Monday, May 31, 2010

EDiM - The End. # 31

#31 -  Draw something you collect - elephants.
There is a family tradition of collecting elephants as my nan had a couple from her trips to South Africa. My mum has a few around and I have lots. I bought the first ones, an onyx mother and baby, in India as a small souvenir. They are no higher than 5cm and bought to go in my backpack without adding too much weight. The last one I bought was in South Africa and was my first African elephant. This one is the latest and was a gift from my trainees.

That's EDiM completed a bitter-sweet month with some good results, and very bad ones, but a very productive one however I view it. The only day I have missed is number 24, draw a vegetable, which I still haven't bought anything for. As I am a type-A personality, I will get it done this week. Right is my Every Day in May list complete with highlights for weekends, notes for the posts and watercolour from cleaning my brushes.

I would like to thank Liz for the suggestion we did the challenges and to everyone, especially fellow EDMs, for their support and comments.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

EDiM - #29 & 30

29 - Draw something architectural or anything else.
30 - Draw a chair or anything else you feel like.

Looking at some of the other EDiMs I realised that for Saturday's challenge I had the option of anything else, so whilst out on a fabulous day out yesterday I did a quick sketch of the people paddling in the Nile, sitting on the sand, and generally enjoying the afternoon.(right)  I added colour this afternoon (above).

As I drew a chair on Friday, this morning I draw one of my students, not sleeping but writing a test, for number 30.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Whilst watching tv

I was sketching whilst watching tv. I'm not sure why I left the pad on the angle I put it down on the sofa, but I did. It is A3, which is not a size I normally use to sketch on, so maybe that is the reason.

Very excitingly, we have just had a storm here in Khartoum. Only a little rain, but terrific thunder &  lightning. The air smells wonderful now. I love storms!!!!
Wet roads & sheet lightning.
 The sky lit up. It's 10pm, Awesome.

EDiM disastrous catch up

This morning I had planned to do the three challenges to get myself up to date. Getting up I realised I had forgotten to go to the veggie stall on the way home last night, so I didn't have anything to draw for #26 . No big deal, I could go out later and get something, so on to today's challenge #28 - draw an appliance. bah  I should have drawn something else as I certainly wasn't loose enough to tackle a fan, especially as I struggle with curves.

After abandoning it and having a calming cup of tea it was on to #27 - draw a book. I chose my Sudan guide book and my Arabic phrase book, as the alternatives were paperback novels. The phrasebook I bought before I went to Oman, 5 years ago, and is still barely used, although I am finally learning Arabic here in Sudan. The drawing is not too bad, but it needs more work, and I really can't be bothered.

I think I should give myself the rest of today off from the challenges, have something nice for lunch, and maybe do some sketching.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

EDiM - # 24 & 25

Last night I doubled up the challenge in order to catch up. I really wanted to do 24 & 26 together as there are some amazing fruit and veg stalls here in Khartoum, but it is just too hot to sketch outside. I took some reference photos on the way home, but they are not good enough to use; I think the bus was going too fast. I got this orange out of the fridge to draw for 24 and it rolled behind my glass of water creating fabulous colour distortians, so that is what I painted.

btw Despite taking the precaution of having a bottle of water next to me and the water pot apart, I still managed to dunk my brush in the drinking water. Is this due to my artistic side or just plain carelessness????

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

EDiM - #23 foot

I'm still behind on the challenges. I blame the weather! I was misinformed as it's averaging 48c and is not 44. I concede sitting outside drawing was a stupid idea on Saturday, but I like the result. This challenge I drew while I sat with my feet up after a nice evening chatting with a friend at OZone. I used a brown Staedtlar pen for this one on A4.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

EDiM - #22

Yesterday's challenge was to draw a piece of clothing, which I didn't do because of my museum drawing trip. Today, whilst my students were doing a weekly test, I drew a pretty young woman in a colourful dress. Unfortunately, I forgot my glasses and couldn't do any more to the portrait as it was giving me a headache, instead I did a quick coloured sketch of the beautiful dress fabric.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

