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April 25, 2014

The Need To Play

It is almost 5 years since I retired and one of my major concerns was finding friends who might share my interests - especially art.  I always loved drawing and wanted to learn to use watercolors and keep sketchbooks - especially travel sketchbooks.  And I'm delighted, as most readers of this blog know, that I found the best friends to share this newest passion. 

On Tuesday evening, Teri, Benedicte, and I decided to get together the following afternoon, around my dining room table, to play and "make something."  Pat is currently in Barcelona with Gwen Diehn - an honorary member of our group - making art all day, everyday, for 2 weeks.  Teri proposed that she could bring some supplies and we could try to make abstract figures from an article in the current issue of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine. 

From left to right:  Benedicte, Teri, and Me

ThreeArtists.size  

The article by Theresa Plas is called Abstract Figures - Building Layers with Tape Masks.  I usually avoid any process involving acrylics, but thoroughly enjoyed these several hours during which we made collage papers with Gelli plates, painted several layers with different artist tape masks, added collage, and then pulled out a figure from the paper with Sharpie Paint Poster pens.  All 3 of us enjoyed the process immensely - and just used whatever we had - making it a low stakes art experience.   

Here are our 3 paintings.  The phone camera changed the colors, but it hardly mattered because we were "just playing" and enjoying an afternoon together.

Benedicte:

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Teri:

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Mine:  Definitely the least abstract - but expected with my interest in figure drawing!

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April 21, 2014

Back to Figure Drawing

I love drop-in figure drawing at the Society of Illustrators, but missed it for months because of a conflict with my FIT class on Dye Painting Silk.  Here are my drawings from last week - it was so good to be back, at least during my Spring Break from my class.  All of the drawings were done on 12 X 18" paper and photographed instead of scanned.

For anyone who might be interested in the importance of figure drawing for artists, I recommend the very readable book called The Undressed Art:  Why We Draw by Peter Steinhart.  I bought it in the Museum Shop at the Metropolitan Museum of Art - and found it to be informative and a wonderful review of the topic. 

I recently enrolled for and watched a free Craftsy miniclass called Figure Drawing Atelier by Patricia Watwood and really enjoyed it.  

http://www.craftsy.com/class/figure-drawing-atelier/459?_ct=sbqii-sqjuweho-qbb&_ctp=459,1 

 

Two Minute Drawings #1

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Two Minute Drawings #2: 

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Five Minute Drawings: 

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Ten Minute Drawings:

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Twenty Minute Drawing:

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Twenty Minute Drawing:

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April 18, 2014

Picasso and Humpty Dumpty

This morning I went to Christies Auction House for the viewing of the upcoming auction items.  It is a great way to see art that is rarely on display since it usually goes from one private owner to another.  I went to see the upcoming exhibit of Prints and Multiples, but chose to draw a Picasso ceramic to remember my visit.  This is my photo of the 16.5" diameter plate.

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I love the simplicity of Picasso's lines and frequently copy them trying very hard to embed his techniques in my brain.  My drawing was done with a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen.

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 I forgot that there were several hundred artist eggs placed around New York City and found dozens of them displayed around the Rockefeller Center Skating Rink as I walked to Christies.  The "Big Easter Egg Hunt" in NYC is sponsored by Faberge, and the artists range from the famous, i.e. Jeff Koons to local public schools.  Here is my favorite egg.  

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It was done by the Prince's Drawing School and is signed by Prince William and Princess Kate. As I type this, the current auction bid for Humpty Dumpty is $16,000.

 

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April 15, 2014

Simple Pencil Portraits

We spent last weekend celebrating the Bar Mitzvah of Daniel who is one of our closest friends' grandson.  We met his grandparents in 1969, even before Daniel's father Ben was born.  His birth may be one of the factors which made us more ready to start our own family.

I did these 2 portraits on blank 3 X 5" cards with a disposable mechanical pencil that was in my purse - while listening and watching the service.  They are now collaged on a page in my sketchbook to highlight the lovely event.

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April 11, 2014

Recent Sketchbook Pages

My oldest grandson was singing in the Middleschool Choral Festival on Wednesday.  I arrived early and listened to each individual school practice and sketched the center altar in the church they were using for the concert.  I sketched in pencil, then Tombow black marker, and then added water with my waterbrush.

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Yesterday I went to see two exhibits with my friends Bendicte and Pat.  There is an amazing exhibit at Neue Galerie on Degenerate Art as designated by the Nazis and featured in Munich in an exhibit of the same name right before WWII. 

http://www.neuegalerie.org/content/degenerate-art-attack-modern-art-nazi-germany-1937 

Many of the works shown at Neue are done by my favorite German artists.  I sketched a sculpture by Ernst Barlach called  "The Reader."  It was considered "degenerate" because of the book which they considered the sign of an intellectual!

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On our walk up Madison Ave to lunch I found this beautiful bloom at the top of a trash can and took it to paint during while we ate.

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We spent the afternoon at the National Academy Museum seeing an exhibit by the famous Swedish Artist Anders Zorn.  His etchings and watercolors were brilliant and I'm posting photos, not sketches - which would have been impossible. 

http://www.nationalacademy.org/anders-zorn-swedens-master-painter/ 

A Zorn Watercolor (from my photo):  This also appears in the link I included.

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A Zorn Etching:

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