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Book Review: The Bumbling Traveller is a great read with 250 sketches that capture the mood of destinations

“Travel sketching is one of the best ways to understand a destination, its architecture, and culture,” asserts architect Tom Schmidt, author of the new book The Bumbling Traveller. “In today’s digital era, many tourists quickly simply snap a photo, post it to social media, and move on to their next destination.”

The Bumbling Traveller Series
The Bumbling Traveller Book Series

Tourism is the lifeblood of many global communities, and as the fight against the global pandemic continues, it is hoped that travellers can once again explore the world around them, with perhaps a new set of eyes and a sense of appreciation.

Explaining his book Tom Schmidt says, “The Bumbling Traveller – Sketching the World is a collection of my in-situ travel sketches and environmental analyses over the past thirty years from my old yellowing sketchbooks. There are over 250 color and black and white sketches ranging from on-site sketches of buildings and monuments to doodles that were executed while backpacking.”

Architect Tom Schmidt, author of the new book The Bumbling Traveller
Architect Tom Schmidt, author of the new book The Bumbling Traveller

Certainly, The Bumbling Traveller is filled with over three decades of Schmidt’s highly detailed architectural sketches and analyses of various destinations around the world.

From subjects of architecture and the built environment to local people and handicrafts, readers will experience the age-old tradition of putting pen to paper to remember the world around them, capture moments in time, tell stories, and daydream.

With over 250 hand-drawn illustrations in a variety of media, readers will see the genesis of the award-winning Bumbling Traveller™ Adventure Series. Schmidt hopes that the book will inspire younger generations of travellers, artists, and architecture students to sketch the world around them, and better appreciate the place they are visiting.

The Bumbling Traveller
The Bumbling Traveller

Explains Schmidt, “ I’ve organized the content into chapters beginning with the travel experience, and how one might consider travelling and sketching while they travel. The book then delves into subjects of architecture and environments – the spaces between buildings. The next chapter contains images from what I call ‘mysterious places’ – basically, all the mythical places I had wanted to visit since I was a kid … the Pyramids, Machu Picchu, and Easter Island, among others. “

Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book
Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book

This is followed by sections on ‘visual notes’ and storytelling, which show how sketches can be used to remember how things are constructed and help convey sequences of events. The last two chapters are more fun and revolve around sketches of people and daydream-inspired doodles.

Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book
Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book

The Bumbling Traveller is the fourth installment in the award-winning Bumbling Traveller™ Adventure Series, a book series that seeks to promote environmental and cultural awareness through entertaining mysteries and adventures. The Bumbling Traveller will be launched on 27 September 2021 in Hong Kong in commemoration of World Tourism Day; the book will be available in regional and international bookstores beginning in September 2021, and can also be ordered from the publisher, Kakibubu Media Limited .

Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book
Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Tom Schmidt is an award-winning architect, writer, illustrator, musician, and part-time stand-up comedian. Born in the United States, following his studies of Architecture and Environmental Design at the University of Colorado, his wanderlust has carried him through various bumbling adventures in over 70 countries around the world, across all seven continents.

Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book
Sketches in The Bumbling Traveller book

Schmidt is a licensed architect in the US and New Zealand, an Accredited Professional in the LEED® and WELL building certification programs, a founding member of the Hong Kong Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and a member of the American Society of Architectural Illustrators (ASAI).

He has resided in Hong Kong since 1997 and is the founder of Sepia Design Consultants Limited an architectural consultancy specializing in sustainable hospitality design.

Read More: Explore the World

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