EDiM - #20 version 2, #21 x4, and an urban sketch

#20 Version 2. My friend Naji is Nubian, perhaps the Nubian Pharaoh Taharka was an ancestor - his dad's, dad's, dad's and so on back to 664BC. He certainly has the same strong, handsome features, so who knows. I drew and painted this on site of the Nation museum this afternoon.
Photo of statue of King Taharka and my sketch.
#21 draws something old, antique or vintage - here are four antiques also sketched today at the National museum. All colour was added on site, although it was very difficult as the watercolour was drying on the brush. I believe it's around 44c, but there was a nice breeze, possibly from the Nile.
My 1st sketch of the day, of the Egyptian pharaoh Atlanersa 653-643 BC. I was a bit tight, but I think I got the scale right by including the sitting guard.
Next, a Roman bronze lamp, from when the Romans were in Sudan.
After drawing King Taharka, I went outside and did this very quick painting of the statue. It was so hot I could hear the voices of my Sudanese friends in my head telling me not to be so stupid. In my defense I was sat in the shade of a tree, as the photo shows.
 Finally, I drew some hieroglyphs from a doorway of Kuma Temple. This was done with one of the new coloured pens, which I discovered are not waterproof. 
Finally, a quick sketch whilst sat in an outside cafe where there were plastic bags of bread hung from a tree. At one point I had 5 boys looking over my shoulder, but I was rescued by one of the other customers shooing them away. Shortly afterwards, Naji arrived to give me a lift home and the sketch got abandoned.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Dad - Update I

I've been picking this up and putting it down all afternoon. I've lost count on the number of times I've erased the eyes & mouth. Also, as I rarely use pencil I have managed to smudge the base sketch until it's almost unseeable.ho hum. Definitely will put it aside now for a few days, and then see what I can do with it.

EDiM - #20 Dad: a start

Challenge number 20 is draw something "dad" in honor of Father's Day. Father's Day in the UK is 20th June this year, so this is a month early. I think this will take until then for me to be happy with it.

btw The dark mark on Nelson's eye is a bit of putty rubber oops

I'm a day behind on the challenges, today is the 21st, but as Friday is the weekend here, I hope to catch up later, so please pop back, if you can, to see my progress. Also, check the others participating in EDiM.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

EDiM - # 19

Today's challenge, to draw something you’ve made, was very difficult. Apart from currently living in a hotel, which means I have limited "stuff", I actually do not make things. I occasionally make dinner, a G&T, or a Pimms, none of which I can do here, but that is all. I do not make clothes, my own sketchbooks, or even cakes, so I was left with this... I made a cup-a-soup to go with my Greek salad that the chef made. I have now made a cup of tea, which I will not draw, and am going to think about tomorrow's impossible task.

Don't forget to check out everyone's challenges. A full list of participants can be found here on Liz Steel's blog.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

EDiM - not a musical instrument & #18

Challenge #18 is Draw the view from a window of your house, apartment, office, etc.. What a lovely change from all those objects. This view is actually what I see in the morning when I get up and look out of the window, so is my missing challenge 14 too. It's not the prettiest view with the huge electric pylon and the cemetery on the right, but some how I like the peace and quiet out there. First thing the road is rarely busy and in the distance I can catch a glimpse of the sun on the Nile.
For  Every Day In May on 17th May, as I have not had access to a musical instrument since the chance encounter in the park, I did a quick sketch from the cafeteria window at work. No Cathy I do not have a penny whistle in my suitcase.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

EDiM - #16

Challenge 16 is draw a favorite tool, very uninspiring in my opinion, anyway... With my new coloured pens I forced myself to do the challenge this afternoon and I drew this old corkscrew/bottle opener, which is a tool that is always in my suitcase. It is totally useless here in Sudan as it is a dry country. The other tools in my suitcase are penknife (Swiss Army mini sized), mag-lite torch and a pair of chopsticks. The chopsticks are carried as I learnt to use them in Korea and now use them at every opportunity, so I don't forget the techniques.

Challenge #17 is to draw a musical instrument, which is going to be impossible, so I will substitute something else. Therefore, tomorrow's EDiM will be a mystery, currently to me too.

We are now halfway through EDiM and I'd like to say thank you to all of you who have stopped by.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

WorldWide SketchCrawl #27

Spread of the first 2 sketches.
Another SketchCrawl day and another one alone. I didn't know whether to participate or not as I can't access the site here in Sudan, Check the SketchCrawl forum to find the work of other crawlers from today. Or the flickr group, which is where I will have to post. SketchCrawls are days of drawing around the city and were started in San Francisco by Enrico Casarosa in 2004.

