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May 24, 2009

Every Day in May - 24

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This morning we went to the Boat/Duck Pond (officially called the Conservatory Water) in Central Park for coffee.  While I sketched, my husband read the NY Times.  The refreshment stand is open this year and there are tables, chairs, and umbrellas on the patio.  There were owners and dogs at tables adjacent to ours, so I quickly sketched them and then my husband's cap above the newspaper.

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Then I discovered the ornamental poppies that were in bloom - and they were so magnificent that I had to draw and paint one bloom and one bud before we came home.

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May 23, 2009

Every Day in May 23

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We love holiday weekends in New York City - because it is relatively quiet - emphasis on the word relatively.  It never seemed like fun to join the masses escaping this island on Friday afternoon and trying to get back on the island on Monday evening.  This year we decided to explore some of the areas of Central Park that we rarely visit.  Today we walked up the Eastside of the Park to the Harlem Meer which is at the Northeast Corner.  While my husband did the Saturday NY Times crossword puzzle, I did a sketch of the Dana Discovery Center - an educational center where children can also participate in "Catch and Release Fishing" in the Harlem Meer with rented poles and instruction and bait provided by the Center.

I painted the front entrance to the Center but somehow made it much more squat than it really is.

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Did you know that Central Park (843 acres) is the first major public park built in America?  A competition for the design was held in 1858 and it took 18 years to build it in accordance with Frederick Olmstead and Calvert Vaux's plan.  There are 50 miles of pedestrian paths, so we will never run out of new pathways to explore.

 

May 22, 2009

Every Day in May - 22

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We picked up my grandson from nursery school, had a picnic in Central Park, and then went into the Met to see the newly reopened American Wing.  Before it was closed for renovation, my grandchildren learned about pennies and fountains in that space and we really missed the pool.  

 There is a newly designed pool in the same place, this time with two fountains.  This is a quick sketch of the back of the Frog Fountain - done while my grandson was throwing pennies.  There are three frogs spewing water around the base - but I had no time (or space) to sketch them on this visit.

The sketch was done with a watercolor pencil and the water was added later at home.

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May 17, 2009

Every Day in May - 17

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I spent this morning at the new "Model as Muse" exhibit at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  I was a seamstress most of my life and love to see construction techniques and elegant fabrics in couturier clothes.  I was less interested in all of the information about the supermodels, but some of the large photographs were wonderful.  The lighting for the exhibits was great, but it was almost too dim in front of each to sketch. 

The entrance to the exhibit is a display of Dior's dress for Dovima as immortalized in a photo by Avedon.

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I sketched  a few other garments that I liked, and imagine that I will return to draw some of the other exhibits, especially all of the mannequins in one room that are hanging from the ceiling.   

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May 16, 2009

Every Day in May - 16

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I had breakfast with my friend Istar and then we joined the Meet-Up Central Park Sketching and Art Group at the Central Park Conservatory Garden at 5th Ave and 105th St.  This was the first time that either of us attended, and in spite of the earlier rain, the time there was delightful. 

This group selects an area, everyone sketches for 30 minutes, and then gets together to put all of their sketchbooks next to each other for everyone to see.  It is wonderful to see what others choose to sketch - and how many interpretations there are of the same spot.

I sketched a fountain during the first period, and may still paint it.

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The flowers in the gardens were wonderful, and irises were a topic on several blogs this week, so I had to paint one.

                     

 

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During the 3rd and final period I sketched a large fountain with three dancing girls - overly ambitious for the time period we had.  I did finish a pencil sketch, but it didn't scan well and is on a double page spread with a wide shadow on the scan over the center fold.  Although I could work on the scan in Photoshop, I'd rather return to the garden to draw them again over the next few weeks.

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