Sarah Darby is known across the globe for capturing special moments in a sketch and has launched her biggest project to date, a book titled This is Not a Planner‘.

A year in the making, ‘This is Not a Planner allows the opportunity to plan, jot down notes, and provides prompts to capture your moods and adventures in the week. Sometimes looking forward and sometimes looking back. Each page will ask you to doodle, think and explore. In time, Sarah hopes you’ll have a book of memories to treasure forever.

Sarah shares “It’s a book to gather the micro-moments through life. I designed ‘This is Not a Planner‘ to cover the approach from all sides. Some are superficial – some are fun, and some will require a bit of thought. It all adds up to be a reflection of your whole, wonderful, crazy, unique life.

I realise for it to be useful it’ll need to be something different for each of you. For some it’s a planner, for some it’s a journal to capture your daily thoughts. I have purposefully kept dates and days of the week out of it to allow for everything to feel valuable and to remove the pressure of missing a day.”

Features:

  • 12 Monthly planner
  • 52 weekly exercises encouraging reflection, humour, and imagination
  • Lined Life Notes sections for additional planning or journal-writing
  • Explore section to capture the things that you lose in your phone, recipes, Netflix recommendations etc
  • Project plan section for when you need a little more structure
  • 196 linen-bound, gold embossed book

1. How did your journey into the world of illustration begin?

After I had my second daughter – I knew I wouldn’t be getting another maternity leave, so I knew that whatever I did for work from here on out had to be something that I loved. I had been really happy in my marketing roles at Coles, but I just wondered what I could do on my own.

The term mumpreneur was being thrown around quite a bit at the time and I honestly had visions of being a millionaire from my living room. Over the course of several dinners with friends and family – it turned out that all my ideas were either rubbish or had been done (thanks a lot open table!)

So not one to be beaten, I thought, well what skills do I have? I remembered that I loved drawing when I was younger. I was due to sit an A-Level in Art in the UK but I couldn’t keep up with the workload of an extra subject so I dropped it and didn’t pick up a pencil again from the age of 16 to 34.

I took some evening classes in subjects that I was interested in, I love fashion, I studied painting techniques at VCA and over time built my style into what it is today – though I feel it’s about to take another big leap in a new direction!

2. What inspired you to create the journal?

The journal was really born out of the tough COVID years! I like to look for the positive in things and COVID did give me the time to think about what my audience wants from me. And I realised that all my customers whether private commissions or big brands are looking for a way to capture a memory, or a special moment.

This happened at a time when I felt that the way I was approaching life was changing too. During covid, looking at a diary full of to-do lists and habit trackers, I started to feel like it was all missing the point. Where were the good moments? The catch-up with friends, the funny story you heard. I thought all this detail goes to waste every year and no one is holding on to it.

So I created ‘This is Not a Planner’ which functions as a diary but also as a place to capture memories. I’ve created prompts for little details of the day-to-day and much more involved thought-provoking exercises. You can bounce about the book where ever you feel the mood takes you.

3. What are you hoping people will get out of it?

I hope that people will be able to look back on a full year of amazing memories. Instead of turfing last year’s diary in the bin, I have designed ‘This is Not a Planner’ to sit on the shelf to keep in its gorgeous linen-bound cover.

I hope people gifting the book as gifting a year of treasured memories.

4. If you had to pick one, which element of the journal is most near and dear to your heart?

The Bucket list – I’m a dreamer so I love adding new ideas to mine and trying to bring them to reality.

‘This is Not a Planner’ – Available now at: sarahdarby.com.au $45.00 AUD.