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November 7, 2009

Visual Journal Pages

I signed up for Kate Johnson's Visual Journaling Class and I'm trying to focus my sketches on my daily activities for several weeks.

I sketched and painted a detail from a beautiful stained class window at the Museum of the City of New York during a visit there this week.   

               MuseumCityNY.jpg

The following day we took care of our newest grandchild and I sketched his "lovey" - a British Jellycat animal called Scrumpty Elly.  My daughter-in-law takes his picture with this animal every month to see Zach's growth.  I sketched him with my non-permanent Varsity pen and then just wet the elephant to create the color.

                 ScrumptyElla.jpg

I made two new codex watercolor journals this week, and while I had my bookbinding equipment out, I made two watercolor pamphlet style journals with waste watercolor paper from a few recent recycled books.  One of them is a gift for a friend, the other may be the perfect watercolor booklet for my grand daughter.

                 PamphletSketchbooks.jpg

Today we took our oldest grandchild to the New York Philharmonic Young People's Concert and I had approximately 10 minutes before the lights went down to quickly sketch the stage.  Henry and I talked about the colors so I could remember them until I got home.

NYPhil.YPC1.jpg

October 10, 2009

2nd Figure Drawing Session at The Society of Illustrators

I went to my second figure drawing session last evening at the New York Society of Illustrators with my friend Istar.  On Tuesday evenings the models are nude, on Thursday evenings the models may wear parts of costumes.  I wanted to experience both - and liked both evenings equally well.  The setting is wonderful and there is live music during the entire 3 hours.  I came home with 9 two minute, 4 five minute, 2 ten minute, and 3 twenty minute sketches.  I'm just going to post examples of each.

The models posed with multiple hula hoops - the male model in yellow harem pants and the female model in a red bra and black leggings.  The addition of the hoops made the 2 minute sketches more difficult, but fun.

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Two models and a hula hoop even made 5 minute sketches a challenge.

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I wanted to remember the costumes in this 10 minute sketch and colored parts with watercolor pencils - but the paper didn't take water well and buckled slightly.  For this pose, he put on a black hat and soft ball necklace and she put on an umbrella hat.  And she really did have dyed shocking pink hair!

                        Scan10431.JPG

A ten minute pose, with one sitting and one standing - and in different costumes:

                      Scan10429.JPG

Both disrobed, but the male model wore his black hat and brown boots for the final 20 minute sketch.  I continue to have trouble fitting everything on the page when I'm working quickly (just one more thing to work on in 2010!), so you can't see his boots.

                         Scan10428.JPG

 

September 28, 2009

Paper and Threads Representations of a New York City Subway Mosaic

I was invited to applique a square for the Empire Quilt Guild 2011 Raffle Quilt.  All of the eighteen 11 inch squares are based on New York City subway mosaics and I was thrilled to be assigned the Chambers Street IRT mosaic of Kings College.  We are a Columbia University family and Kings College was the original college which became Columbia University after the Revolution.

I was gvien an applique pattern that was drafted from a photo in a NYC subway book, but decided that I wanted to make my own.  I photographed many of the mosaics which run along both the uptown and downtown platform walls trying to find one that wasn't too damaged by age.

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I drew and painted the mosaic in my daily sketchbook, to try to familiarize myself with the complex design before making a new pattern and selecting fabrics.

                  EQG1.jpg

I just completed the applique square - which required more time than any single 11 inch square I ever made - mostly because I decided that I wanted to applique every stone of the building on individually! 

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September 16, 2009

Big NEWS!

I retired on July 1st and last night finally went to my first Figure Drawing session.  If you follow this blog, you know that I was practicing for this moment by sketching figures as 90 sec. sketches of posemaniac images, or 5 minute figures from one of two nude figure photo books for artists that I bought.  I'm very glad that I did the prep work over the last several years because I never felt overwhelmed last evening.

I met my dear friend Istar at the Society for Illustrators so I would be with someone who knew the location and process.  The setting is lovely - very open space, live music, a small bar for a glass of wine during the 20 minute break, and hundreds of inspiring illustations lining the walls on all floors.  We had two models - one short and full figured, the other tall, thin, and beautifully coifed.  I frequently couldn't see below their ankles, but on the short poses, I didn't even have time to worry about it.   

The 3 hours flew by - and I did all 19 sketches - 2, 5, 10, and 20 minutes in length.  I'm just so thrilled to finally sketch live models that I'm uploading a total of 7 to this page.  All of the sketches were done with a Koh-i-noor Progresso 6B pencil  on 8 x 11" paper in a Working Class Studio, bound, sketchbook that I bought for half-price at Barnes and Noble.  I have no idea where I got the pencil, but it was smooth and wonderful on the paper. 

Two of Ten 2 minute sketches:

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Two of four 5 minute sketches:

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Both 10 minute sketches:

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Two of three 20 minute sketches: 

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20min.91509.jpg

September 13, 2009

Central Park Sketching Meetup Group

Today the group met at John Lennon's Strawberry Fields Imagine Mosaic and then walked to a rocky promontory on the Lake.  I stayed for 2 hours and did the following sketches - in bright sunshine.  It was a glorious day after a gray rainy Saturday

There were two turtles on a rock in the green-brown water - and I could just see their silhouettes.  In front of me, at the edge of the rocks were purple flowers that I had never seen before.  I spent most of the first hour watching for more turtles.

                       'Turtle.Flowers.jpg

Aprroximately 5 minutes before we met to share our sketchbooks, I quickly sketched and painted the lovely woman sketching in front of me. 

                Elsa.jpg

During the second hour, I moved to the other side of the rocks, faced south, and sketched the Central Park South skyline.  I was very happy that I brought my watercolor pencils with me to quickly block in the trees.

Skyline.Sept13.jpg

I'm really enjoying the Meetup Sketching sessions.  Although you can work on one thing for the entire time, the goal of the session is to sketch quickly in several different locations - which both sets parameters for space and time.  And it is so much fun to see the work of others - who may have had different tools and paper sizes, but had the same scene to observe and document that you did.