Page 3 of 49

September 1, 2015

Museums of Art and Design and American Folk Art

Pat, Benedicte and I spent a full day last week at the Museum of Art and Design (MAD) and the American Museum of Folk Art.  There were two excellent exhibits at MAD, but as artists who like to draw figures, the Ralph Pucci Mannequin exhibit made us pull out our sketchpads and iPad, and want to draw.  One half of the exhibit showed his studio, with mannequin body part casts and partially assembled and assembled bodies.  I love the yellow full body casts on the top shelves. 

The other half was a huge demonstration of mannequins created by designers - for example Diane Von Furstenberg.  But one of them was even designed by one of my favorite artists - Maira Kalman.

Here are two photos I took of the studio section and one of Benedicte photographing one half of the line-up.




I selected a few mannequins to draw.  The one on the left was designed by Maira Kalman.


Next I sketched just the heads of the most bizarre mannequins.  Most of their bodies were the same shapes, but in different positions. 


After lunch we went to the American Folk Art Museum to see the "Folk Art and American Modernism" Exhibit and my favorite piece was a 19th C. Archangel Gabriel weathervane.  I loved the patina and tried to create some of it with my paint colors.   


August 24, 2015

Portraits and Figure Drawings

I'm not very good drawing portraits of my family, but I think there is some improvement in my sketches of my husband.  He was sitting across from me on a Manhattan bus when I sketched him in the first drawing below, the other two were sketched while having coffee at the Boat Pond in Central Park.  He was doing the New York Times Sat and Sunday Crossword Puzzles and therefore quite still.



This page was pre-printed with watercolor and then drawn in graphite, with a little charcoal.



Barry with the Crossword Puzzle he finished while I was sketching him with graphite and a little charcoal.


I try to go to figure drawing weekly during the summer, weather permitting.  Figure Al Fresco  at Battery Park City has one clothed model, in the Park, for two hours.  Last week was the second time I sketched this model - who told us he lifts weights and runs marathons. 

I did 10 0ne minute sketches, and 5 Two minute sketches.  Here are two of the 2 minute sketches that were done on newsprint.



These are 3 of the 5 minute sketches done with soluble graphite and water. 


August 6, 2015

Wednesday is Art Day in Battery Park

This is a view of the Southern tip of Manhattan, and the trees along the water are part of Battery Park.  The multilevel triangular-roofed structure, at the bottom of the photo, is the Museum of Jewish Heritage, and we spend the morning painting, just to the south of that building, and in the afternoon draw a clothed model just to the north of it.  Turning my camera a little further North and you can see The Freedom Tower, the new World Trade Center, which dominates the skyline.



The gardens surrounding the Museum are full of dinner-plate size hibiscus this month every year.


If I turned around while painting, this is the view I would have seen.



My first painting on Wed. was a composite of the 3 color flowers on display.  Then I just looked up, and decided to draw "what was in front of me" - the wall of the Museum with sky, clouds, and trees reflecting in one set of windows. 



After lunch we moved around the Museum, to the area of the Park known as South Cove, for Figure Al Fresco to draw Rebecca.  She is a model who I like to draw best in very short poses.  Here are the last 4 of my 10 one minute poses. 




This is a free program sponsored by the Battery Park Conservancy and they even bring art supplies to every session from the beginning of May to the end of October. 

August 4, 2015

Weekend Coffee in Central Park

We live within walking distance of the Conservatory Water in Central Park, and this is one of a series of photos I took this summer on mornings when we go for coffee and watch the activity of the toy boats in the pond.  This is Le Pain Quotidien café - the source of our coffee and my croissant.  Most people stop to buy food and continue on their walk, so slowly sipping coffee like we do is not a problem.  Children rent remote-controlled sailboats for the pond ($11 for 30 minutes).  The "big boys" bring their own toys and the handcrafted beauty in the photo below plays Dvorak's New World Symphony as it sails!





I frequently draw/paint while we are there and here are 3 recent sketchbook pages.

Dogs can be off their leash until 9AM.  New York City dogs are very well behaved, as anyone knows who watches many dog walkers with 6 -8 big dogs on a leash.  They don't bark or nip each other, and I love watching a group of them sitting patiently watching an apartment entrance waiting for their "friend" to come out to join them.  One of the big dogs took a nap at my feet, and I sketched him in two positions before his owner woke him to go home.  




This weekend I sketched a Mother and child on Saturday, and another contemplative young woman on Sunday.




There are still lots of flowers in bloom, but there were lots of bees buzzing around, so I just looked from a distance and didn't try to draw them. 


July 28, 2015

Back to Figure Drawing

I went to two drop-in figure drawing sessions last week.  The first was outdoors, with clothed models, in Battery Park in New York City.  We had a male model with weight lifting musculature and poses.  I did all 10 one minute poses on newsprint with a graphite pencil and was pleased that I could capture gestures in such a short time.  Here are the 10 drawings, five on each page.  These are photographs on large sheets.



Five Minute Poses:  The model had shaved sides and hair on top of his head.


My second session was at Meetup, and the model was familiar to me from this site and Society of Illustrators.  On this sheet are two 10 minute portraits and one 20 minute pose.