Saturday, 27 April 2013

Landscape architects' urban sketching tour

Sigrid Albert, Matthew Cencich and I ran an Urban Sketching tour for the BC Landscape Architects today. Someone must have angered a minor weather god, because it was during the wettest time of the only wet day we've had for a week or so - and cold and windy too!  Here Matthew and I are sketching with a few of the hardy architects in an outside courtyard, covered, but exposed to the wind.  Sigrid bravely accompanied the people who wanted to sketch in a warm, sheltered, latte-providing cafe.  I tried water-soluble crayons for the colour - not as nice as watercolours, but a bit quicker.  

This is a nearby apartment building, striking with its old brickwork surrounded by the glass tours of the west end.  I drew it on a nice sunny day when I was scouting locations for the tour.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

International Village Mall

Urban Sketchers met in Chinatown today.  It was sunny before and after, but pretty much everything else while we were there, so we went into the "International Village", which is a mall, much like any other mall anywhere. Which, I suppose, makes its name somewhat appropriate.  I went to the top floor and looked down on the colourful floors and mostly less colourful people.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

McClary woodstove and ice break-up

We spent a few days at my in-laws' cabin in the Chilcotin, well off the electrical and e-anything grid.  We cook and mostly heat the cabin with a McClary's Kootenay stove, a beautifully ornate wood-burning stove with elaborately cast chrome-plated parts.
Eagle Lake is a cerulean blue, like a tropical ocean, but not because of clean white sand - it has a white calcareous ooze covering the bottom.  Spring starts late in the cold Interior of BC, but there were some open leads of water in the ice on the lake when we arrived.  The scene changed rapidly with melt in sunny periods, wind pushing water onto the ice, new ice forming overnight, and several snowfalls.  I tried to capture some of these changes on the bay with a few islands, using quick water-colour thumbnails.  By the time we left, you could swim ice-free to the nearest island - if you were extremely cold-hardy, or a goose.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Maplewood spring

A quick sketch of the marsh at Maplewood Flats on a windy day, and a couple of the flowers that welcome spring.  

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Dr Sketchy's

 A couple of us from the urban sketchers group went to Dr Sketchy's ("the Anti-Art School") for life drawing.  It's held in a packed cafe, with food, wine and, because there was a nineties theme, really bad music.  The model was VaVa Vunderbust, a burlesque performer.  The drawings are a bit exaggerated.  But then again, Ms. Vunderbust is a bit exaggerated herself.


Friday, 5 April 2013

Heritage Hall Vancouver

I went to an UrbanSketchers meet-up at the Heritage Hall at Main and 15th in Vancouver today.  It's a pretty fantastic building, with carved sandstone friezes including various faces, patina'ed copper roof corners, a dome and a little baby dome, and various oddly shaped copper sticky-up bits (not the technical term).  It also uses stone from two different islands to give it a layered look on the bottom.  The building was originally a post office, a far cry from today's counters at the backs of dingy dollar stores.

It was raining, so I drew under the overhang of a not-so-lovely modern building across the street, kneeling in a concrete planter filled with lava rocks - becoming, undoubtedly, the first person ever to use that completely useless space.