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October 12, 2013

Obsessed with Sea Gulls

I love watching the sea gulls during our beach walks, and take lots of photos to document their size, coloration, and movements during take-off and landing.  This sea gull was drawn on the first page of my summer beach sketchbook.  Wish I knew why some birds have that red spot on their beak.

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These are gulls photographed during our last visit to the beach for this year, and all were drawn and painted from photos that I took during takeoff and landing.  I love to watch them run on the sand for a few feet before lifting off - and then gliding in after one big circular path over the surf.

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Good bye sea gulls until next summer!

October 8, 2013

FIT Figure Drawing Class

Last night was my 6th figure drawing I class at FIT.  I was very apprehensive about taking a class, but I'm really enjoying the structure and challenges.  We spent the first 3 weeks doing contour drawings of models - with anatomical review and examples of figures drawn by Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt.  I've posted some of those drawings in the last month. 

In classes 4-6 we began shading.  My two drawings of the young female model from Class 4 were also posted previously.  At the end of the 4th class our homework was to draw 5 hands (with #5 holding something) and 2 feet.  As much as I was enjoying taking this class for fun, I was also thrilled with my grade of A on this assignment!

These are my husband's hands and my feet.

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In Class 5 we did a portrait on toned paper (which was handed in at the end of the class).  But I do have the warm up exercise in which the model changed head direction every 5 minutes.  We looked at Holbein portraits as wonderful examples.

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Last night was my 6th class, and we continued shading - reviewing the beautiful drawings of Kathe Kollwitz and Peter Paul Rubens.  This is one of the long poses (20 min) that I did.

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I'm still using a 9B graphite pencil on 18 X 24" paper and only flirting with charcoal in a few fast sketches.  Still hate the mess!!  Our homework assignment for next week is a self-portrait on 18 x 24" gray-toned paper.  Yikes!

October 6, 2013

Matisse

We were at the beach for the last few days, and I have nothing to show for it yet except lots of photos of sea gulls.  However, Pat, Jana Bouc, and I went to MoMA during Jana's NYC visit, and while wandering around the permanent collection, I sketched a Matisse sculpture. 

I stopped and looked at this sculpture for much longer than usual because I was watching 3 women in plastic gloves feeling the small statue.  The woman wearing a black suit (museum personnel?) was specifically having them feel every part of the statue and even explaining the shapes of the negative spaces.  Then it became apparent to me that one of the other women was blind and the remaining one was guiding her around the museum.  What a wonderful program.

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October 1, 2013

For Book Lovers

I had a big birthday this past summer and my oldest son recently arranged a belated birthday adventure for me.  We both love books, and he decided that he wanted to find a unique used bookstore, somewhere in the country outside of New York City, and make that our destination.

He picked me up early this past Sunday and we started at his favorite coffee place in Piermont NY.  Cyclists ride up Route 9W to Piermont (including my son), and they stop at Bunberry before riding back to the City.  It is a very old and quaint town, a place that had a railroad connection to the Hudson River for transport of goods up the river.    

We then proceeded about 100 miles up the Taconic Parkway to Columbia County to Rodger's Book Barn.  I can't even begin to describe this incredible place.  Maureen Rodgers opened this store 40 years ago and says that she has 40-50,000 books.  It is in a rural area, with lovely farms, barns, and cows.  Before GPS, Maureen told me that visitors would call her when they got close and needed directions for the final few miles.  There are multiple rooms on two floors - all full of books and other memorabilia.  We browsed for 2 hours and each of us left with many books.  I picked out 15 - for a total of $35!  Here are a few photos that I took.

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He selected a specific restaurant in Hudson, NY, a nearby town, for a late lunch.  We were impressed at how this town was resurrecting itself with so many upscale restaurants and shops.  Lunch was delightful, and I did my only sketch of the day while we were waiting to be served.  We then walked along Warren St. and were intrigued by one really cute place that served interesting beer, sold many new books, and had a full room of art supplies. 

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I'm including business cards for the Book Barn in Hillsdale and the restaurant in Hudson for anyone that is passing through Columbia County, NY on the NY Thruway.  Both places really deserve a visit.

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We returned to New York City at 6:30 PM - with our book bags, happy and full.

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