Saturday, May 28, 2011

Off to sea...

MIA from Dhow © Sue Pownall 2011
aka not motivated to finish a drawing.

Dhow harbour, Doha. © Sue Pownall 2011
Yesterday, despite a huge art list of things I wanted to complete and start, I was not inclined to do anything and did not have any self-discipline. A last minute text message had me running away to sea, just for the afternoon, on a dhow. Despite the high temperatures there was a lovely breeze, so it was a great way to spend the afternoon.
Sunbathers in A5 sketchbook.
I tried to sketch some peps up on deck but they were all too young & active and would not stay in one place for long, so I abandoned my sketchbook.
Fun © Sue Pownall 2011
Dhows at Dusk © Sue Pownall 2011

Monday, May 23, 2011

Out of the handbag II

Ladies waiting and guys studying A6 sketchbook.
I realised that I haven't posted anything from my A6 sketchbook for a while, so above are sketches done during recent exams and from the ladies waiting room at the hospital.

Personal stuff:
Thank you to everyone who has sent me best wishes with my continuous headaches. I have a new doctor, a neuro-surgeon who wanted to find the cause rather than treat symptoms like last doc. So, I had another eye test, fine, then a very scary CAT scan, all clear. However, a spinal x-ray has show a problem with my neck. I am currently typing this wearing a neck-brace and have to have physio, in the form of traction ugh. I have been wearing the brace just a day and I have not had a single sign of a headache :D

Thursday, May 19, 2011

In the news!

Gulf Times, Time Out section, 18 May 2011

Detail from article. Gulf Times 18 May '11
Yesterday, my interview for the Gulf Times appeared in the paper. Originally, it was only supposed to be a few column inches, but to my amazement I was on the cover of the Time Out section as the cover story, and then there was a double page spread inside.

Detail from Section Cover. Gulf Times 18 May '11
To say I was/am amazed by such a big spread is an understatement. The lovely journalist, Usha Desai, has written the article so well, I want to publicly say thank you to her. Usha contacted me after seeing a forum post about my SketchCrawl raising funds for Japan, if you missed the post it's here.

Gulf Times caption says: Sue Pownall and fellow sketchers show off their drawings outside a cafe on the Corniche during the benefit drawing marathon for Japan organised last month.
You can read the interview from this link:

Finally, to quote artist Jenni Eden:
"See how the universe opens up such wonderful opportunities when you start concentrating on what you love!!"
I don't think Jenni is wrong.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Hot, hot, hot

Small Boab tree, A5 sketchbook, ©Sue Pownall 2011
Summer has arrived in the Gulf, and according to my taxi driver - and they are the people who know - midday yesterday was 46°C. However, when I ventured out after 4pm it had cooled to 42°C, but that was still too hot to sketch outside, so I went to the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA). It is a beautiful building, and I have posted photos of it before like this one over on my other blog.
Beautiful architectural detail inside MIA.
I went specifically for the special exhibition  The Golden Age of Dutch Painting, which finishes 6th June, and it was amazing to stand less than a metre away from Rembrandt portraits and other great paintings. After I'd admired the paintings, I sat in the gloomy exhibition hall and sketched the other visitors viewing the paintings.
Viewing Dutch Masters, A5 sketchbook ©Sue Pownall 2011
Next, I investigated a couple of the exhibit rooms, heading first to the calligraphy, but then headed outside to warm up. Note: Aircon is set to freezing here, so you need jumpers inside. Mathaf: Arab museum of modern art, has an extension building near MIA, so I walked across the garden to it. Amazingly, the temperature had dropped outside and when I spotted a beautifully architectural Boab tree I had to quickly record it - quickly because it was now sunset, and the cool was relative, so I couldn't stay outside too long. I love the looseness of my painting above and I am so looking forward to getting to Cuba (94 days according to the counter above) with its Caribbean colours and vegetation.
The Al-Riwaq Art Space looks like an aircraft hanger outside and is disparate against the beautiful gardens and building of MIA, however it has a great internal space for the two exhibitions told/untold/retold and interventions, both finishing at the end of this month. I am not a fan of video installations, however Sadik Kwaish Alfraji's made me stop, sit down and watch it. Also, I finally saw the installation by Lamia Joreige, whose talk I went to back in March, which I also liked and understood more for having attended the talk.
MIA from Al-Riwaq Art Space.
 What a fabulous arty day, both for viewing and creating, I need more days like this in my life!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Exhibiting on a train - the event photos

Khalifa's House Gate on display on the Trans-Siberian train.
Last month, I wrote that my drawing Khalifa's House Gate was being displayed on the Trans-Siberian train in carriage 9 for its six-day journey from Moscow to Beijing. I have just received the photographs of the event and wanted to share them.
The Trans-Siberian train on route to Beijing.
Admiring my drawing perhaps?

All images courtesy of KITCHEN projects, 2011

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Secret Garden

Secret Garden. Pen & ink. 380 x 260mm. © Sue Pownall 2011
Apart from a few tweeks here and there, this is now finished. Thank you everyone who made suggestions whilst it was still a work in progress and I was a little lost. This piece is a lot darker than my normal work, I wonder if that's due to my health. Below are some of the stages it went through to end up like this.

This drawing is for sale for $400 framed plus worldwide shipping. Paypal is used for payment. 
Despatched normally within 14/21 days of receipt. Please contact me using the CONTACT tab above.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Still a WIP

WIP Secret Garden ©Sue Pownall 2011
I have been suffering from lack of sleep and constant headaches for months now, this is my reason for not working on anything other than sketches. Despite new glasses, and wearing them while drawing, I am finding the headaches do not allow me to concentrate on the detail my work needs. However, yesterday I was interviewed by a local newspaper about my organisation of SketchCrawl here in Doha, and in the evening, looking at Secret Garden hanging neglected on the wall I started working it up some more. I worked on and off for about an hour and half before I had to give up. However, it is a stage nearer completion. The left shrub needs strengthening a little... BUT I still need to decide whether to add a tone to the wall and if so, to all of it or with a vignette approach. OR to leave it as it is. What do you think?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Gulf Jazz

Saxophonist ©Sue Pownall 2011

Light & movement.
Last Saturday, some friends and I went to the Gulf Jazz Festival held here in Doha. Although, it was very dark in the Grand Hyatt's ballroom I was determined to sketch: I've loved trying to draw musicians since the concerts in Turin last winter. First off I drew the stage before the first act started. Then, trying a new sketching technique I've got from the fabulous watercolourist Kris Wiltse, her sketchbook is here, I painted the musicians from the first act directly in watercolour without drawing first. Also they were painted without being able to see what I was doing either. The organisers used a blue and a yellow spotlight, hence the paint choice (see photo). In the second act I was listening to the music, when I realised the saxophonist was standing in the empty space of my first sketch, so I drew him in.
Portraits in blue. ©Sue Pownall 2011

Simply Sharjah Shots

Sky over Sharjah.
Carved Door.
Sharjah Corniche.
Above are some of the photos from my recent weekend in Sharjah, UAE. Finally below, not a great shot but one of my favourite stolen moments.