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October 26, 2013

Shopping in New York City

A wonderful friend from my days in San Antonio, Tx is staying with me in New York City - a regular Fall vacation for her.  We spent 2 days with my artist frriend Pat seeing current art exhibits - but none of my pencil drawings are yet painted.  So I'm going to take you on the beginning of our shopping day in the City.

We started at Rockefeller Center - and the Zamboni just finished sweeping the ice rink.

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Our next stop was 47th Street's diamond district which is on 47th St. between 5th and 6th Avenues.  You know you are there by the tall sculptures - topped with a "diamond" at each end of the block.

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 Cold weather arrived in NYC this week - it was 37 degrees yesterday morning.  But the Chrysler Building looked beautiful in the sun - as did the front of the New York Public Library.

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Our primary destination was the Garment District, now renamed the Fashion Center.  These are two sketches of the large sculptures in the district center.  I did them several years ago for a tour map that I did with my friend Paula Nadelstern.

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I thought Project Runway fans might want to come with me to Mood and see Swatch.  There is an office concourse between W. 37th and 38th St. and an elevator operator to take you to the 3rd floor.  Rents for stores on the street level are exorbitant, so many of the best fabric shops are now on upper floors of office buildings.

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This is the simple entry to Mood when you exit the elevator.  The store is spread over the 2nd and 4th floor by staircases within Mood.

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We went there to buy printed faux suede, but I thought you might enjoy seeing the real leather section - where Kathy couldn't resist buying 4 hides.

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And I had to show you the zebra skin, that came from the Ralph Lauren design house and was used as a wall hanging.  Right below it is a beautiful pale golden mink skin!  It is hard to look at some of these, but they are beautiful. 

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And finally, here is Swatch, who plays with Tim Gunn while the designers are buying fabric and leather at Mood.  He was taking a little nap in the middle of the top step on a staircase.

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We then had lunch at Ben's Deli on W38th, bought more fabric at B and J on 7th Ave, got beads at Beads World on Broadway, and walked to The City Quilter on W 25th St - ending our day back at the apartment 9 hours later. 

 

September 17, 2013

A Few Sketchbook Pages From Last Week

Last Week Pat and I spent 2 full days out and about.  On Friday we went to Christies to see the previews for the South Asian Modern + Contemporary Art in the morning and the preview for the huge Interwoven Globe   exhibit at the Met in the afternoon.  Lunch in Rockefeller Center was a wonderful break between these two events and I sketched a few of the flags while we were eating and resting.

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On Sunday I went to the New York Public Library to return a book, and couldn't resist standing in the sun and sketching one of the Lions that welcome visitors to the Main Library on both sides of the stairs. 

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I was returning a book to the Mid-Manhattan branch (a circulating branch across from the big Research Library) and I found two terrific books in the drawing section.  I brought home one to read and will borrow the other one on my next visit.

The first is:  More Than Words:  Illustrated Letters from the Smithsonian's Archives of American Art.  Liza Kirwin, 2005.

The second is: Queen Victoria's Sketchbook by Marina Warner.  I looked through the entire book and was surprised to learn that she kept a sketchbook during her entire life.  Many drawings are in pen and ink, others also were painted with watercolor.  She sketched people in her life, opera characters, ballet costumes, and occasional places. When I have time, I'd love to read it.

August 26, 2013

Sketchbook Pages From My Meetup Session

The Central Park Sketching and Art Meetup Group met in Battery Park on Saturday and I finally was able to draw Pier A - the oldest pier on Manhattan island.  It was built in the 1880s as a home for the New York Harbor police and was landmarked in 1975.  It is currently being renovated, with a projected opening in May 2014.  It will have a high end restaurant, food court, event space, and a tourist information center.  That area definitely needs a few more restaurants during peak tourist season!  Here it is - all newly painted!  The clock is said to be an old ship's clock. 

This drawing was done as a double page spread - and this is all I finished in the 45 min session.

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The group then moved further north in Wagner Park - to the gardens next to the Museum of Jewish Heritage- and I painted lovely pink flowers. I have no idea of their name, but they were a delicate pink with a yellow "fuzzy ring" and flat yellow green center. Can you tell that I am not a gardener and never have been?

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I had a few more minutes before we ended session 2 and shared our sketches, so I did a fast sketch of one of the other participants. Some day I will learn how to get a hat firmly planted on someone's head.

 

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During our final session, at the north river corner of South Cove, I sketched gorgeous trumpet vines - being dive-bombed by big black flies that were hovering around the flowers. The weather was fantastic and it was a perfect 3 hour meetup.

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August 12, 2013

Figure Drawing Last Week at the Society of Illustrators

I really liked one of the models last week at the Society of Illustrators.  Between poses I told her that I loved her hair and she laughed.  She said that an artist at one of her previous gigs was horrified by it, and finally said that she was just going to pretend she had no hair!  I'm just posting 5 out of 18 drawings that I did.

Two Minute Pose

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Five Minute Pose

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 Two Ten Minute Poses

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Twenty Minute Pose:  This is the third time that I used a paintbrush and watercolor to draw a figure - and at least I'm no longer scared.  Practice, Practice, Practice!

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August 9, 2013

Sunday Morning at the Conservatory Water

The official name of the pond on the Eastside of Central Park just north of 72nd St. is the Conservatory Water.  Our family, however, calls it the Toy Boat Pond because remote guided sailboats can be rented there and the pond is always full of boats - and at least one duck family.

We spent another glorious morning there last Sunday morning - sitting under an umbrella at a table at the Terrace Snack Bar.  We sip coffee and while I draw and paint, my husband does the NY Times crossworld puzzle.

Here is my painting of the Snack Bar from last Sunday morning.

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And here is my latest flower painting from the lovely garden surrounding the Terrace.

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This is my previous painting of the same location.  We took care of our 3rd oldest grandchild on Friday for many years and this was our favorite morning walk, weather permitting.

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