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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A quiet day in Inverness

Two more pages from my trip - Vol 4 which I am scanning at the moment.
What I like about travel journals is the combination of things- maps, bits and pieces, food and views... and of course cups of earl grey tea and scones!!!
0826 TH_01 Islands Inv Map

A wee sketch from a walk around the Ness Islands (while sitting in the sun) and then a combo map of all the things I did in Inverness during my week

0826 TH_02 Glen Moriston
I stopped for a cup of tea and then stayed for lunch it was so nice sitting in the sun!!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Current Sketching Tools

what I carry with me every day changes from time to time... but this is the current collection.
Current sketching Tools

Because I am left handed - from Right to left
- Watercolor kit. Schminke tin with a combination of winsor and Newton and Daniel Smith Watercolour. I always try to use the mixing areas for the colours as shown in this photo.
- Lamy Joy pen (this is a calligraphy pen - older model - the new model is a fraction heavier) with EF normal nib. I love the balance of the longer tail) Noodlers Bulletproof Black ink
-#6 Raphael sable travel brush
- 0.5mm clutch pencil with red lead (my latest craze and I am loving using this) I nearly always do a very quick pencil outline to get an idea of composition - however when I ink I often ignore it or correct it.
- Pentel pocket brush
- Pitt Colour pen Colour 188 Superfine
- White Gel pen
- Permanent 0.3mm felt pen (incase I run out of ink or to get other people to write in my sketchbook. Note. they sometimes ruin the nib!)
- 3H pencil - for ruling lines for my text... yes I don't naturally write that straight. I also have some guidelines which I can see through the pages.
- Retractable eraser. I rarely use this on location but occasionally I feel like starting again.
- Pentel waterbrush... try not to use this!
- Brand? #12 sable travel brush
- Art Basics #2 sable travel brush

ANd almost forgot
Small water container that I picked up in a hotel somewhere
And my black wristband for wiping/cleaning my brush

Saturday, November 27, 2010

101126 My Grandma's funeral

101125 The Drive North
Sketch from the back seat of my car on the way up my grandma's funeral. Not sure why I never got around to finishing this by adding the green to the passing scenery...
101125 Wauchope Railway Bridge
Wauchope Raliway Bridge - view at lunch time. A quick sketch... I eat very fast which means that I have time to at least start a sketch while the others are still eating....
101125 Nanna's Place
Trying not to think about the fact that this might be my last visit to this place... but I knew I just HAD to fnd some time to sneak away from the friends and family to do at least one sketch.
101125 My grandma's grave
We went back to my grandma's grave at the end of the day to check out what they did with the flowers - it was really nice to come back without everyone else... and of course I found it very calming to sketch while the others explored all the other relatives and friends buried nearby.
The side view was more interesting but I choose this view as it includes where my pa was buried as well. I hope to sketch the flowers from a photo later as they looked so nice in the afternoon sun.
As we left we saw 2 kangaroos hanging around- hope they don't munch on flowers!

The words in green are from the Westminster Shorter Catechism - something that I learnt as a child and expresses the thoughts that I had at the time.
101126 A great Port breakfast
The was a shortage of beds for everyone so I volunteered to stay in a B&B... so of course I sketched my breakfast!!! Amazingly the owner of the B7B was a Scot so we had a great conversation about places - made me feel like I was on my big trip again - except for the sun, warm weather and noise of cicadas in the background!
101126 A cup of Nanna's
A very nice cup that belonged to my Nanna.
Sometimes I find it hard to sketch when there is a lot happening at the time and I have a self imposed pressure in my head "This one has to be a good one"
Other times when I just go for it - the sketch often works better!
Thankfully I will have the chance to draw this again and do a better job.
101126 Trip Home
The trip home....Sometimes I really don't have time for a sketch... but that never stops me trying.
Also, I really dislike waterbrushes as it is so hard to get jiucy mixes on the I try to use traditional brush and with my wee water jar... but maybe a bumpy section of road was a good time to use a waterbrush!

Back in Sydney....
Friday night... a great Thai meal
101126 A Great Thai meal
Another attempt at drawing thai meals while out with friend/s. The food was SENSATIONAL!!!

Today, Saturday
101127 T2 without a sketchbook
At T2 without a sketchbook... but thankfully realised in time to rip out a few pages to take with me. I don't like the paper in Handbook books. Paper and card was a gift from a friend.
I do like having a few pages of collage in my books.

