We have had rainy weather lately, not to mentions storms causing trees to fall and roofs to fly.I am eager to get outdoors to paint plein air, bu in the meantime I honed my skills a bit with animal painting. My chickens, Omelette and Rembrandt and our German shepherd Lindiwe.
oil on board, 30x40cm
Blocking in shapes for Rembrandt
oil on board, 30x40cm
oil on board, 30x40cm
blocking in shapes for Lindiwe in oil
on the easel
February is a month in which many stores, restaurants and cafés close for a fortnight, taking their break before spring arrives with all its liveliness. Not much is happening in the mostly grey month of February. Everybody is cocooning and taking Prozac in front of their daylight lamps. Schools are also closed for a fortnight and the whole world goes skiing in February. Tradition. Except…this year is not a great skiing year with snow only on the highest peaks.
In the one café that is open during this month, I enjoyed my coffee and croissant. It is better than Prozac at least. It was stock full of people, being the only bar open in town, with everybody looking for a counter to lean on with their petit noir. I am not a counter girl, I prefer a table and a large one at that for all my clutter.
It is actually great sketching wise, when there are so many people in a bar. Nobody notices you giving him/her the infernal sketching glare, so drawing people is much more relaxed.
Streetview opposite café de la Poste in Bretenoux…Just a building across from Cafe de la Poste. I had my young German shepherd, Lindiwe with me who got impatient and I had to speed up the sketching.
Watercolor and Pilot Prera pen in Stillman & birn sketchbook, 22X14.5cm
Café life 1, 2 3: In PMU, we all call it Cécile’s bar, life was busy and noisy and sketching went great. The only problem was that my pen got empty and it got more and more difficult to make nice dark lines.
Pilot Prera pen in Stillman & Birn sketchbook, 22×14.5cm
One of my favorite paces to lunge for my sketchbook, is in Cafe Douceur in Beaulieu sur Dordogne. Such a welcoming lieu, you keep drinking coffee just to have an excuse to linger longer.
coffee corner in Cafe Douceur
Ink and a wash in Stillman & Birn sketchbook, 14X22cm
Coffee at Voyageurs
Pen and watercolour in Stillman & birn sketchbook, 14X22cm
Sketching faces in St Céré
Pen and watercolour washes in moleskine, 22X14cm
I had the opportunity to sit down for a coffee today on the terrace and had some men close-by to sketch. Some people don’t mind to be sketched, but the majority feel uncomfortable with being the subject. Fortunately today’s subjects were so busy with their own thing, they didn’t notice me who was hiding behind a big plant…sort of. I am very rusty on sketching people…there was a time I did it almost every day and now it happens once a year, for exactly the reason I mentioned…getting rebuked by people who don’t want the attention. Nonetheless..I present to you…the three men.all done in moleskin book(which is a little too light for my watery brushstrokes and the colour bled through to the back of the page. I don’t mind bucking pages, but I fiercely dislike colour going seeping through the paper.
pen and watercolour washes in moleskine, 22.5X13.5cm
I had no idea what to draw or paint today. If I weren’t so committed to my September project, I would’ve been on the couch, watching a movie. It is raining, it is cold and it is Sunday. On the best of Sundays, I feel blue and foul mooded. Today was no exception. The drawing says it all.
graphite on drawing paper (49,7x42cm)
We were in Singapore for a few days recently and apart from devouring sushi, morning noon and night, I managed to pack in a few sketches. I found the climate very tiring for walking and sketching…heavy, hot and humid! But for the rest, I enjoyed every bit of the trip(except the flight there and back of course, but that is only becasue I hate flying by default).
Singapore is rich in culture and history, two things that I thoroughly enjoy. Discovering cultures different than mine and learning about their history truly enriches me. I feel fortunate to have been able to learn a bit more of Singapore…next on my list is Japan towards the end of the year, depending on the circumstances. We were in Singapore when Japan was hit recently and I sadly witnessed many people cry for family they’ve lost or haven’t heard of back in Japan.
Read more about the history of singapore here.
You can see some photos of the trip here at Sushi..and Singapore.
Or on Facebook.
Pen and watercolor in watercolor sketchbook, 15.5×35 cm
…on the esplanade…
pencil and watercolor in watercolor sketchbook, 15.5×35 cm.
.. Lin bo Seng memorial and old supreme court…
pencil and watercolor in watercolor sketchbook, 15.5x35cm
pen and watercolor in watercolor sketchbook, 15,5×35 cm.
Pen and watercolor in watercolor sketchbook, 15.5x35cm.
Pen and watercolor in watecolors sketchbook, 19x20cm
…buddha tooth relic temple in chinatown…
pencil and watercolor in watercolor sketcjbook, 15.5x35cm.
pen and watercolor in watecolor skechbook, 19x20cm
I’ve picked up my pen again. If one stays on a break for too long, you can lose the desire to return. It is like that with everything in life. At some stage you need to apply some discipline to get going again.
For the first time in along while, I have done some sketches while having coffee in a bistro in Tours. My favorite way of doing it, is with contour lines. If I don’t watch it, I’ll do everything in contour fashion. I love it.
Some of the sketches worked, others didn’t. But it is always like that. Not every sketch is a success. I’m happy with the sketch of the three men at the top and I’m happy with the two men to the left in the bottom sketch. Unfortunately the child and man to the right didn’t work out.
I have also received my first postcard from Albrecht in Germany. Please visit A postcard from albrecht in Germany to see the post on his postcard.