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October 11, 2011

Picasso's Drawings - 1890-1921

Picasso's drawings, from 1890 (age 9) to 1921 are currently on exhibit at the Frick Collection.  My husband and I walked down for a quick visit this past weekend and this is a drawing inspired by one of his standing nudes.  The fountain and plant were added later when I sat down with my husband in the Garden Court of the museum.

The drawings combine his early, very realistic style, with an evolving cubist style - and he was a master of both.  The majority of the drawings, and a video about the exhibit can be seen here.  I was disappointed that the one I chose to draw is not one of the drawings that is reproduced.




October 8, 2011

9/11 Memorial and Battery Park Figure Al Fresco

This past week, my friend Teri and I visited the new 9/11 Memorial and then met Pat for lunch and Figure Al Fresco at Battery Park City. 

It was a gorgeous cool, sunny day - with an intense blue sky- much like 9/11/2001.  My daughter was working on the 45th floor of the American Express Building, directly across West St. from the North Tower and witnessed the first plane strike.  She evacuated onto West St after the South Tower was hit, and fled minutes before the North Tower collapsed onto West St., damaging the edge of her building. 

Here is my sketch of the Memorial site showing the placement of the two pools, the Museum and Freedom Tower which are being completed, and the planned Performing Arts space.  The Freedom tower, named 1WTC, is at the 84th floor and still growing. 



Here are 3 of many photos that I took on the WTC Site.  The scale of the pools really surprised me and are quite beautiful - the sound of constant water passing over the falls and then down into the center square felt very calming. 

The South Pool:  Those are tiny little people seen above the edge of the pool to give you some idea of the scale.


The North Pool:  The building on the top right is the new Freedom Tower, which will be the tallest building in the US.  The building in the top center is the building my daughter worked in that year.


Here is the photo I took of 1WTC - Freedom Tower - from several blocks south of the Memorial site. 


Just one page from my figure drawing sketchbook that afternoon.  This was a 20 minute sketch with a watercolor pencil.




October 4, 2011

Our Meet-up Drawing Group - at Carl Schurz Park

The Central Park Sketching and Art Meetup Group met in Carl Schurz Park this past weekend.  There are lovely views over the East River from the Embankment - and the added bonus was the annual Gracie Square Art Show.

My first sketch was the view across the East River at 84th Street.  It was an opportunity for me to leave my comfort zone and try to paint trees, sky with gray clouds, and water.  The pigeon sat in front of me on the railing and I quickly sketched him, begging him to give me a full minute before flying off again.



I sketched Amanda, another Meetup member, during our 2nd sketching period.  And was surprised to discover that Ben sketched me while I sketched her.


Ben's sketch of me:


There was a wonderful wire sculpture artist at the art show and I requested permission to sketch his bass player . He said "go for it."  Ron Stattner's website is <>.  I think you'll enjoy seeing his work.



September 29, 2011

I Love Figure Drawing

This shouldn't be a surprise to me since I spent >40 years learning about and caring for the human body.  But I still am surprised by the almost unconscious pull toward drawing people.   Last week I was tired, and it was raining, and I didn't go to figure drawing, the first time I planned to return after the August break.  So I pulled one of my two books of photos off the shelf and sketched two nude figures.  They were sketched with a watercolor pencil and then wet to create some shading.


On Friday morning my husband and I went to an open rehearsal of the New York Philharmonic and we sat close enough for me to sketch 3 violinists.  I am obsessed with trying to figure out the positions of their hands on the bow and the chords.  Their hands are so graceful in those positions.  The middle sketch is of Conductor Alan Gilbert's mother.  She was a member of the orchestra for many years before her son was selected as the new music director and conductor.  As the mother 3 children, including  two boys, I am intrigued with this beyond belief.  One of my sons chose the same specialty as mine - but in Pediatrics - and I never anticipated that would occur. 



Tuesday evening I had an enormous challenge when I finally returned to the Society of Illustrators to draw.  One of the two models didn't come, and the other was, in medical terms, morbidly obese.  And she had the biggest hair I've ever seen.  She was a wonderful artist's model and her positions were equally challenging.  She invited all of us to attend the NY Burlesque Festival this weekend to see her and some of the other models!  Here are the two 20 minute poses that I did on watercolor paper with a watercolor pencil.  The red color is her kimona.




September 25, 2011

Meetup Drawing on the Highline

Our Meetup Central Park Drawing and Art Group met on New York City's Highline last weekend.  It is an old, abandoned railroad track suspended above the city on the lower west side.  Now it is a lovely park, with many wonderful areas among gardens for sitting and socializing.  I climbed to the top of the stairs of the Highline at one of the entry points several times in the past two summers, but never walked along it due to the heat.  Last week we had a fabulous day and I got to see and draw at 3 separate areas from 18th Street South.  The link above is to the the website and the many images of the Highline posted there.

The yellow rectangle is actually a huge billboard that framed my view of the city looking north.


Although there are several modern buildings which are built above and over the highline, there are also old industrial buildings along the path.


We walked to the southern end of the Highline for our last sketch, and I chose to draw some of the art vendors on Washington Street in the Meatpacking area.


This area of Manhattan has changed so much since we moved back to NYC 20 years ago.  The streets, restaurants, shops, and especially Chelsea Market were crowded very on Saturday afternoon.