And to go back to my grandma- a page I did during the week
101124 A gift from Nanna (and Pa)
Was trying to find a gift or something that I had from my grandma...but couldn't find anything. And then I thought about my old bible... falling apart, the stickers down the side have LONG gone... but it was nice to see my Nann'as handwriting and some of my own attempts to write my name (funnily enough done in a brown pencil)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Earl Greys of Crows Nest 03-Coffee Culture

Next in my series...
Earl Greys of Crows Nest 03-Coffee Culture

Been here a number of times before. Although I am not necessarily rating these earl grey tea, this one will be had to beat – very nice loose leaf tea that seemed to stay hot for a while. Rushing today at lunch so only had about 30 mins to eat and sketch.

Now... for everyone that celebrates thanksgiving - I hope you have a wonderful day.

I am going away for two days to attend my grandma's funeral. She was 95 ... and very special. Hoping to get some time to do some 'Nanna sketches' in the coming days.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My favourite tree at my favourite time of the year

We don't get autumn colours in Sydney (well not in the native trees) but we do get the most gorgeous colours in November(which is our spring) when all the gum trees shed their barks. The most spectacular is the angophora - the old bark is a dull grey during winter. Trying to work out what happens- but it seems that the bark goes pink before it starts falling off and I think that this year because of all the rain it is pinker than usual. The brand new bark is yellow at first and then darkens to a rich orange... in December the tree will be all this amazing colour. These photos taken at 6.30pm in afternoon sun. I would love to sketch it but don't have the time this week- so photos it will have to be.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The most hip roof form???

A question for all architects out there (or anyone else who would like to contribute)...
101122 The most hip roof form???
I would like to know.... what you think is the coolest roof form?

I know that as architects the roof form should be a result of function and not an arbitrary form but I am finding that it seems to be very trendy to use a rounded rectangle form, turn down roof... what ever you call it. Is this a trend others have seen and what do you think of it? Any other very cool roofs of recent times would be appreciated. BTW this is a little tongue in cheek - I do have my own ideas but interested to hear from others.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

101120 A GREAT tearoom

101120 A GREAT tearoom
I did go to T2 teahouse the day I got back from my big trip and was rather jetlagged... so today was special as it was the first time I have had a good sketching session there since the big adventure. Trying to be a bit more adventurous with overall views and trying to capture the darkness of the place... so expect some experimental pages (I AM afraid of using areas of black in my sketches)
SO special to know the staff and to meet a new waitress today (Hi Natalie if you see this!!!!) After all the tearooms I went to overseas, this is still the BEST and so today was a realisation of how special this is to me.
BTW Grand Yunnan tea today and a brand new cup (released in the store opposite on Tuesday)
BTW2 if you are not aware- I made a blurb book of all of last years sketches in here....

Friday, November 19, 2010

Volume 3!

Ok... here s Volume 3 in full where I left the US for Scotland and ended up on the Isle of Lewis where my sister had just moved. Quite a different feel to some of these pages and it was good to do some more landscapes - I am definitely more comfortable doing urban landscapes...sometimes I was a bit over ambitious and I am happier with the small quick ones I did! I just loved Lewis and Harris and it was such an amazing contrast from NYC!
My Big Trip - Volume 3!!
BTW, if you missed my first two volumes they are here

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Earl Greys of Crows Nest 02-Crow Zone

Earl Greys of Crows Nest 02-Crow Zone
Here is the second in my series... as I wrote on the page I might find it hard to get decent detailed sketches done in my hour lunch break if staff/owners start talking to me like today... but of course I don't mind that at all ... it is a great way to meet some of the locals and a really fun way to fill my lunch break.
Also- just for the record... I don't expect to find many loose leaf superior brands of earl grey in the cafes/ restaurants of Crows Nest... in a way that is not really the point of the exercise. It is more about me getting out there sketching. (Though of course if I do find a good cuppa....I will be a happy little Vegemite)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Aberdour Castle out of Edinburgh

0814SA_02 Aberdour Castle

Just going through Volume 3 scanning away and was really struck by how relaxed I was when I did this... you can tell in the linework... total chill!!!!

Please check out Eza's sketch at the same time (borromini says" please do!!!" - I wonder why!?! Just maybe there is a sketch of him!)

Aberdour Castle- outside Edinburgh

101116 Sketching Diet Day 2

101116 Sketching Diet Day 2
This page answers the questions about my Licorice Legs - it is my favourite herbal tea.
I have an amazing ability to eat the same food day after day because I am lazy - maybe this sketching diet will change that...because I don't want to bore myself with the same food to sketch every day - or use up all my green paint in a week!
Also the record of my teas... I have to limit my intake to 3 cups of caffeine tea a day.
BTW, I am going back onto the Tony Ferguson Weightless Diet for a number of weeks (I lost 22 kgs in 4 months when I did it in 2008) - I am only sketching part of my food each at the moment...but who knows what I will do tomorrow! Not bothering too much with page layout - just doing whatever I feel like doing....

