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September 1, 2014

Urban Sketchers New York - Union Square

The Weekday Urban Sketchers in New York met at Union Square last week and I painted on the back side of my accordion watercolor sketchbook  I enjoyed using this book so much that I made another one today!

This is the full spread from Union Square on the back side of the accordion panels.



Here are the individual paintings:


Vegetables and flowers from the Farmer's Market.



A chair, umbrella, and sign from Pavillion - an open restaurant at the north end of Union Square.



The Entrance to the Subway Station and a young woman burning incense and selling crystals and other spiritual items. 



This group will now meet on Thursdays - from 11-3 - at various venues around New York City.  Anyone who is interested in joining the group can follow the Urban Sketchers NY Blog to learn about the weekly site.   



August 26, 2014

Urban Sketchers - NYC Aug 14th

We went to Madison Square Park for my second day with the Urban Sketchers - NYC.  I took the accordion book that I used for my first day with them and completed the first side of the paper with this sketch of the Flatiron Building and my friend Benedicte sketching in front of me.  The accordion book is here: 

This group meets weekly and I just created a new category for drawings done at these events.  My category list in way down under the monthly entries for my blog.



I did a few preparatory sketches, based on Liz Steel's recent demo in Sketchbook School Semester 2 - and overcame my fear of failure sketching this iconic NYC landmark. 



After lunch I searched for another building to draw around Madison Square Park and was drawn to this one because of the multiple rooftop water towers.  These sketches were done with a Tombow marker and then "painted" with clear water in a Niji waterbrush. 


August 22, 2014

A Wonderful Day at MoMA

I had an amazing day at The Museum of Modern Art last Friday.  My art friends were busy, and I hadn't seen the Toulouse-Lautrec or Jasper Johns exhibits, so I packed a lunch and went at 9:30 when these exhibits opened for Members.  The Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit was posters, and many other forms of lithographs from the MoMA collection and I was mesmerized by the lines.  I carefully looked at, and photographed most pieces, and then drew one detail from an early poster because I loved it!  Here is my Englishman at the Moulin Rouge, 1892 - 3 years after the Moulin Rouge opened in Paris.  I sketched with graphite and decided to leave it that way.



The Jasper Johns exhibit was a collection of drawings, prints, and oil paintings from the last 18 months.  Since we saw the exhibit of his work and learned about his printmaker John Lund, I can't get enough information about him.  I'm not someone who easily works in a series.  And he experiments and cuts printing plates, and reworks much of his art.   This series began with a tattered and paint spattered photo of Lucien Freud, sitting on a bed with his head in his hands.  Johns drew the images several times in different media,  manipulated the image by duplication, and then made two series of prints.  I thought the prints were too dark, but couldn't learn enough about his process.  

They also had one of his number series and I love the shape of his numbers, so I made a grid with 9 spaces and made quick sketches only to find I was one box short because I forgot about the zero.  So here is my sketchbook page - to remember the experiences in that gallery.  The nine is just a cut-out that overlays the page and can be lifted.



By then it was lunchtime, so I took my lunch and bought coffee at the Sculpture Garden Café - and enjoyed the beautiful weather and amazing art.  We are going back to Paris for vacation in October and I couldn't resist painting this vintage sculpture from the Paris Metro. 



On Saturday I worked on a challenge from my friend Teri while we were having coffee at our favorite café in Central Park.  Teri sent us digital images of small details from famous paintings - that she received from one of her art groups.  Pat and Benedicte did the first 1-2, but this was my first.  If you look closely you can see the original image that I printed out and collaged on the upper left.  And then I just played with ideas and completed the painting with my composition. 

My Art History consultant Bunny says that it was probably painted by a 19th C Orientalist, but I can't find it online.   So I must wait for Teri to return from a Dude ranch out west to learn her identity.  Any ideas?? 


July 25, 2014

Sketching with Urban Sketchers NYC


I spent one day this week sketching with the New York City Urban Sketchers Group.  All of our time was spent in the West Village and I used an accordion watercolor book that I made last year for my paintings. 

Here is the open book showing the portion of the paper that I covered. 



The front and back were covered with paste paper that I made in a 2013 workshop at Center for Book Arts.



Flowers, a bird feeder, and a house sparrow in a garden of a St. Luke's Episcopal Church on Hudson St. 



A landmarked house in a beautiful area near the Cherry Lane Theater. 



Table items at Pain Quotidien where 8 of us stopped for cold coffee and tea.


This group was the new "weekday" portion of the NYC Urban Sketchers Group - and hopefully the group will be able to support both a Saturday and Weekday group to accommodate many different work schedules.  I will fill the rest of this accordion the next time I sketch with them.


July 15, 2014

Drawing and Painting in Central Park

We went to the Conservatory Water again this weekend for morning coffee and I did 3 watercolor journal pages.  The first is a line drawing of the home we visited on Martha's Vineyard last month (from photo).  I still haven't decided whether I will paint this. 



It started to rain, but we were nicely protected by the big umbrellas on the tables on the Snack Shop Patio.  We invited someone without an umbrella to join us in our extra seat and she stayed and talked for awhile after the rain shower ended.  Meanwhile I sketched a partially opened umbrella at an adjacent table.  She arrived Saturday night from London and was here to work on a West End play that is moving to New York City. 



When the sun came out, I sketched two of the many types of flowers that are in bloom around the patio.