I started the day doing a quick sketch whilst waiting for friends to pick me up. Across the road are two stalls for the ladies who sell peanuts etc., but unfortunately it was too early for them to be there. I spent the morning with 3 non-drawing friends and was not brave enough to get out my sketchbook, so my next drawing was of my lunch back in the hotel.

Next, I sat on the stairs and sketched the emergency exit; I hope there isn't an emergency as it will be difficult to get out. It is very, very hot today (around 43c), and I found I couldn't sit there for long. I'm not sure why the cleaners have left a partially filled bin-bag in their mop bucket, but it made a more interesting subject.
Finally, I just popped to the supermarket and sat on a shop step - ouch it was hot - and did this 5 minute sketch of two peanut/seed/henna sellers sitting beside the road. It was still too hot at 7pm to draw any longer. My Crawl has finished where it started with these street stands.

EDiM #15 and some coloured pen sketches

Swapping my  EDM challenges around, I did number 15 Draw a tree or trees, leaves or branches today, instead of 14's what you see in the morning when you get up. Above is my loose interpretation of this challenge as I am getting a little bored of drawing objects. I was sat in OZone cafe (for the 2nd time that day) waiting for friends and drew the buildings across the road, framed by palm branches and the bushes of the garden. I started with the phone aerial as that is what first caught my attention.

When studying the buildings here, you notice that nothing is square... balconies on the same floor tilt in different directions. Floors are built up at different times and are also on different angles, but only slightly. Makes everything look slightly off when you draw it. Oh well, that's what urban sketching is about I guess. 
 Friday's first sketches were done with my new coloured pens whilst waiting for a friend to have lunch. OZone is a great space to draw, with lots of people to watch. I'm pleased with the way I suggested the fat man's form without actually drawing an outline. The lady on the left had fuchsia pink glasses, but the rest of her was a drab brown. Were they her touch of rebellion or individuality?

Once again, I apologise for the quality of the pictures on my blog, but I do not have my scanner here and have to rely on my camera.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

EDiM - # 13

I drew the hotel phone last night. I intended it to be just in line, but did the shadow and then just continued. Every time I use the phone it amazes that someone would bling a utilitarian object like this by adding a shiny blue bead.

My first courses, here in Sudan, have just ended and among the farewell gifts is a set of Staedtler coloured pens - think I shall go out later and test them out. Look out for some coloured pics later.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

EDiM - artistic license with #12

Number 12 is draw what you ate for dinner. Now Liz (here) and Alissa (here) actually painted what they were eating, but my spaghetti came over-cooked and a nasty uniform orangy colour, so I didn't want to eat it let alone draw it. Instead the fresh orange juice, which was delicious and came in a round/square glass, cried out to be painted. Therefore, I'm using the artistic-license card and submitting this as my painting for today's challenge.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Early morning sketch & EDiM #11

Sat in the bus outside the hotel, waiting for the other passengers, I was inspired to sketch the 2 security guards. Sadly, the others arrived before I could draw too much detail. On the right, is the guard hut where, in 2 months, I have never seen a guard as they always sit alongside it. On the left is the hotel bus.

Anyone who knows me, knows I am not a bling wearing person. However, last year I arrived in Italy without my sunglasses and this was the best (of a bad lot) that was available in Rome duty-free. A little worrying is the fact I am still wearing them. I think this challenge is sooooo boring as a consequence I didn't spend long on this painting and it shows.

Monday, May 10, 2010

EDiM - # 8 a watch & # 10 hand

I've been sick the last two days, but as I do not want to get too far behind on the challenges, I combined these two. Unfortunately, I was really not in the mood to draw, I totally bodged the composition, then the phone rang and I had to move. After the call, I couldn't be bothered to continue, so I took a quick photo, which is a strange colour,  and posted for all to see. Let's hope I'm in a better frame of mind for tomorrow's glasses.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

EDiM - #9 Organised chaos (2 versions) & Ozone people

I have swopped challenges 8 & 9 as there were good opportunities today. Looking out of the window I saw some construction guys removing tape from a building, eight and nine storeys high: a perfect example of organised chaos.
Then version 2 is of my rubbish bin as the cleaner doesn't come on Friday and had got filled with plastic bottles, T-bags and tissues. I don't normally drink Pepsi, but when I came home from my dance class on Thursday I was desperate for some sugar aka false energy.
Finally, whilst waiting for friends in Ozone last night I tried to draw some people, but it was a bit too dark to see what I was sketching.

I am very pleased as I have completed the day's challenge (twice) and it is only 10am, so I better getting on with my marking, which is what I have been putting off.

