Archive for the ‘travels’ Category
My book Drawing around Sagrada Família is now available for Europeans too, via Amazon.es. This is the Spanish Amazon site, which means it is in Spanish, but I´m sure you´ll manage. : )
(If not, open up amazon.co.uk, for example, in another browser window, and see how the buttons and links work.)
Also available for the US here: Drawing around Sagrada Família, amazon.com
For those of you who wonder: the book is written in English, and has a translation to both Spanish and Catalan in the last few pages.
I just got word (and images) from my publisher, Zahorí, that my book Drawing around Sagrada Família is printed! It is not for sale just yet, but soon will be. (I will let you know when it is.)
The sketches in it were drawn during ten days in August last summer, when I was invited by Zahorí to explore and draw the Sagrada Família and the streets around it. The sketches were made into a Sketch guide, the start of a new series of books that Zahori is producing. It was a fantastic experience, not just because the Sagrada Família is an amazing place, but also because I have never drawn so much and so intensely around one and the same subject before.
Released along with my book, there is also a Sketch guide called Explore Gaudí by Swasky. Check it out here.
I will post more images as soon as I get my hands on a copy!
We celebrated the new year near Sunne this time, a community in the landscape Värmland in western Sweden. I drove into “town” (not sure you can actually call this a town… but yeah, sort of) to sketch on New Year´s eve, but the rain started pouring down, so I had to sit in the car. I always find it awkward to draw in the car. Even if you move the seat back it is still a very confined space to flip open your sketchbook in, and spread out your favorite drawing tools. There is always something in the way, steering wheel, door handles, gear lever… Drives me nuts. Plus, I had to run the wipers every minute to even see out the windshield. But at least I got some drawing done. : )
27,5 x 14 cm, Namiki Falcon with Platinum Carbon ink and watercolours, on HandBook sketchbook spread.
The day after the Urban Sketchers symposium ended back in July, a few of us headed up to the north side of the island, to a village called Samana. We wanted to get away from the city for a few hours, and see some other parts of the Dominican republic, and a bus trip across the island seemed like the perfect way to do it.
We ended up at Anadel beach, a slow and calm place where the waves rolling in was the only sound present. We spent a few fantastic hours here, swimming, sketching, and eating the most wonderful lunch with all kinds of deliciousness from the sea.
The contrast to the bustling city life of Santo Domingo was striking. This beach was near empty, apart from some local kids playing in a little creek that hit the ocean here. The sea finally gave us the chance to cool off, which was nearly impossible in Santo Domingo. Refreshed and energized, we headed back to the city in the afternoon, stopping for a quick sketch in a nearby village.
The days after the Urban Sketchers symposium ended, there were a bunch of sketchers still lurking about in Zona Colonial, and one day we decided to head up to the Mercado do Modelo to sketch. The streets around this place are interesting, to say the least, for an urban sketcher. So full of life – people, traffic, market stands, street dogs, noise and music, and walking around there makes your hand automatically grip after a pen!
While I was drawing the sketch above, a man approached me, and explained that I should add the word “Mercado” on the roof sign. He made it very clear to me that the real name of the place is MERCADO do Modelo, “don´t forget the Mercado!”. He couldn´t see the meaning of just drawing it the way it actually was. The word Mercado had fallen off, you can see the corner of it sticking out as a little greenish blob to the left of “do”.
We drew for a couple of hours, and then headed down to Zona Colonial again for a bite to eat. We had a quick photo session on those yellow steps before we left:
In my workshop in Santo Domingo, I had the participants try out some methods to make the white paper less pristine before starting a drawing. We did all sorts of things, spattered paint, scraped the papers against the ground, painted the soles of our shoes and stepped on the paper. Or, as in these sketches, painted watercolours onto the pattern of a man hole cover, and pressed the sketchbook against it. In the left image (a café near Parque Colón) it worked quite well. I think the dot pattern adds a bit of interest to an otherwise quite empty background. In the right image, I got a beautiful print that said “Santo Domingo” (mirrored, of course, since it´s a print), but a lot of it disappeared because as I was drawing, I couldn´t help myself but let the sketch swell out over the whole page. The following watercolour washes dissolved the print.
Printing on a page like this is always a bit risky, it may end up well or it may become messy, but it´s a great memory to take home from a place you visit. And the participants in my workshop did incredibly interesting page layouts, involving the prints into their sketches.
I gave a workshop in Santo Domingo during the Urban Sketchers symposium, so I didn´t have much time for sketching myself. But I had the opportunity to participate in two other workshops, What´s Behind An Onion with Swasky and Miguel Herranz, and Capturing The Event with Thomas Thorspecken. Both were fantastic, I had so much fun during these sessions.
In the Onion workshop we worked a lot with layers, foreground and background, and how to emphasize one or the other by playing with line width, colour, drawing tools and ways of drawing. I tried out so many fun things here, and hearing two great sketchers talking about how they think and work things out when they draw was very enlightening.
In the Capturing the Event workshop, Thorspecken talked about how he has become a steady visitor at cultural events, where he goes drawing to capture what happens there. He also shared a few things about how he builds up his drawings, and then we headed out to try it out for ourselves.
One point that Thomas really made clear, was that he ALWAYS finishes his sketches, no matter what. I´m sorry, Thomas, I didn´t quite make it with this one. I wanted some more shading on the buildings and something to make the ground feel solid, but alas, it was time to go. This is one of the first sketches where I really struggled to get people at different distances from myself actually have their correct proportions. I really struggled to try to measure their heights, and draw some main features before they disappeared out of sight. Otherwise I am usually quite sloppy with that, I just draw, and if it ends up a bit crooked, it´s not too big of a deal. This was like laying a difficult puzzle, even though there aren´t that many people in the scene.
The great thing about the Symposium workshops is that no matter what level of drawing skills you have, you will always learn something new from the instructors. It is such a cool experience to try on someone else´s technique or ways of thinking when sketching, you always discover new ways of looking at the world around you!