2016 ended quietly, without any big occurrences or incidences. I can be happy about that. I think the world is changing very rapidly all around us, politically, physically, technologically, and if for a moment I can be lucky to have my close family near, everybody safe, content, happy even, I am grateful. For those of you who know me, I can inform you we are still in Sweden and will be here through this year. Artistically, I don’t know where my path is taking me at the moment and I have not made any concrete resolutions. I don’t like resolutions, or the New Years Eve kind….I think they are short lived, destined to fail and just make you feel bad in the end.
At the last moment…actually on Jan 1 of 2017 I took a leap and started a cycling giraffe meme. In the past few months I have given it a lot of thought to a theme, or goal or continuous process of artistic direction that could transpire over the year. I came up short. But my last minute decision is still in an amorphous state. Drawing cycling giraffes is the common denominator, in which I hope this discipline evokes more creative giraffes and more ease at drawing both bicycles and giraffes. And at the end of the…proverbial…..day, I hope something else comes of this altogether. So here I go, for now the weaving of the thread includes winter holiday activities, day to day simplicities….I am not sure if this will take a year, 365, or week days only, or total out at 50 or 100….but so far this is what we got. They are 7.25″ sq watercolor and ink paintings.
Like I said I don’t like resolutions, but I have made some mental promises with myself to practice more portrait drawings and work on anatomy understanding more as well. And of course, I want to keep the urban sketching very active in my daily life….I can’t express how much more an impact a sketch is than a photograph. I have included some of my portrait sketches that I make with the help from an app for your phone called sktchy…check it out if you haven’t heard of it….it is a wonderful tool for artists of ALL levels, very supportive and very fun. www.sktchy.com
and a few urban sketches….
To everyone, I wish you all a wonderful journey through 2017. Good cheer and good health, patience and good virtue. Keep your passions thriving and help to lift others up. Hugs and well wishes for 2017!
Summer is over and Autumn is now grinding to a wet and grey transition to bitter winter. My days of sketching outside I think are numbered…single digits even. I am having an exhibit in a kommun not too far, Spånga, hosted by the Spånga Arts Society. I will be displaying prints of my Giraffes on Wheels, a few new giraffes, and a handful of my colorful Autumn House pieces that have kept me upbeat for the past few weeks. As I feel the heaviness of the lack of sun, recreating the few gorgeous days of blue skies and magnificent color that Sweden provided this early Autumn has proven beneficial to my happiness. Below is a slight progression from urban sketching to playing with color and simple swedish architecture.
Come join me in Spånga, vernissage on Sunday, October 30th at Spånga Församlingshus, Värsta Alle 1, from kl. 17:00
Also open Weekdays from 9:00 -12:00 and 13:00-16:00 until November 12, 16:00
Sincerest apologies for not posting more often….after a very quiet summer, working on portrait art and a personal project that involved sneakers and cursing…..I was enlightened with a very memorable trip to Málaga, Spain. It was a workshop titled Pushing your Sketchbook Boundaries, hosted by 3 different artists, Isabel Carmona, Miguel Herranz and Luis Ruis Padrón
Another Urban Sketcher from Stockholm and I traveled and bunked together and on top of visiting Málaga, learning from talented artists, and meeting a whole bunch of new artists, I had the pleasure to get to know a beautiful person better! So here I share a few of my photos and experiences. It was about the art, but also the culture and the food. Spaniards are loud compared to Swedes and maybe an octave louder than Americans too…it was nice to experience this. But they don’t sleep at night…that was a problem!
The start of a new sketchbook
early early flight Wednesday morning, sitting in Arlanda airport waiting for my traveling friend
One of the many “airplane” sketches I have done
Dinner the first night….ensalada and paella
I painted the mountains in Málaga from the beach.
After sketching on the beach we earned a cool drink…I had sangria, later I would learn to love tinto de verano, lemonade with a splash of red wine
Little salad, lots of fish, tasty but lots of it
Enjoying cool drinks and conversation the first night of the workshop
Getting to know each other the first night of the workshop
First day and we are off! Isabel is our first teacher….light and shade using watercolor
Isabel giving instruction.
Me and my traveling friend together.
Sweating it out…we are the pink group.
collection of our works with Isabel Carmona
Light and shade demonstrated…I wasn’t supposed to add the windows. I was reprimanded
While taking a little fika, or coffee break Isabel uses this chance to demonstrate light and shade with my face, haha
and the beautiful portrait that came from the demo
Afternoon session with Miguel Herranz, telling stories using mystery and different sizes.
