Tag Archives: journal

Ibis feather

I started a new sketchbook last week. This time I am using Como paper. It is very cheap and great weight, but not designed for watercolour. It is like a very very thick cartridge paper. What I DO like about it is the size. I wanted a reasonably big sketchbook next, as my last one was biggish. I have an even bigger one made (from wc paper) but I decided it was too heavy to use in the summer when I am often carrying my book all day.

It is a case bound book. The paste paper (cover) is courtesy of Ann Adams who gave it to me because I admired it.

This feather is from an ibis. I found it in the Botanic Gardens a few weeks ago at the last Spring Sketchabout. I didn’t have time to draw it at the time so I decided it would make an excellent first page of my new book. My name and contact details are now to the right of the feathery blue line.

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Maritime Museum

Carpentaria 2We went to Darling Harbour near the Maritime Museum on Saturday with the Sydney Sketch Meetup group.  It was a perfect day – 22 degrees. Maybe winter will be over soon. This is my third drawing and the one I’m happiest with.

With my first drawing I went straight in with the pen and the proportions weren’t correct. But once you’ve done those pen strokes, you Carpentaria 1have to go with it. So the next drawings I made some rudimentary marks to get the proportions correct before I drew.This red one took 45 minutes. A lot of that time was in putting on more and more red. The ship was bright glowing vermilion.

This drawing was from the other side of the same ship and it was done before the redder one. I experimented with a new Tombow pen I’d bought on Friday. I want to use my Tombow pens in this sketchbook, but I needed a pale grey for the shadow.  I did the drawing in pen with grey Tombow first, then added colour.
BarekiThe Bareki was actually the first  drawing of the day, and the one when I learnt that with ships, it was best to put pencil proportions in first. I will try to draw it again one day soon. I have drawn a few ships in the last 12 months or so and they are more difficult than they look.

Some months ago I bought this book Painting & Drawing Boats and I can really recommend it. In fact anything by Moira Huntly I have three of hers now.


Filed under boats, Copic Multiliner, drawing, journal, Maritime Museum, Prismacolour pencils, tombow pens, working harbour

A Grey Day

MY house is not actually grey inside – it’s cream. It was just very dark inside at 4pm. The street lights were going on and off all day It was so dark and it’s COLD. Drew this about 4pm.I decided this one needed watercolour pencils.

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Filed under drawing, EDiM, sketching, watercolour pencils

27th Sketchcrawl

FerryWe’d planned for some time to go to The Rocks for this sketchcrawl. Then it was announced that Jessica Watson was arriving and there were special events clearways and what-all. I decided to go down there early while I could get on a bus. It was a sunny autumn day and I found a bench where I could sit and draw this Harbour Ferry – something I’ve been meaning to do for some time. Quite a few of the others arrived around nine, so we had a coffee at Rossini’s and proceeded to The Rocks to find things to draw.

Manic Mansions

This is just one of many staircases in this old apartment building. A passer-by told us that it was originally built for the workers who built Sydney Harbour Bridge (opened 1932).It is known locally as Manic Mansions as it is a Housing Commission building and according to our informant the tenantry are the type who throw fridges down the stairs in the night. The noise coming from someone’s radio was certainly challenging.

Nurses WalkWe had lunch at the usual French courtyard place, then walked around trying to find a spot where the light was right. This place at Nurses Walk from Harrington Street I chose because of the interesting shadows on the face of the building.

After that drawing we were exhausted so we headed home via Nurses walk, but got side-tracked just by the second bush, – a back entrance to Phillip’s Foote – well-known Sydney watering hole that I hadn’t visited for a very long time.

And please note, I painted TWO trees for Every Day in May.

Phillip's Foote


Filed under boats, Copic Multiliner, drawing, EDiM, sketchcrawls, sketching, urban landscape, watercolour


My big sunglasses have creamy semi-transparent frames. At this time of the year, when the sun is low in the sky, it gets inside the frames and the light flares. Raybans again for me next time. Yes, those colours really were in the shadows.


Filed under Copic Multiliner, drawing, EDiM, journal, pen and wash, sketching, watercolour

Organised chaos – Kitchen Sink

Organised chaos(today’s challenge) is the kitchen bench waiting for me to do the dishes. The breakfast dishes are in the sink,. but the coffee pot and the plastics are still on the bench. I couldn’t finish the dishes until I had captured the way the light was falling on the things on the bench. The red plastic dishes are the cats’ dishes. The green ginger jar holds my teabags. I finally did the dishes and rushed out to see the Archibald Prize exhibition.


Filed under Copic Multiliner, drawing, EDiM, journal, sketching, watercolour

Fish Sauce

I chose this bottle of fish sauce for the graphic qualities of the red label against the nearly black sauce. And not too much complications to draw on the label either!
Ayam Brand is an Indonesian brand. Ayam means chicken. I was surprised how much of their stuff I have. I do love Asian food, particularly Vietnamese, Thai and Indonesian.
I stamped it with my chop that I had carved in 1982 at a Hangzhou Calligraphers’ Guild. Unfortunately though I have two lots of ink, they have dried up and I need more.


Filed under drawing, EDiM, journal, sketching, watercolour