Summer Sketching at Bella Vista Cafe

Week 7. Jan 27 ’15

So we finally had a wet day. And on our 7th and final Summer Sketching session at Bella Vista Cafe, our other studio!  However sketchers are a dedicated group of people, and came from far and wide to be here. Actually one regular is from Greece.

The staff are always so accommodating when we pull tables around – noisily – and then as sketchers arrive, we add another table. Most people in the cafe are quite intrigued by what we do, so don’t mind that we an effervescent bunch.

Today was a review of all the subjects we’d covered over the previous weeks.  Always a good thing as each person can see their own progress in their sketchbooks.

With much coffee and conversation, we did some demos where people needed a few pointers and we could try things out. We did a last 10 minute sketch of something out of your bag or briefcase. No pics of the work today as it was just notes and squiggles. Very valuable though. Next week back to regular classes. Can’t wait.

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Week 6. Jan 20 ’15

Week 6. Jan 20 ’15  Black and white today. With hatching for texture. This is about sketching when you don’t have your colours with you, or if it’s easier to simply sketch with a black pen and forget the colour.  This is yet another sketching option. First a demo of what’s on the table, showing the hatching and cross hatching.  You can get amazing depth and moulding with this technique. Ok, everyone have a go at something yourself. Good work. See how effective it is!  Even our 11yr old guest was head down and tail up doing exactly that. Then the real subjects of the day. Those gloriously enormous MortonBay Figs. Look at those branches curving into each other, and sweeping down to the spread out fingers of the roots. Perfect for b/w.  Everyone had a good session with this and with very effective results. Last 10 minutes – quick sketch of whatever you see. So we have vistas, cafe people, flowers all done at high speed – and don’t they look great.  Just goes to show. You’ll sketch better if you have less time! Funny that. IMG_2260 IMG_2263 …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. Week 5. Jan 13 ’15

Week 5. Jan 13 ’15 Summer Sketching at Bella Vista Cafe Today it was ‘people’ which was quite amusing as we were the only ones seated outside at that stage. So of course we sketched one another. For some it was a first. Meaning they’d not had the basic proportions of faces and bodies explained. However after a few quick “sausage people’, a look at the mannequins and then each other – we could throw together a pretty good impression of a real person. A bit of a demo on faces and profiles meant we could indicate which way a head was looking without getting too much detail. Great work from everyone, with or without much experience, these impressions were terrific. IMG_2205 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Tues Jan 6. The big harbour vista. Sketches by Jo at Bella Vista In Week 3 (Dec 30 ’14) we decided to remind ourselves of the tricks to using your watercolour pencils. With our coffees and food supplies catered for, we made patches of colour in our sketchbooks using our own special way of applying colour, to make heaps of other colours from a basic few. At the same time we were learning about pressure. How to hold the pencils. When go light. When to go dark. We got so carried away we didn’t do anything else. Well, one sketcher did manage some quick sketches of the serious faces in front of her! In Week 4 (Jan 7 ’15) of our casual summer sketching and we were so thrilled to be sitting under that huge Morton Bay fig in the breeze on such a perfect day. We let our paint do the talking while we consumed some vital coffees and think about the big vista we’re about to do. With our pages still wet we amble over the road to one of the best views of Sydney Harbour you can get. Taking it back to its basic shapes, we work out how we’ll place them on our page. I do a demo and most people get stuck in and do well with their own version even before I’m finished. They learn quickly! Here’s how using your simple strokes of pure colour works when you’re on a time limit. A great day and everyone enjoyed their chance to get a little sketching in during the long holiday break. On Wednesday Jan 7 , several of the Yoga sketches were off to St Leonards Park. They sent the results and they look to have had a pretty good time. Happy sketching till next week.

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