Monday, October 31, 2016

The barber in the mirror.

This is the second time I sketch at this barbershop. Last time I sketched some clients waiting their turn. This time I actually got the barber Tim. Needless to say Tim was moving all around, I never got him in the same position to sketch his reflection in the mirror, it was very challenging. The man on the seat was easy pie. Those on the very right are hanging electric razors. They look like fish to me, oh well, if you though those were fish, then this sketch stinks. Otherwise, mission are welcome.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Iconic landmarks of Chicago

What a joy is to meet new and old Urban Sketchers friends! We met at a major art materials store yesterday. After a brief introduction leaded by our administrators, we headed outdoor to sketch Chicago. My first sketch was the clock of Marshall Fields, here below.

I always wanted to sketch this clock of what was an upscale store on State St. and Washington St; a beloved iconic landmark here in Chicago. A street drum player sit next to me. I was willing to overlook his rhythmical but loud sound, until an spectator stood next to him for good 15 minutes and started to smoke. I wouldn't care if it wasn't because I was smelling the smoke, so I said to my self, that's it. I left. I didn't like where this sketch was going to anyway. This confirm my theory that if I am uncomfortable it shows in the sketch. I moved one block North on State St. to the Chicago theater. Many of us sketched this landmark as well. It will be a popular spot for the visitors of the 8th International Urban Sketchers Symposium. Chicago is honored to be the host next year! I hope to see you there!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Cashier with purple hair

A cashier with purple hair seemed to go along with the Halloween theme this season, either she is or not, purple hair made it to my sketchbook. Another day not cooking at home. Here at this grocery store, there is a great variety of ready to eat food. After being outside home most of the day, the last thing I want to do is cooking.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

A day trip to the South: Bloomington and Gibson City

We were invited to an Oktoberfest celebration dinner in Gibson City, Illinois by two of our dearest friends. As part of our plan, Bob and I spent the day in Bloomington before heading to Gibson City. Bloomington turned to be a city with lots of history. First we made a stop at Rosie's Pub, a nice place in downtown. The old building features adorn the bar in a way that transfer you to a another era. Here's the view from my seat. After lunch we visited two other places, the David Davis Mansion. David Davis was a judge, close friend and manager of A. Lincoln campaing, and the McLean County Museum of History. There we learned this city had a history of immigrants from all different countries in search of opportunities. Italian, Indian, Mexican, German, Welsh, African American, Irish people settled here. Bloomington is another great example of how diversity can make  a city or a country flourish.  Close to dinner we met our friends at Bayern Stube, where we had a great company, food and live music. I'll leave you here with a taste of the music we heard. It was great day.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Halloween decorations

As uncomfortable as I was in my car sketching this house, feeling clumsy dropping pens and rinse water on myself, I kind of felt great because I finished this sketch on location. Decorating houses is a custom that American families keep during the different seasons of the year and it is fun to watch because many owners show a sense of humor that can be contagious. I don't decorate mine. It doesn't mean that I don't have a sense of humor, alright? So my intention was to look for one house with overloaded decorations if possible. Without success, I didn't want to drive far from home, I found a cute one in the neighborhood. Check it out: a garland with leaves in autumn colors over the main door. A wreath on the front door matching the garland. Two pots with towers of pumpkins on each side of the entry way........wrapped with more garlands. A flag with a black cat on top of a pumpkin and a big yellow moon behind. To the left a big scared pumpkin. To the right a big Dracula and three small real pumpkins, and a Frankenstein (not shown here) at the other end of the garage door. Isn't fun to watch this?! I love it....... I love to sketch it too!

Monday, October 10, 2016

An alley in Ravenswood Chicago.

During the workshop we had last Saturday at Ingrid's Studio in Chicago, we all scrolled the Ravenswood Area, the participants looked for spots to sketch and I, as an instructor, looked for participants to follow up their work. In between participants, in my walks from one person to another, it was hard for me not to notice to the narrow alleys in the neighborhood. I managed to take 15 minutes of their time to make this sketch in ink (sorry people, the  beautiful opportunities this area has to offer was a temptation I couldn't resist). This is one of the many alleys between houses. Thanks to Ingrid who knows the area very well and suggested to us to check them out. I'ts dark but interesting. I water colored it this morning from a photo reference. This...... is Chicago though my eyes.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

My workshop at Ingrid's Studio in Chicago

Great fun this day turned out to be for my workshop Fearless Urban Sketching with Pen, Ink and Watercolor hosted by Ingrid's Studio in Chicago. Many thanks to the people who attended today, you were all so talented and Ingrid Albrecht, it was an absolutely delight to work with you! Everything was awesome! THANK YOU ALL!

If you want to attend more fun art workshops with Ingrid Albrecht please visit her website