Garden Sketchabout 4: Music in the gardens and two tearoom visits

April 2, 2011 | 7 Comments

 Another HUGE sketching Saturday…

As per my sketchabout tradition, I started the day with a walk across the Harbour Bridge and a visit to Tara Tearoom. The tearoom is located on a street with markets so there are plenty of people to sketch if I sit outside!!! I have realised that one of the big problems with my sketching of people is that I rarely add colour… adding colour is SO important to me in defining my sketches and it is also the part that I love the most (I love drawing too but often the colour hides linework that I wasn’t happy with!)…so doing these sketches today were a bit of a lightbulb moment.

Also- about drawing maps… they do not need to be accurate to record your movements – in fact this one shows a lot more than I would be able if it was accurate- Sydney Harbour is not that narrow!

Ok… a lovely time sketching my tea and scone. A new tea cosy Leroy came to visit me. (Please note: if anyone finds this tea cosy offensive please let me know and I will adjust/remove it – I personally was very attached as a child to a similar knitted toy that my nanna made for me…but do not want to offend anyone)

BTW, I discovered this week that in Devon the cream goes on first and the jam on top but in Cornwall it is the other way around. This is the first time I put cream first and really enjoyed it and will stick with it I think! So I am now a cream first(scone) as well as a milk first(tea) girl!

Time to head for the gardens(I was supposed to get there early for some focused sketching)…but it started raining and blowing a gale – nevertheless(i love that word!) I sketched with the threat of rain – this is a wonderful art installation made of building fragments. I have wanted to sketch since I discovered it but it has either been rainy or way too hot to sketch in the sun…so at least I have the first sketch now…but of course I want to go back some day!

Next- a lovely surprise – an open day at the nearby Conservatorium of Music with some events in the garden – so I had to sketch it! Next, lunch with some sketchers before the really sketchabout started. (BTW, I didn’t sketch what I was eating!)

Another great group today and thankfully it did not rain! About 25 people – really getting to know some of the regulars and lovely meeting new people each week!!

I started by sketching an art installation which was a little challenging – had a lovely chat to fellow sketchers in the middle.

Then time to actually draw a detail of a plant and then another Moreton Bay Fig – love these trees. More chatting to new sketchabout attendees – it is such a lovely social event. I have worked out that as long as I get my sketches 80% finished, I can chat a lot and still sketch my usual amount (just a bit more to do at night!)

I went in search of Sadami and found her sketching musicans back up at the Vista Pavilion and then I joined in sketching- just as a jazz performance started- it was WONDERFUL!!!

Once again…I am a little nervous of sketching people with others looking around me but adding the paint helps me. Did a few sketches on loose sheets – takes some of the pressure off!

Finally…time for the big walk back to my car (I walked a total of 8km- 5 miles today) and I was cold and needed a hot drink…so ended up back at Tara for the second time in the one day! (Oh Liz!!!) and then felt so revived that I then stopped to sketch on the bridge on the return walk. Trying a bit to hard to make an interesting spread and connect the two sketches.

BTW, there are baskets with communal knitting in the tearoom.

Wow! Big day…all I can say is that I am so glad for the end of daylight saving tonight – I have need that extra hour to finish off my pages and scan and post these!


  • Colorfuldayz says:

    I have been following your blog for a little while now, and just wanted to say thanks for all of your posts. I love your style … it comes across on paper as feeling free and relaxed (don't know if it feels that way when you are doing them!) … and fun! I have just started trying to sketch more, and your posts inspire me to pick up my journal and head outside.

  • Robyn says:

    LOL, I'm exhausted just reading about it, Liz. Love the fig tree and the leaf detail. I can see your 'people' confidence growing already. Great post.

  • vivien says:

    that's a LOT to achieve in a busy session and it's great, so lively and full of the atmosphere. The maps really add another dimension, adding context.

    Communal knitting sounds fun!

  • Ann's Art says:

    Hi Liz, I have also followed your blog for a while. Can't believe the amount of detail you put into your sketches, something I really must learn from. Keep up the good work. Oh and by the way, I live in Devon, glad you like the cream tea the Devonian way:)

  • Liz Steel says:

    thanks robyn and vivien!
    Thank you colorfuldays for your kind words – yes FUN and free does describe my sketches and sometimes they are relaxed – certainly solo tearoom visits are the ultimate relaxed sketches. I do hope you get outside more- it really is the most fun way to sketch – I find it takes the pressue off being perfect because there is often a condition which makes it a challenge (sun, wind, people looking over your shoulder) which you can blame for its imperfection!
    thanks ann! Yes, I am a devon way devonshire tea girl now definitely!!!

  • Hello Liz ! I just became a follower of your blog because your sketchbook is SO inspiring ! Thanks a lot for those colorful pages.

  • kuhurobe says:

    Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed browsing your blog posts. In any case Iâ??ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

    generic nolvadex

Leave a Reply