Friday, May 7, 2010

EDiM - # 7

Another uneven drawing... I must practice curves and getting opposite sides even. Anyway, today's challenge is to draw a bottle, jar or tin from the kitchen, which is difficult as my "kitchen" consists of a kettle, fridge, & sink. The solution, room service delivered a tin dome food cover with my noodles and above is my response to the challenge.

EDiM - # 6 well-loved object

This was a difficult challenge as I am away from home and traveled with only 20ks of luggage plus hand luggage. Here, I no longer love my laptop as it is dying on me; won't connect to the internet, battery won't hold its charge etc. Even if I was at my parents, most of my things are in storage after being shipped from Oman or already stored in their attic.

I decided to draw this object as an ironic take on the theme as I guess it was loved enough by someone to be brought to decorate my hotel room, but I think it is horrible. To appreciate how dreadful this is imagine a lopsided bottle covered in rough plaster except for an odd shape in the middle where the clear-glass can be seen. The plaster has been painted blue and white with glitter randomly applied. Inside it is filled with water, a bit of chicken-wire and plastic leaves. Around the neck are random plastic leaves and balls, ribbon, string and a bottle top, although it's sealed. Bet you are jealous you haven't got one!

Being self-critical, whilst looking at the picture this morning before posting, I see my drawing has not been accurate. I have made the neck too short and even though it is lopsided, I have not accurately got the shape. There's another bottle to be drawn today for #7, I think I shall have to concentrate harder on the initial drawing and not to be in such a hurry.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

EDiM - # 4 & 5

As I will be very busy today, I cheated last night and drew challenges 4, a mug, and 5, a bed, together. The mug is a very boring white one, but the only one I currently have access to in my hotel. I wanted to draw a flower bed for today, but I do not think I will have any spare time.

Don't forget to check out the other fab artists participating in EDiM, there's a list on my last post.

Monday, May 3, 2010

EDiM - #3 & USk theme - construction.

EDM drawing #3 took a long time... I was not inspired by today's challenge. My best excuse is that I got a bad case of hiccups and couldn't draw, but I refused to give up on EDiM on day 3.

After the hiccups, I sketched the scene above from the bedroom window (9th floor), of a concrete delivery at the construction site just up the road. I found the perspective difficult from this height, but as it is over 40c outside this is the easiest way to sketch during the afternoon. This was drawn for the USk theme of this week.

Before that I had completed my IF illustration Cocoon, and afterwards I popped to the supermarket, had a chat with Sami (a very cute Eritrean guy) and then finally  I drew the challenge. It is my work handbag, which is big enough not only to carry my purse etc. but also my diary, camera, moleskin and various pens.
I recommend you check out the others participating in Everyday in May. They are:
Liz flickr or blog
Alissa flickr
Wendy (QuirkyArtist) flickr or blog
Jennifer Blog flickr
Sandy blog or flickr
Deborah blog
Margaret blog
Anna blog
Marthann blog
Yasemin blog
Carol blog
Anita blog flickr
Matthew flickr
Johanna blog

& finally me.

100th Post!!!! IF - Cocoon

When I started this blog in September I never imagined that I would reach 100 posts so quickly. What shall I do to celebrate... Hmm  guess I should draw something for today's EDiM. In the meantime, here is my picture for Illustration Friday.
Despite the challenging quote provided with this week's topic, I thought I would stick with a traditional cocoon image, which matches my drawing style. This is the quote:
A child-like man is not a man whose development has been arrested; on the contrary, he is a man who has given himself a chance of continuing to develop long after most adults have muffled themselves in the cocoon of middle-aged habit and convention. ~ Aldous Huxley
The other reason is that I have neglected one of my art-based resolutions for this year which was:  
"Do what I love ...I would like to focus on getting better at... pen & ink".

I found the great reference photo of a Monarch Butterfly on:

EDiM - #2 Lamp

For the 4 months I'm working in Khartoum, I am staying in an apartment hotel. This bedside lamp has to be the ugliest thing in the apartment and cried out to be painted for challenge number 2.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Osman smoking shisha

Yesterday I had the best day out! I was taken south of Khartoum, by some of my trainees and their friends, where we had a picnic beside the Nile. At one point Osman smoked some shisha and I did this quick sketch in my moleskin, that always is in my bag.
Osman is in the middle of this group picture.
Me beside the White Nile