Monday, November 15, 2010

101115 Sketching to the rescue?

101115 Sketching to the rescue?
As most of you know I ate a lot of scones while in the UK and then a lot of gelato, pizza and pasta in Italy. As a result I want to lose a few kilos (not too dramatic but I want to keep within the limits I sent myself a few years ago) So... after struggling a little to keep to my plan in recent weeks I have decided to sketch my food this week (not going to draw everything I eat and I am certainly not going to bore you with posting every sketch I do) but I have to say that sketching your dinner is a great way to eat slowly and eat less. It is also a way to get some sketching in each night/lunchtime so I can get back to chores (or scanning - BTW, was nice to have last week off scanning but Volume 3 starts tomorrow!!!))

Saturday, November 13, 2010

101112 Getting back into the Groove

101111_12 StThomasPark
Since I started my new book on Tuesday (using one of my standard Daler Rowney Ebony books) and having a week off sketching... I am getting back into the groove. In fact this week was the first time that I got out every day during my lunchbreak and did a sketch - here are the 2 I did in my nearby park on two glorious late spring days... summer is finally here!!
St Thomas Rest Park, Crows Nest, Sydney

101112 LensCleanerColour (not Watercolour)
LensCleanerColour (not Watercolour)
Didn't have any water with me - the only liquid was my lens cleaner... so I used a bit of it! One of the things I love about Sydney is how many half views you get of the famous icons/ harbour
Balls Point, North Sydney
101112 Friday night dinner101112 Friday night supper
Friday night dinner and supper- as I said in my scribble notes- sketching Thai food when with friends is SO hard.... and although I sketch a fancy tea cup from time to time it is hard to do so when you are tired and with company - talking a lot!
101113 BotanicGardens01101113 BotanicGardens02
101113 BotanicGardens03
Nice morning in the Botanic Gardens...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

101111 Venice Sketch Therapy

101111 Venice Sketch Therapy
Isn't just Rome sketches that hit the spot for me... how about a magnificent Palace on the Grand Canal that was too hard to sketch on location....

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

101110 Post Trip Restlessness

101109 Roman Sketch Therapy
just a quick sketch from a photo from my recent time in Rome - done in 15 minutes late at night last night! Having a minor sketch crisis(more below) at the moment and this just really helped me... nothing like a bit of ROman sketch therapy!
101110 Post Trip Restlessness
This page is my just rambling about total trivia - not sure if anyone is interested but after 11 weeks of concentrated focusness... I am all over the place at the moment.... and for the record, I still have a post-trip high, I don't mind at all being back at work, love being back home... but just feel too busy and wish I could sketch more of normal stuff.
A bit strange how much fun it was to sketch my sketchbooks - even though the proportions and sizes are all over the shop and I really do not mixing black paint...

BTW just to clarify- the Rome sketchbook- bought form a lovely shop opposite the pantheon is a BEAUTIFUL sketchbook... it is just not working for me as a daily book. However, sitting open on my desk at work and being used for quick inspirational architectural sketches I see in books or magazines might just work better - first 2 days have been good.

Earl Greys of Crows Nest 01-Bean Drinking

Earl Greys of Crows Nest 01-Bean Drinking
Starting a new series in an attempt to
1. get me out of the office more at lunchtime
2. sketch what I enjoy sketching during the week
3. break this silly attitude 'there is nothing much of interest in Crows Nest to sketch' (of course translated to post-big-trip-Liz-talk this is 'there is no baroque buildings around!?!')

Anyway, the plan - treat myself to lunch out once a week and try any eating place in Crows Nest that serves Earl Grey on the hot beverage menu.

Had fun today although was a little pushed for time and couldn't utilize my full hour break.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Volume 2 is here!!!

Volume 2
On a long trip like mine, the first Volume is a kind of a warm up. This, my second (of 8) sketchbooks, marks the start of a true liz-type-adventure... trying to do a LOT and sketching as much as a number of meetings with online friends.

If the above embedded issuu doesn't work the link is Inside Volume 2
And here is an image of all the pages in one go!!! What a lot of ink and paint!!

Time in Kansas City

I haven't posted any of these.... but here are my sketches from a WONDERFUL day in Kansas City with Kate Johnson, her husband Joseph and Vicky Williamson!!! I still can't believe I made it to KC and met them all. Thanks K, J & V for a wonderful day!!!
0804WE_01 SavoyBreakfast
0804WE_02 ArchSavage1
0804WE_03 ArchSavage2
0804WE_04 Bookstore View
0804WE_05 KC Tearoom

Friday, November 5, 2010

Another Portland Sketch

0802MO_05 Another Portland Sketch
working my way through Volume 2 scanning - here is another SUPER quick sketch I did on my last day in Portland when I was on my own. Pity I did not have more time to do a more careful sketch of this building - or many others too!

