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April 2, 2011

Two Sketchbook Pages

I was in Washington DC this week for a meeting, and the cherry blossoms were in full bloom and there were pansies and daffodils seen everywhere.  I'm definitely yearning for spring! 

Here is a quick pansy sketch - which I painted with watercolor pencils.

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During part of my meeting I doodled to stay focused and here are some of the images that I sketched.  The many positions of the microphones are endlessly fascinating.  I think I posted a whole page of them from this meeting last year.

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March 27, 2011

Art and Quilt Day

Yesterday my friend Teri and I had a full day of Art and Quilts - and here is one painting and one photo of the highlights.

At 9:30 AM I was one of only several dozen people in the new German Expressionism exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art and I sketched this beautiful sculpture.  It was the final day of the Members' Preview Days and they opened 1 hour before the museum opened.  It is a fabulous exhibit and I will return several times to see it, learn more, and copy the Masters.

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After exploring several other venues at Fashion Institute of Technology and a Gallery and Lunch in Chelsea, we ended the day at a special 6 day exhibit sponsored by the American Folk Art Museum and made possible by Joanna S. Rose who funded the exhibit of 651 of her red and white quilts for 6 days at the Park Avenue Armory as a gift to the city of New York.  It is impossible to describe the impact of the number of quilts and the artistic installation in this enormous 55,000 square foot space. 

Martha Stewart said "

"Two days ago, I went to the most incredible display of quilts that I have ever seen.  My TV crew joined me at the Park Avenue Armory at 643 Park Avenue (between 66th and 67th Street), in New York City to see the American Folk Art Museum’s presentation of “Infinite Variety:  Three Centuries of Red and White Quilts.”  Joanna Rose, a New York quilt collector, has a collection of more than 1,300 quilts but she really wanted to put her entire collection of red and white quilts on public display, all 651 of them and no two alike!  If at all possible, I urge you to see this exhibit, which runs through March 30th.  It’s simply breath taking!  And please tune into my television show on Monday on Hallmark Channel, to see the segment about the quilts that we shot at the Armory."

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This is one of my photos, but you can read about the exhibit and see slide shows here and here and here.

March 22, 2011

Two More Card Players by Cezanne

I'm obsessed by Cezanne's drawing studies for his 5 Card Player paintings.  I went back to the current Card Player exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art early on Saturday morning and sketched two more of the drawings.  I'm slowly working my way around the galleries!

The original drawing is done without color, but I couldn't resist a little watercolor wash.

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The watercolor wash in this drawing is based on Cezanne's painting of the original drawing.

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I love drawing from the Masters and seek out drawings to copy as part of my self-education.  I hope to get back to the exhibit and spend another hour finishing the drawings before it closes.

March 18, 2011

March 2011 Figure Drawing

Another evening of figure drawing at the Society of Illustrators.  This was a fun evening because my art buddy Teri met my book group friend Istar for the first time and they had so many things to talk about during dinner and our breaks.

There were two models for each pose (one standing and one sitting) - starting with ten 2 minute poses for warm up, then four 5 min., two ten minute, and finally three 20 minute poses.  Throughout the 3 hours, two musicians played and I sipped a glass of wine.  During the final pose, the models always pose together - by then we should be able to handle two models in 20 minutes.  

I used a 9B graphite pencil for the first drawing and watercolor pencil (Burnt Siena and then Chestnut) for the second and third drawings.  Last night I wasn't in the mood to fuss with faces, so we need to imagine them.  The woman model reminded me of Botticelli's venus and my skills just couldn't capture her beauty. 

My current sketchbook doesn't fit on my scanner, so these are photos.

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March 15, 2011

A Visit to the Morgan Library and Exhibit

Last week my Journal Study Group met Gwyneth Leech at her gallery exhibit entitled "Hypergraphia" and visited the Diary Exhibit at the Morgan Library.  Pat already posted some information about our day on her blog.  

I love books, notebooks, journals, log books, and diaries and I'm almost embarassed by the number I created over many years.  It was a thrill to look at actual diaries from the Morgan collection, especially several that contained sketches and watercolor paintings.  The Morgan website has podcasts and readings of many of the diaries.

Illustrated Diary #1:  The peasant woman that I painted below was sketched from an anonymous diary entitled "Focus on Fashion: A Lady's Travelogue (1869)."  I would love to see some of the other pages to see more fashions and her biting descriptions. 

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Illustrated Diary #2:  My real favorite, however, was one kept by Fanny Tremlow.  This photo from her diary was downloaded from this website.

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Illustrated memoir by Fanny Twemlow (1881-1989), a British woman in a World War II internment camp in France, 1940-41. Gift of Julia P. Wightman, 2006.

In December 1940, the German army carried out a swooping raid throughout Occupied France aimed at rounding up any woman found in possession of British papers. The subsequent internment of some 4000 women was carried out during one of the coldest winters in living memory. English spinster, Miss Fanny Twemlow, was among those unlucky enough to end up in the infamous camp, Frontstalag 142, on the French-German border. Throughout her captivity, she was determined to secretly make sketches of camp life as well as keep a diary.

FRONTSTALAG 142: The Internment diary of an English Lady, by Katherine Lack will soon be published.