Archive for the ‘Watercolour’ Category
Finally things are cooking in my sketchbook again! I have been swamped at work for a whole long while, but now the grades are done, the students are finishing up for the summer, and I´m finding more time to go out sketching again.
Today I met up with a few of the Stockholm sketchers for a tour around Skeppsholmen, a small island in the middle of the city. This is where you´ll find those charming old boats, the Modern Museum, a few quirky vehicles and other interesting things.
We were also blessed with some annoying gusts of rain during the day, which is not ideal when working with watercolours and ink. But hey, at least I´m out there sketching!
Both images approx. 21 x 14 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolour on Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook pages.
At the end of April, I went sketching with some friends in Bergianska trädgården (Bergius Botanic garden) in Stockholm. It´s still spring, in that nothing is lush and green, but so many flowers had begun peeking out, and it was great fun to draw them!
Funny story during the day: I met a little guy, about three years old, on a tricycle. He stopped right beside me where I was standing, drawing some cherry blossoms, and said:
“Excuse me, what´s that?”, and pointed at my tiny folding stool beside my bag.
“It´s a tiny stool that I sometimes sit on when I´m drawing”, I said. The kid was quiet for a moment and really scrutinized me, as if he thought I was lying.
“But your butt is so big?!”
“That´s right, but that little stool actually works very well anyway. In spite of my butt.”
The kid scrutinized me again.
So I did. I sat down on the stool, and ended up at about his eye level. Then he watched me sitting for about five seconds, said “Hm.”, and pedaled away.
21 x 15 cm, Duke calligraphy fountain pen with Platinum carbon ink, and watercolours, on Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook page.
I have spent two days drawing at the Natural History Museum in Stockholm lately. Yesterday I was there with a group of fabulous Stockholm sketchers, we spent a good few hours drawing and having lunch and coffee together. And last week, I was there with a colleague and a few students, drawing reptiles.
Scrollable images below, for more details.
When I was at the museum with the students, we had the luxury of being invited “backstage”, to see some rare specimens of reptiles from the museum collections. We got a whole room to ourselves where we could spread out our art equipment and bring coffee and chocolate to enhance the experience. Lovely.
Drawing for a few hours at a natural history museum mainly lets you discover how much stuff there is to draw there. I will have to return on my own one of these days, there were so many bugs, bears and birds that didn´t end up in my sketchbook.
Both drawings: 44 x 15 cm, Namiki Falcon with Platinum Carbon ink and various fineliners, and watercolours, on Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook spreads.
Someone, I won´t mention the full name, but it begins with an M, made a bet with me some time back. “If this orchid ever blooms again, I will take you to a Very Fancy Restaurant to celebrate. My treat. But it´s dead, I tell you.”
It´s been a slow process, the poor thing has been down to only one leaf for a period, but dead? Nope. It just needed eight years to come back.
Guess I´ll be enjoying a Very Fine Meal pretty soon.
Top drawing: Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook paper. Bottom drawing: some ink fineliner and watercolours on unknown paper in handbound sketchbook.
It´s the last Sunday of the month today, which usually means that the little group of sketch enthusiasts in Stockholm meet up for some drawing together. This time we were not so few – 15! We went to the Stockholm public transport museum, Spårvägsmuséet, and spent a few hours sketching interesting stuff in the exhibition.
The good people at the museum also let us into the room behind the exhibition space, full of interesting stuff, leftovers from exhibitions, possible items for future shows, all in a fantastic interesting mess. Super fun! And too little time to capture it all!
It was nice to be indoors for once, although today was not the coldest day of February.
Both drawings: 21 x 15 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook paper.
The Stockholm sketching group met last Sunday to sketch the view from a cozy rooftop bar at Södermalm. Only the bar was closed, so we ended up outdoors on the roof of restaurant Gondolen instead, cold, but with a view over my fav spot to draw, Slussen.
The New Slussen project is already visible everywhere around this place, although the city hasn´t officially started the actual destruction of the old Slussen. There are big roadworks preparing for the destruction, huge holes, fences and central heating pipes just about everywhere. It´s getting harder to walk or bicycle past Slussen, there is always a new concrete barrier somewhere forcing you out of your normal ways.
The archeologists at the City Museum (white building to the left) are making the most of the roadworks, though. In the big shaft visible in this sketch, they have found a piece of a 17th century street and an old kitchen with a baking oven from 1601. In other shafts they have found traces of buildings and workshops from the 15th and 14th centuries. Digging here is like opening a temporary window to the past, and although I hate roadworks as much as the next bicyclist, it´s amazing to think what might be lying beneath the surface of the rest of the city…
Had the opportunity to go sketching for about two hours in London yesterday, wrapping up a work trip to this fabulous city. London, January and a cold wind makes for fingers cold as ice, not much different from drawing outdoors in Stockholm at the moment.
Went into a café to warm up and fill in some colour, when a gentleman struck up a conversation with me. He wanted to discuss my technique, since he wanted to do something similar himself. He was suffering from stress, and had been ordered by the doctor to go out drawing. I´m just sayin´. This doctor got it right.
I managed to squeeze in an early morning sketch too, of the not too inspiring view from my hotel room.
Top and bottom drawings: 21 x 14 cm, middle: 18 x 14 cm, UniPin fineliners and watercolours in Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook.
We went to Nice over the New Year, a short trip to get some light and see some new sights. I have never been to Nice before, it was a very positive first encounter! Love the size of the city, the sea, the sun, the food, and just about everything else. My dear M can also report that Nice is an ok place to have a cold in. Next time I will have to find more time for drawing.
Having a hard time getting used to 2015 in my signature…
All drawings approx. 20 x 14,5 cm, UniPin fineliners and watercolours in Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook.
The Christmas celebrations are over, had a great time with relatives in Värmland in the Western part of Sweden. I managed to get myself out of the sofa (you know the drill around Christmas – lit candles, long-johns, and film watching is an important part of the general plan) and out drawing twice near where my in-laws live. I wanted to try out my watercolours in these really low temperatures (in this case -6 and -13°C), along with the vodka/water mix in my waterbrush. It did work really well to paint with watercolours this way, though the paint behaves a bit differently than usual.
It freezes a bit on the palette, just about to the texture of slush ice. Squeezing out more water/alcohol into it, turns it into floating paint again for a little while. It dries pretty quickly on the page as long as I don´t add too many layers of paint in a short time. In the second image, the cloudy sky actually behaved like it dried, but when I got inside it turned wet again, so obviously it had frozen.
Also, drawing and painting with double wool mittens is a bit tricky, but I found it quite liberating. I have to leave out a lot of detail, stop worrying about wiggly lines, and hurry up like crazy, because after about 20 minutes both drawing and paint has to be finished in these temperatures, otherwise I don´t have any sense left in my fingers.
So yeah, definitely no need to stop sketching outdoors because it´s cold. You just have to adjust time and tools a bit.
Top drawing: 20 x 13 cm, bottom drawing: 20 x 10 cm, UniPin fineliner and watercolours with vodka/water mix in Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook.