A special day on the Tasman Peninsula

February 16, 2015 | 14 Comments

I had a really big day today – heading out just after 8.30am and returning back to my appartment after 9pm! I had an urge to revisit Port Arthur but was wondering how wise it would be, since it is 1.5 hours drive from Hobart and I am supposed to be relaxing! However I am very glad that I made the decision to go, not just for the visit to Port Arthur (which was great), but because of how good it felt to be seeing some of Tasmania’s wonderful scenery and especially some dramatic coastline. Seeing and sketching the waves crash against rocks always does me  good. My first stop was the tessellated platform, where I used a vanishing point for a beach scene!

I had a great time at Port Arthur – I think it was 1997 when I was there before. I remembered some areas distinctly and others I had no relocation of, or have been significantly changed. So there was lots of exciting new bits for me to explore and record. There is so much to draw there! I did a LOT of sketching in the 4.5 hours that I was there – I just counted 9 sketches! I am challenging myself to do quick rough sketches at the moment so they are less polished than my normal travel sketches. For my entire time at Port Arthur, I was able to sketch uninterrupted and only have a few ‘thats great’ passing comments. Oh I also got a unique comment from a staff member who saw me sitting outside a cottage  “for vagrancy and squatting you are sentenced to 7 years and 100 lashes!”. I asked if I could keep my paints for the 7 years!?!

On my way out I had another “are you Liz Steel?” moment. This time from a Sydneysider, visiting Tasmania, who had done my SketchingNow Foundations online course! Oh! small world! It was so lovely to see her sketchbook (a “tears in the eyes” moment) and we had a quick silly photo with a convict!

It was then time to do a few more coastal sketches. Stunning afternoon and stunning view at the Remarkable Cave lookout towards Cape Raoul.

Then a walk down to the cave – which is truly remarkable –  and time for a quick watercolour pencil sketch.

Next I headed back and visited the Tasman Arch – both of these coastal features are very hard to photograph (iether exposure or just fitting it all in!) so it was very satisfying to sketch them.

I wanted to make sure that I got back to Hobart before dark, but decided to have a quick dinner at the Doo-lich-us Food Cart in DooTown. Quick? No way! For starters I decided to sketch the food cart while waiting for my fish and chips. This of course attracted attention with the staff.

But also with the other people in the area. So anyway, to cut a long story short, I meet Nick from France and his travelling squirrel plus his two other French mates, and then three girls that work at Port Arthur. Of course I wanted to sketch Squiry and there was an idea to shoot some video of me doing it. However, in true Liz-style, I had finished the sketch before the tripod was found so I did a second sketch (I think this was Squirrel’s better side anyway). A very silly evening making new   friends which happens often when I am out with my sketchbook! I think Nick will upload the video of me sketching Squiry so you might want to keep on eye on his adventures here.


  • Stacey Vadaj - February 16, 2015 reply

    just read through some of the back posts and realized you are putting on the SketchingNow course. Thank you very much! I'm there this time!!

  • Shirley Peters - February 17, 2015 reply

    Thanks for posting: very interesting read, and great paintings!

  • Alissa Duke - February 17, 2015 reply

    wow - the amazing adventures of Liz ! It all sounds wonderful and Tasmania look stunning !

  • Jules Woolford - February 17, 2015 reply

    What a lovely post! Glad you are having a great break after all your hard work on the class. How brilliant you met one of the SketchingNow students. I wish it had been me, because Tasmania looks fabulous!

  • CrimsonLeaves - February 17, 2015 reply

    Liz, life is always so full of excitement and joy for you. I love visiting and seeing what you've been up to with your sketching!

  • BarMill - February 17, 2015 reply

    Absolutely wonderful to follow your life's journey through your sketchbooks and many outing spots.

  • Liz Steel - February 19, 2015 reply

    thank you Barmill.... having a sketchbooks = adventures!

  • Liz Steel - February 19, 2015 reply

    Thank you Sherry!

  • Liz Steel - February 19, 2015 reply

    thank you Jules... yes, it was pretty exciting to be spotted like this and to look through Kate's wonderful sketchbook!

  • Liz Steel - February 19, 2015 reply

    thanks - you are a lot closer to Tassie now!!

  • Liz Steel - February 19, 2015 reply

    your welcome Shirley!! I love sharing my work and adventures!

  • Liz Steel - February 19, 2015 reply

    thanks Stacey - if you get my newsletter you will hear news first!

  • Katie - February 20, 2015 reply

    Hi Liz! I notice in several of your photos here we get a nice view of your sketching set up. I'm wondering what you are using to attach your sketchbook, palette, etc to... a lightweight board or something? Do you have any posts where you show how you carry your traveling kit and then how you put it together and start sketching? Fascinated by your improvised traveling work space! :) (am a late comer to your Sketching Foundations course too, only at lesson 9, but so enjoying. Thanks!)

  • Liz Steel - October 1, 2015 reply

    Hi Katie- sorry I missed this. Please go to my current sketching tools page for link to more information!

Leave a comment