Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Finally, new work

Storm over the Saltings.
Storm over the Saltings.
33x23cm Ink & watercolour

Monday, October 27, 2014

Brazil: o fim

Igreja Nossa Senhora do Remédios, Paraty.
The day after the symposium, the amazing Brazilian sketching group, Croquis Urbanos Curitiba, had a arranged a last sketch meet. I finished my concertina sketchbook at the meeting point then walked around the corner to sketch the largestest of Paraty's churches, Igreja Nossa Senhora do Remédios, which had been decked out in banners for its festival. Despite my wibbly perspective I'm pleased with the result.
 More goodbyes as the Croquis Urbanos Curitiba left to catch their flights, and I went to sketch more of Paraty. First up the church, Capela Nossa Senhora das Dores, which I didn't draw on Norberto's workshop.
Capela Nossa Senhora das Dores
Next, I made a study of the low tide.
Finishing the day where I started, I drew the people gathering for mass in the church of Nossa Senhora do Remédios.
Mass in Igreja Nossa Senhora do Remédios.
 Sadly, I was leaving Paraty and Brazil the next day. I took a pre-breakfast walk, savouring the sunrise.
Adeus Paraty
After breakfast in the pousada, I finally got around to sketching their amazing entranceway full of plants as  my last Paraty sketch.
Pousada do Sono
However, I made a last, last sketch whilst waiting for the Rio bus.
That brings me to the end of my Brazilian adventure. 

Any thoughts or comments, please leave them below. Thank you.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Brazil Part 6 Saturday

Line flow tree.
For the last workshop of the symposium, I took Norberto Durantes' workshop Line Flow/Live Spot as I really enjoyed, and learnt a lot, last year. A bonus was not only the sun was out but I got to draw with Kumi and Simone, so it was a great morning.
Line flow people.
Exercise 2 hmmm
 The last exercise was to add a pop of colour to our line work. Everyone sat and drew the church, but I turned my back and tried to capture the sandbanks. A horse & cart literally trotted into my view so I grabbed a pencil and added it (minus the man loading sand). Out of time, I was undecided about the pop of colour and added the yellow back in the UK.

Great informal photo of our workshop crit. by Kumi
 After lunch, I did Richard Alomar's activity Unfolding a sketching story, which was really inspiring and fun. I used the Laloran concertina sketchbook, but couldn't complete it in the allocated time, so did so on Sunday morning.
Rua do Comercio
1st page detail. (more on flickr)
After the activity it was time to sketch and gather for the final group photo in Matriz Square. I'm guilty of not sketching, but chatting to everyone I could and taking photos with friends. There was just time for a Caipirinha before the closing reception, which in true Brazilian style ended up with dancing.
With new Brazilian friends
With friends old and new
Closing reception, Brazilian style!
 I don't think any of us wanted the symposium to end and I joined a group for icecreams, but didn't go on for the late night drinks.
Icecream. Photo by Liz
 I was sad the symposium was over, but there was still more drawing to be done the next day... but that's for another post.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Brazil!!! Part 5 Friday in Paraty

Reflections. Super5 pen & watercolour in moleskin
 Friday had a different format this year, which I liked. A workshop in the morning then lots of activities or talks to choose from in the afternoon. I had chosen Matthew Brehm's workshop as I admire his watercolours and it was on Sketching Fundamentals. It started well, but I got off with the wrong attitude on the first exercise when we where sent to do something and I spied 2 boys up a tree... I quickly sketched them then tried to add in what I as supposed to do. (sorry can't get decent scan or photo)
We did a couple more exercises and then Matt gave a long demo. It was interesting, but I was itching to do more sketches and clock watched until the end of the workshop. I am pleased with my portrait of João drawn as he was listening.
Pencil in casa do artista sketchbook.
After a quick lunch break with the lovely Orling (drawingbythepound), I went to capture my own version of the King tide in the streets. (top) Next, it was back to the Casa do Cultura for talks by Simone Ridyard and then Gaby Campanario. I wish Gaby's talk had been longer as it was so informative - sketch reportage is something I want to get into - and he has a great story telling technique. Night fell quickly in Paraty, so then it was on to a demo by the brilliant Brazilian artist Ivonesyo Ramos. He is very charismatic and despite some drops of rain did an impressive nightime painting, which I bought in the silent auction.
Ivonesyo Ramos painting in the dark.
Finally, I went to a talk/demo by the sponsors PEN.UP where I did my first ever digital sketch on a tablet. it wasn't great, but I can see future experiments with this medium (when I buy a tablet).
All in all it wasn't the my most productive day on my part, but I got lots from it.
Next post is the final day of the symposium...