101105 Friday Night restlessness - yellow theme

101105 Friday Night Restlessness - yellow theme
A somewhat crazy and unplanned page - expressing a certain restlessness tonight. I am missing sketching a LOT and need to get a few things in my normal life into balance. I think the mammoth scanning task is a bit of a burden - I know there is no rush to get it all done but I am a bit uneasy till I have a digital record of the originals. Think of how much MORE sketching I would produce if I didn't have this scanning time to schedule in... but then that would generate more is a neverending cycle. Maybe I should just start knitting again (after all the cricket season has started!) BTW I haven't actually scanned or posted most of my daily sketchbook pages since I got home!

I might try to work my away around the colour wheel to find some different objects to sketch... so I just might do something orange next... is that an excuse to visit T2 tomorrow or buy another orange box of tea? - no Liz no!

BTW the little fellow is another one of Borromini's friends - silly magnet animal with no body. Purchased a few years ago at Timbertown in Wauchope NSW Australia. The yellow bag is nearly 20 years old - cant be that old...well lets say over 10 years old!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Volume 1 is uploaded!!!!

Well here it is – Volume one of my big Long Service Leave Trip! (only 7 more to go!)
It represents the first 10 days (of my 80 days around the world) - time in Seattle with friends and then the Symposium

During my trip this was the least favourite of my sketchbooks. I think the main reason is because I wasn’t in control of what I sketched as much as I was for the rest of the trip (when with my friends in Seattle we were VERY busy and sometimes didn’t have the time to sketch what I would have liked(still managed something tho!) and at the symposium I was sketching things I might not normally choose to sketch.)

BUT since coming home, finishing off a few pages that I didn’t like, adding some notes and collage and generally re-living the excitement of the Symposium etc I have become a lot more attached to it. There are numerous stuck in pages - these don’t translate very well on issu. I did TRY the special USK moleskine but it wasn’t working for me, hence you will see that I cut the pages out of the book and stuck them in here.

Queen Marys Tearoom Seattle

0724SA_01 Queen Mary Tearoom

here is my over the top sketch of a great tearoom which was very over the top... the first place I visited in the USA!
BB at Queen Marys Tearoom
If you are interested my friend took a video at the time and you will get to see me (funnily enough talking with my awfully strong Australian accent about my bear!)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

101102 Mahler instead of Melbourne Cup

Today 'the nation' stopped for a horse race but I do believe that there was a good number who stopped to listen to Mahler Symphony 5 instead. I was one of them!!

101102 Mahler instead of Melbourne Cup

I have become hooked on listening to the Classic 100 countdown on Classic FM radio and made the most of the boys in the office watching the race in the other room to pull my ear plug out of the little radio we use for the cricket(tragically mono!) to listen to the 4 and 5th movement of this magnificent symphony.

Since listening to the countdown I have realised how much I have been missing out on by my limited classical music listening in recent years (I tend to listen to a few over and over again)
I will try to sketch some of my classic 100 moments during the remainder of the countdown....

Tonight - Brahms with my evening cuppa
101102 Brahms with evening cuppa

I am using the countdown to check my collection on my ipod. I have created a playlist of the pieces I currently have and am listening to the ones that I missed on the radio.
Tonight it was Brahms Violin Concerto... as much as I LOVE the first movement it was a little too crazy to be the right music for me to sketch to! I will be more selective in future!
In case you missed it last week - I am working through my Royal Albert 100 years tea set - using one a week (or until I get around to sketching it) so this is the second in the series.

Urban Sketches in Seattle Dinner

It is really fun now that I am home re-living some of the great times I had at the beginning of my trip.

As I was visiting friends in Seattle to begin with, I was very privileged to be able to have dinner with a few of the Urban Sketcher Correspondents - the night before the big Correspondent dinner in Portland the night before the Symposium. (does that make sense!)
Urban Sketchers in Seattle- before dinner
Urban Sketchers in Seattle - after dinner
Isabel, Gerard, Gabi, Lapin, Albert ("Urban Sketcher Husband") Tia
Absolutely amazing for me to be on the other side of the world and having dinner with these sketching legends - and having them watch me sketch my dinner!?! So amazing to be with obsessive sketchers – talk talk talk and then silence as we were all sketching!
0727TU_04b USK Seattle Dinner1
0727TU_05 USK Seattle Dinner2
Urban Sketchers in Seattle- Isabel and Lapin (sketching Gerard)
Urban Sketchers in Seattle Tia and Gabi Sketching
Urban Sketchers in Seattle- A happy bearA very happy bear to be sketched by Lapin!