Our collection from Miguel’s lesson
Dinner the first night…
Drawing moving targets with Luis Ruiz
Coffee break and sketching moving targets with Luis Ruiz after a tormented morning of failure, speaking personally.
Cool down session with Luis Ruiz, where he dissolves the mysteries of TREES! Very helpful, now to put it into action.
Day 2, afternoon session with Isabel. More light and shade, bigger building. That smile is an exhausted smile of imperfection, by 8:30 at night….that is all I could do.
Enjoyed some local culture at a Bodega, where Isabel showed us local Malaga wine…more like a sherry or port but interesting and tasty.
The wines come in sweet and dry varieties.
Luis Ruiz signing his book, and Joe enjoying a Malaga treat.
Dinner Isabel puts finishing touches on my portrait. That is not gazpacho, is it similar but with ham and egg….can’t remember the name.
Day 3, Miguel brings us to a cafe to sketch a story, using different angles, elements and mystery
So happy to have met this woman….I sketched her too!
The “pinkies” enjoying a pick me up….coffee and shade.
Luis Ruiz demonstrating how to draw. Well more than that but still…by now I am a bit punchy with the program…
Our final entries into our sketchbooks…well, from class lessons anyway…still plenty of room left for more sketches.
For me this was a farewell dinner to everyone, since I was leaving the next day early…El Pimpi
A memorable place for a farewell dinner.
Spring has sprung in Stockholm!!! You can feel the happiness in every footstep, sunglasses are gleaming, that sweet smell of earth and grass are all around! We will celebrate our oldest graduating gymnasium, my parents visiting us from across the pond and biking is in full swing….training for the Roslagsvåren. May is always a fun month because it celebrates my daughters’ birthday! I have a friend that believes that birthdays should be celebrated for the whole month…it took 9 months(or more 😉 to make you…one day a year doesn’t seem a proper duration to truly appreciate the beauty and celebration of “you”! and I agree!!!
I have started the Every Day in May project again….so here goes.
May 1 Toy.
May 1 Toy
May 2 Something with Folds
May 3 A hammer.
May 4 A game.
May 4 A game.
May 5 Something seen in a park.
I really enjoyed sitting outside and finishing this to the end….brought out the paints and all!
May 5 Park scene complete
I never gravitated to landscape painting. I took a pastel class about 6 years ago…and the beautiful landscapes my teacher could depict was mind blowing. I don’t know what it is but I am never able to get the perspective perfect or perfect enough to set the place correctly. Urban sketching, which in my way of thinking is more about being in a city, places with straight lines, buildings, people, movement, activity is another genre of landscape. Landscape painting encompasses more of the fields, vast horizons, open areas, which could be labelled as more sub urban…suburban. Not trying to get all technical at all….but I am in awe of an urban sketcher that can capture a moving scenario, with people and buildings that have presence….as I am in awe of landscape artists in general!
Yesterday (sunday) I met with the Urban Sketchers of Stockholm. We were meeting at Stortorget, in Gamla Stan….one of my favorite places (and anybody that has been to Stockholm probably also feels the same way). After having spent Friday and Saturday outside in the “weather” I was really hoping for a nice relaxing day of painting with friends. Well….just like my experience in Kungsträdgården for 2 days, mother nature is still throwing bits of winter at us. It was cold, windy, with rain, hail and snow. Oh and there was a fire incident and the trucks came and the trucks went….all very exciting. We enjoyed a warm fika after and then visited two different artists that were having exhibitions.
Finished with color
This is where I ended up sitting to finish the sketch
Where we enjoyed warm fika
This was as far as I got working outside.
On monday I took the train out to the printer to pick up thank you cards I made for the lovely people that purchased my art…..and there was this really well dressed man across from me on the train….I started nonchalantly sketching him while he was in deep conversation with his female companion. What caught my eye to begin with was his shoes and red socks. Unfortunately I didn’t size the sketch right to fit the socks and shoes….so sad! He was sporting a red striped button down shirt and a wool plaid red toned scarf….nothing short of dapper!
I was brave last night and brought out the sketchbook when I was early for meeting my husband for dinner in the city….happy with the fact this bridge resembles a bridge…I added ink and color today and wasn’t able to paint the evening darks….it wasn’t as dark as my photo appears anyway, the sun was just setting very quickly….
Every neighborhood has a “yellow car”. I am particularly fond of this one….and I think it was traveling for a few weeks….so when I spotted it….I plopped myself right down!