Thursday, 30 April 2015

A week of Tulips

  I love tulips and I bought this bunch last Sunday.  I have been sketching them every day since.  The sketch above was done on day four when the flowers are beautifully open and stems start to sprawl.

I really enjoyed seeing the tulips in Holland many years ago.  At one tulip farm, people could buy the bulbs and have them sent anywhere in the world.  My mother is a wonderful gardener and I thought I would send some to her.  When it came to the ordering I asked for special bulbs as Mom is an extraordinary gardener.  The bulbs did arrive , were planted and as they should,  the tulips came up in a spendid display. Well, it caused a tulip mania in our little town.  Everyone had to have tulips!  They had to make do with the local bulbs, no exotic ones for them.  Tulips are beautiful no matter how common they are.


This is the first sketch of the tulips, flowers are tight and stems upright.
This is the second day of tulips.  Sketched from above. The flowers are starting to open up.

This is the third day of tulips, also sketched from above.

      I did this smaller sketch on day 5. It is a card for a friend who is celebrating her birthday.       

I will do some more sketches of the tulips as they decline, see next blog post.


Sunday, 26 April 2015

Sydney Hospital


This building is part of Sydney Hospital on Macquarie St.  
Sydney Hospital is Australia's oldest hospital, dating from 1788 and has been at it's current location since 1811.
Soon after the first fleet arrived, a tent hospital was established in the Rocks.  This was replaced by a wood and copper prefabricated building which came from England.
When Governor Macquarie arrived in 1810 he set land aside to build a hospital.  In order to fund it he gave 3 business men the monopoly to sell rum and the profits from this were to build the hospital.
Later Florence Nightingale sent 5 nurses from England to help run the infirmary and these were the first trained nurses in this country.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

St James Church

St James is an Anglican Church in inner city, Sydney.  It is the oldest church building in our city and has been in continuous use since 1824.  It was designed by convict architect James Greenway and built by convict labour.  It is listed on the Register of the National estate and has been described as one of the world's 80 greatest man made treasure.

   The steeple wasn't put in this lower sketch because when you look at the building straight on the steeple didn't look right.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Sydney Town Hall


Sydney Town Hall, sometimes described as a wedding cake was built between 1868 and 1889.
It's purpose today is the same as it has always been- a place for meetings, performances, exhibitions, receptions, concerts and the offices of the mayor and other employees of local Goverment.
Before Sydney Opera House was built, Sydney Town Hall was the place where the big performances were held.  Even though we have the Opera House now, concerts are still held here.
The founding fathers wanted the fanciest and the best for their imposing building. The organ was imported from England and when it was installed in 1890 it was the largest in the world.  This same organ is still used today.
There are plenty of Australiana within the building, flora and fauna incorporated in the building's plaster work, carvings and stained glass.
The steps in front of Sydney Town hall is the most popular meeting place in the city.  It is in a very convenient location, close to everything and trains and buses all very close.
I sat across the street from Town Hall on Saturday to sketch this.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Buskers in the city


I met some "sketchy" friends in the city yesterday. It was lovely listening to music and sketching the busking musicians and others there.  This is a French guitarist named Bastien Goudard who is here on holidays. He is fantastic, we really enjoyed hearing him.  
It was quite good sketching buskers like Bastien because he didn't move much.

This Ky who entertained the crowds with his singing and playing.  He was a great dancer, hopping around like a professional.  His little sister was at the computer managing the acoustics.

A lady in the crowd.

 One of my sketchy friends.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Frank Gehry in Sydney


Frank Gehry is a world renown architect who has created a wonderful building in Sydney.  It is called the Dr Chau Chak wing of the UTS  business school.  Dr Chau Chak donated 20 million dollars to help create this 180 million dollar building, thus the name.
Frank Gehry is a Canadian born architect who resides in the US and has designed some of the world's most exciting buildings.  

     Sydney Urban sketchers visited this marvel on Saturday.  When drawing the sketch above, a woman stopped to talk and check it out.  She is a lecturer who has an office in the building and  said that she loved to come to work because of this place.

Here are some of other Gehry buildings.

This is the Guggenheim museum in Bilbao in Spain.  It is said that this building has really helped to turn around the economy of this city.

This is called the Dancing House in Prague.

This is the Walt Disney Concert Hall in LA.

This is a tower in Lower Manhattan, 8 Spruce St.

Sydney is very lucky to be able to say that we have a Frank Gehry piece of architecture too.  

Friday, 10 April 2015

Peter Godwin at the Defiance Gallery


I am a big fan of the artist Peter Godwin and his latest exhibition is on right now at the Defiance Gallery, Enmore Road, Newtown. The show is called River, Mountain, Cloud-Li River Variations, China 2014/2015.  
Peter Godwin lives on the water North of Sydney but it has taken a trip to China to get him thinking about landscape painting. All the paintings in the show are of the same imagery, of  those distinctive mountains and river .  I love the atmosphere he creates of clouds and mist.  The scale of the mountains is evident when you see the tiny white horse or occasional figure in some painting's foregrounds.
I attended the preview last Sunday's morning and even though I had no intention of buying a painting, I could not resist buying a small one.  I feel very lucky to be able to do that.
The largest painting which was 240 x 258 cm was purchased by the Australian National Gallery.  

It's worth having a look at the Defiance Gallery website to see Peter's exhibition if you can't see it in real life.

Most of the paintings are egg tempera on board, a few oils and a number of mono prints and etchings.


This is the painting I bought.  It is called Mountains as Figures, Li River and is 20 x 30 cm.  it is egg tempera on Italian gesso on board.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Spanish Guitar at Queen Victoria Building, Sydney



I was sketching in the city outside the Queen Victoria Building on Monday.  Joseph Zarb was playing guitar outside and the atmosphere was wonderful.  Children were dancing and many people were enjoying the music and good weather.  Joseph was fantastic and played for hours, smiling and speaking with those who approached him.  What a nice fellow and very talented.  He is playing at the Camelot in Marrickville soon and I highly recommend it.
Below are some sketches of Joseph done from different angles.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Television show taping


Sketch Club went to the taping of a television program friday morning.  We went to Channel Ten in Sydney and sketched while the morning show was being filmed.  It was great fun seeing what went on behind the scenes.  They really tried to give us a fun experience, providing lots of treats like coffee, hot cross buns, chocolates, candy throughout the program and we got a movie DVD too.
I sketched these while sitting in the back row, adding the colour at home. It wasn't easy clapping when the applause sign was lit and you have pen and paper in hand.
It was a great time which would be fun to try again.
Celebrities, camera men, audience and security.

  There was a Gloria Jeans coffee shop in the studio.  The security guard and the coffee man were watching the show too.

      Camera men and women.

The celebrities sitting on the couch.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Coffee shop, Summer Hill


After sketching the milk bar at Summer Hill (see last post) I thought it would to get out of the gutter and sketch in more comfort.  Sat in this coffee shop which was very busy, the workers were moving around so quickly it was hard to catch them on paper.