Monday, October 20, 2014

Granary Square, N1

Fountains, Super5 pen & watercolour in A4 sketchbook
 Yesterday, I joined the Drawing London on Location meetup group for a day drawing around Granary Square, just north of Kings Cross, which was held in collaboration with the new House of Illustration.
I enjoyed the day, and it's a very interesting area, but feel I could have got better results. Here are some of them. 
The Book Barge. Soluble ink & watercolour A4 sketchbook
Musicians on The Book Barge, watercolour A4
Train people on route to London, A6 Laloran sketchbook
 What did you do yesterday? 

btw. The next post will be another from Brazil. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Brazil!! Pt.4 Thursday in Paraty

Trying wide-angle perspectives with Paul Heaston.
Having attended last year's symposium, I was not as nervous before my first workshop, but still at little bit. It was with Paul Heaston, whose work I really admire. Paul had almost finished his demo when the heavens opened. We took over a nearby café/restaurant and got out our new sketchbooks given by the Brazilian sponsor: casa do artista
 The workshop was on drawing wide-angle perspectives, and whilst I understood Paul's great handouts and explanations, unlike normal perspective I couldn't "see" it. Hence, among many errors my pad and and feet are too small in this first attempt.
1st attempt at wide angle perspective
With a break in the rain, I went outside for my 2nd drawing, and whilst I had to take cover twice from more showers, I am pleased with the result. (Top). I really enjoyed this workshop and (with cheat sheets in hand) shall try this method again. 

Surrounded by the tide!
After a too short lunch break, it was on to Liz Steel's workshop "Feeling the edges – a tactile approach to sketching architecture". Despite the freezing cold, the wind was icy cold, and being cut off by an amazing full-moon tide (I believe they are called King tides), which flood the streets of Paraty. It was very interesting and fun. We did lots of mark making and an exercise which involved careful measurement of proportions, before we could then take a more tactile approach.
How many windows???? An exercise in Liz's workshop
The last exercise. Photos by Liz
In the brief Liz said "Trusting your own personal response to a building is far more important when sketching architecture than achieving absolutely accurate proportions or perfect perspective", but I seem to have lost the point when working on my final drawing. I'll blame the cold.
At the end of the workshop.
 Looking at the sketch later in the Pousada, I added the sky, then colour in an attempt to get something nearer the aim of the workshop - should have left it alone, I think. Oh well, it's all about learning.

Heading back for more clothes prior to dinner, I heard drumming and went to investigate. There was a drum class in a building and I stood in the doorway and sketched - my own personal response :) I am starting to doubt using the urban sketcher title, as I do tend to draw people and objects without their setting. I guess that's something to think about as I always struggle with the situational part of people sketching.
Drum school
 By the time the drumming stopped, it was time to meet the others for dinner, but couldn't find them. Luckily I ran into Omar and joined him and Norberto at Quintal Verde. I started the sketch below, but a group of people came and sat blocking my view. Later, we were joined by Rita, which is one benefit of a smaller location in that you could normally find someone to eat or drink with.
 So that was all from the Thursday. Friday was another full day, which I will leave to my next post.

Please leave your comments below, as I love to hear your thoughts.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Brazil!!! Part 3 Wednesday in Paraty

After the long, long bus ride I arrived in Paraty at 6pm. At 8pm I joined Brazilian sketcher, Flávio Ricardo, in sketching a theatrical performance of Paraty's history. Afterwards, I discovered 5 other urbansketchers had been drawing in the dark. What a great way to start the symposium. 
Sketching in the dark.
 The next morning I had to find an atm and walked past this lovely yard, which I wanted to sketch, but took a photo until I could get back,which I sadly didn't :(
Money issues resolved, I headed into the old town of Paraty to explore. The grey horse of the photo became my 1st subject. I prefer to draw animals in pencil (I know I'm always sketching Degas in ink but... I'm an artist) unfortunately the blue pencil I grabbed won't scan or photograph well.
1st Paraty sketch

The poor horse had it's ears back most of the time as it seemed unhappy with where it was stood, except in the photo. Moving on I turned the corner and found a whole load of sketchers.  (hmm I wonder what the collective noun is as it's a misbelief of painters  and a colony/enclave of artists, but what about sketchers? Any suggestions please leave it in the comments below.) Despite being happy with my horse sketch, I was very slow to start sketching, catching up with friends first, and the perspective is very off due to my lack of concentration. Still, it was fun to be sketching in a group already.
Pousado do Sandi
Photo from symposium sponsor PEN.UP
Then it was time for tea with Liz. See her amazing tea sketches on her blog: www.lizsteel.com
Liz was the only one to sketch whilst the rest of us chatted, drank our tea and shared sketchbooks.
Photo from Liz Steel.
Finally, it was time to register for the symposium. Last year we registered the day the workshops started, but this was a great change, one I hope is continued in future symposiums, and was followed by a sketchwalk. It was quite cold and overcast at the location and I joined some of the Croquis Urbanos - Curitiba who had sensibly found a bar with some shelter to sketch in.

Testing out the new Super5 pen
 After an aborted building attempt (above), I started to sketch the sketchers in Refúgio Restaurant. Later that evening I continued in Café Pingado.
The first Sketchwalk sketchers. Can you see me?
Don't forget to leave suggestions for the collective noun of sketchers.