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July 1, 2016

Battery Park City and Riverside Drive NYC

Wednesday and Thursday were terrific art days this week.  I went to Battery Park City Wagner Park for part of the morning session on Wednesday, and painted yet another view of Pier A.  I love the building and really enjoy the challenge because of the multiple perspectives.

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In the afternoon I joined friends for figure drawing in South Cove - another one of the Park's art activities.  I haven't photographed the sketches yet. 

Yesterday I joined a small group from the Weekday Urban Sketchers group - first at Riverside Drive and 93rd Street, and then further south at Riverside Drive and 89th Street.  There was shade and a wall or benches at both locations, and a breeze off the Hudson River.  We had a delightful time drawing and talking at both locations.

 

Joan of Arc:  Riverside Drive at 93rd.  This is one of only 5 statues commemorating women in all of NYC. 

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Soldier and Sailors Memorial:  Riverside and 89th St.  My daughter owned an apartment overlooking the Memorial, and now my son owns it.  I've had experience drawing the top of the Memorial from their window while my grandchildren were taking naps.  My first drawing was in January 2006, almost when I started drawing and painting regularly.  And it was the same month I started my blog.  

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In 2010, when my son's boy Zach was taking his nap, I sketched the top again.  I remember being disappointed that 4 years of daily drawings hadn't changed my style very much. 

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Yesterday I sketched and painted the full Memorial from a bench on the plaza.  It was much harder than just painting the top layer!  Many times I've been with one or more of my 6 NYC grandchildren while they rode their bikes and scooters around the large plaza, so this was a real memory drawing for me! 

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June 28, 2016

Drawings From My Imagination

I struggle when drawing from my imagination and usually need a few random lines on a page or one small concept to expand.  Frequently I decide that my imaginary friend Axel is my focus for the page, and expand on one situation with my little moon creature.  This blog post has Axel admiring baseball caps, requesting more coffee and swimming laps.

I was very frustrated by our baseball cap wearing figure drawing model and decided to do some "deliberate practice" by drawing two guys in baseball caps.  I usually have trouble getting the head the right size and shape after drawing the hat.  And then Axel asked for one!  I need to design one to fit his head!

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 While watching my friend swim laps in the pool I wondered whether I could figure out how to draw Axel swimming.  These are my attempts.

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 While craving coffee, I decided to create a coffee-loving Axel. 

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June 23, 2016

Recent Figure Drawings

I love figure drawing, and always hope that regular practice is making my drawings better.  From May through October I go to Battery Park City weekly for Figure Al Fresco, which is held outdoors and the models clothed.  Several weeks ago we began our session with 10 one minute poses, and here my first four.  Although it is always hard for me to be certain, I really think that I'm getting better at catching these poses in a very short period of time.  This and the next drawing were photographed instead of scanned.

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I went to the Society of Illustrators last week with one of my out-of-town guests, and was very happy to be back.  These are some of my 5 minute, 10 minute, and 20 minute poses.

Five Minute Poses:

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Ten Minute Poses:

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Two Twenty Minute Poses:

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When I'm back at the Society of Illustrators I remember how much I enjoy this venue and two nude models posing simultaneously.  This time I sketched one of the models most of the time - because I liked her poses, and because of where I was sitting.  The SOI sketched were done with soluble graphite pencils.

 

June 20, 2016

My Sea Shell Obsession

We were back at the beach with our family this weekend, and on my early AM walk with my husband I found an Atlantic Deep Sea Scallop Shell, my 4th in 9 years!  And my husband almost stepped on it as we walked.  They are large and beautiful, deep orange red in color and very flat.  This is a happy me!

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I collect shells as we take our 2 mile morning walks - and most are the common midatlantic shell varieties.  My grandchildren  all learned how to identify them, and I stash the really good ones on a shelf in my daughter's garage.  On Friday my grand daughter Sydney and I bought a large jar to save some of these shells and she placed each of them perfectly.

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My newly found scallop shell went on the very top less than 24 hours later!!.  These are my two sketchbook pages for the weekend - the scallop shell and one of the planters around the pool. 

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June 16, 2016

Final Monotype Workshop at MoMA NYC

Tuesday was the final weekly Monotype Workshop at MoMA - all associated with their wonderful Degas Exhibit.  This was my 3rd visit to the workshop, and I wanted to draw more dancers. I scanned a drawing I did of my ballet teacher, resized it, and printed out several copies to take with me.  When I arrived at the workshop I cut out the image and manipulated it several times to make 3 prints and 2 ghosts.  Here is my original drawing - resized - and the cut-out which became coated with the Akua printmaking ink. 

 

 

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I inked the printing plate and used my cut-out to trace the image in the ink.  Then I used Q-tips to remove more ink and complete the drawing.  This is the first monotype off the printing press.  

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There was still enough ink on the plate to make a good ghost print, and I hope that I can rework the ghost  with ink marks, pastels, paint, or color pencils the way Degas did with his ghost prints. 

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Three Dancers:  I pressed the dancer cut-out on the inked plate 3 times and used the vague imprints to add additional marks in the ink.  I also got a great ghost print after this monotype was printed.

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For my final monotype I put my cut-out, which was now full of ink, on my plate and used a huge brush and additional ink to brush ink on the plate - with brushstrokes beginning on the cut-out and going to the edges of the plate.  I then carefully removed the cut-out and put the plate through the printing press.

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The Museum of Modern Art is a wonderful resource for artists and this collection of workshops were very well attended.  Thank you MoMA. 

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