I think that fatigue was really starting to set in now…but still, I keep going! Surprisingly (or not so surprisingly) I ended up sketching away till it got dark … this particular shophouse sketch was done in the fading light. But more of that later…
The USK SG gang had kindly organised another Adhoc sketchwalk this time meeting at the tourist destination of the Merlion park. I did not want to sketch the Merlion but I wasn’t averse to sketching the iconic MBS again since I had had a lot of fun sketching it a few times last year. If you haven’t already noticed, I DO like sketching the same thing over and over again and comparing the different versions. But, more important than Marina Bay Sands, I really wanted to sketch the Fullerton Hotel. It is probably the most interesting classical building in Singapore.
We walked around it and through it, trying to find a good view that was in the shade. Sadly the only spot that was comfortable enough meant that the building was all in shade with little light and dark to work with. Now a serious painter would be appalled with this decision – you paint the light not the building and you paint from the best, not the most comfortable position. Sorry, I have to be comfortable and when you are travel sketching with certain things on your list you have to make the best of the situation.
Fernanda gave us a lovely little tile from Lisbon… ah! it brought back memories of the wonderful USK symposium there in 2011….
First sketch done (always good to get that first one done) … I wonder where Tia is…
She was just on the other side of the bridge sketching the Esplanade building. It was another building on my to sketch list so I sat down and had a go too. So inspiring to be sketching alongside Tia and Paul – sketching the same view. To fill up the rest of the page I did a secondary sketch- another chance to sketch my fast sketching technique using a Blackwing pencil I borrowed from my fellow sketcher… hmm, I don’t think I am a pencil girl…
An impressive group gathering and collection of sketches from a big group – many of the sketchers I was meeting for the first time.
Then a group of us went for lunch. I had already eaten but still needed something, so thought it was a good chance to sketch an ice kachang (and eat it too of course!). Sadly my serve did not look as interesting as I expected so I decided it wasn’t sketchable enough – but seriously looking at this photo now, it would have been fun to draw, wouldn’t it? Funny how your expectations can at times affect you seeing sketching opportunities.
After lunch, it was time to visit some art store… I made the bold announcement that I didn’t need to buy any more art supplies… but ended up buying stuff.. only a few pencils! The amazing thing that did happen was that we ran into Cheang Jin from Penang who was in town for work. He did the rounds of the art-related stores in this part of Singapore and ran into different USKers at every location… rather tragic I think!
Next, afternoon tea. Vincent told me that we should have had the croissants at Tiong Bahru bakery so we headed to their outlet in Raffles City mall…it was crowded and very noisy and I do think that this affected my dense use of watercolour. There is no doubt that my artwork is always affected by my mood and surroundings.
Once again I was getting restless so decided to make a move….back to my local area, Kampong Glam, for some late afternoon sketching. It was lovely to have some company – Chris and Chawaree. Even though I am a very bold urban sketcher there are times when I don’t want to sit in a spot that is too public…but when I have company it is easy “hey, lets sit down here right in the busy shopping strip”. Warmup sketch … another one of the Sultan Mosque.
And then I settled down to do what I really wanted to do… a detailed sketch of a shop house. In light of all the experimenting and mixing up of my usual way of sketching with ink and wash, I was a little dissatisfied with this one at the time. Wrote a few notes to myself on the right side… I am finding these notes really interesting and useful when I come back later. I am trying to make them a record of ideas I had at the time. Not ‘beat-up’ type comments but more prompts of something to explore further – on this occasion it was to think more about strong colour and flat light situations. Light coloured buildings in strong light are a lot easier to sketch as there is naturally more white space left on the page.