Another wet day for an Urban Sketchers Event. The venue this time was the ‘back lanes of Newtown’which is my local area. You might remember that Liz Steel and I went for a reconoitre to plan the venue and I sketched this portion of the building.
It started to rain almost as soon as we started sketching, but I persevered till I had all the ink on, even though I was drawing on a wet page. The paper was the robustissimo Stillman and Birn Delta series, and I was using a Copic Multiliner pen which continued to draw on the wet paper. Not only was the rain splashing on the paper, but the building turned out to be the rear of Splash restaurant.
I sometimes walk along this back lane when I go to the library, so I am very familiar with the colours of the building and I also have a few photos of it. At this time of the year, on a sunny day, the airconditioning vents cast wonderful shadows. When i put the colour on later, at home, I painted a hint of the shadows from a photo, and although I deliberately painted a rainy sky, it looks as if the sun was out as well. It wasn’t.
Well, we had to sketch fast because of the weather, and then a number of us adjourned to The Pie Tin, on the next corner. It is a relatively new cafe specialising in pies, both savoury and sweet. I had some sort of a North African lamb pie, and it was delicious, chock full with meat.
In fact the conversation was almost worth the curtailed sketching. One of the things it let me to was Rod Byatt’s interesting discussion about Danny Gregory’s new book An Illustrated Journey, which we all own, of course. The conversation also, as always, turned to materials. My view is that there is an over emphasis on materials. Yes, they must be good quality, but more is not better. Colour mixing, rather than buying every colour. Not a popular or common view. And I have heaps of stuff.
Thanks to Chantal Vincent who made a video of our wet day at Cockatoo Island.
USK Sydney at Cockatoo Island – Crane Crawl. Saturday 02 March 2013 from Chantal V on Vimeo.
Saturday was the sketchcrawl, luckily on a cool day, after the previous day was 46.4C at the airport. That’s 115 and at the closest weather station to my house. Due to the hot day, the colour of the Gardens was looking a little more ochre than usual. That made my decision for me, as to whether to work consecutively in my new book of toned papers, or whether to choose the background for the sketch. Well, it seemed a little silly to go consecutive, just because I always do, when I’ve specially put some watercolour paper in there for when I need it.
In choosing the papers for my book, I used the lightest colours at the front and worked though to darker colours at the back. This was so, when I opened a page where two colours of paper created the spread, they wouldn’t be tonally very different. This is one of those spreads.
My first stop was the succulent garden, because usually you get baked in there on the concrete, and it was cool enough to tolerate it even though after 10a.m. Next stop was the statue so that I could draw something hard edged. Finally we found a stand of bamboo with shade as it was hotter by then. I like to draw bamboo from time to time, and I knew it would fit in to finish my spread quite well. I want to draw the black bamboo next. At this time of year its a matter of finding a place in the shade.
A beautiful day in the Gardens for sketching but lots of mozzies at the first spot. Luckily I had some RID, but they still managed to sneak in quite a few bites. We decided to sketch this plant, though we had no idea what it was. After a while a guide came by with a group, so we asked her. It is a ginger, and the red part is the bracts and only the yellow is the flower. I looked it up online and it is called Spiral Ginger. Once you know, it is easy to see, because it is a lot like the Beehive Ginger I drew in the Tropical Centre.
This week I was excited by a drawing of a boat by Jorge Royan where he used selective colour. It is not on his blog yet, but you can find it on Facebook on the Urban Sketchers page. Hence I decided to do selective colour in these sketches.
Next we moved away from the mozzies and as the sun was high in the sky we wandered around looking for a patch of shade. We found this little ‘glade’ not far from Twin Ponds and sat under the shade of a large tree. A breeze was coming off the harbour and we were nice and cool on a very hot day. These paperbark trees are so interesting to draw. The park at the end of my street has many of them.
This week I bought a brand new iPad.
Last weekend I had lunch with my sketching friends to hear all about the Urban Sketcher Symposium in Santo Domingo from Liz Steel who attended.
Liz brought me back the most wonderful gift – a sketch in watercolour and pen by Simonetta Capecchi I will have to photograph it and post it, with Simo’s permission of course.
Liz told me that France Belleville had recommended Procreate as a sketching app on IPad. I’m pretty sure Procreate owned Painter at one time. When I went to the Apple store on Monday morning the girl who attended to me also recommended it, and she said she’d tried them all. It was my first purchase from the App Store.
Last night I tried to figure it out and did this pencil drawing, but more importantly, later I worked out how to download the User Guide. Tonight I read it, then did a little tweaking, and hey presto, here is my first image from the iPad.
This is also my first blog post from the iPad, so I haven’t worked out if I can preview yet, or it I just have to go for it.
I guess this is some sort of banksia. Not being Australian-born and educated (except for my Fine Arts education) I’m a bit vague about Australian flowers. Oh yes, this looks right. There are other banksias that are totally different and I have some of them too. Here’s a very different one I drew at the Botanic Gardens and a different one again at Paddington Reservoir Gardens. No wonder I get confused.
I used my Copic Multiliners again for this one, but I introduced a bit of yellow by using a Tombow pen. It was the first time I’d used the red and I’m looking forward to doing a whole drawing in red. I used red, brown, olive and a bit of wine.
It occurred to me that in the 75 day sketch challenge with my own set of rules (that I must do the tones by rendering in pen, not by using colour) that Pitt Pens also qualify and so do Tombows. Using the fine end of the Tombows to render the tones opens up a whole new spectrum of colour for me – and you know how I do love colour.
Well, the 500th post is coming sooner than you think. Keep watching.