on whiter backgrounds — are often in ink and pencil on regular drawing paper.

  21. The style is very reminiscent of Maurice Sendak, for me.