September 17, 2019

September Flowers in Wagner Park

Summer is almost over, and I will miss my visits to Wagner Park to see and draw the flowers.  The Battery Park Conservancy has wonderful gardeners, and every week there are new varieties in bloom.  They have an adult art program in Wagner Park in the morning and I go to figure drawing early to see friends and quickly sketch the new "flowers of the week."  I am enough of a novice that I don't know the names of many of them.  These last two weeks I first saw the purple Passion Flowers, and then concentrated on them in the second week.  There are huge vines growing in both sides of the park, and only when you get close to the flowers do you realize how complex they are.  

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Purple Passion Flower:  This sketchbook page was drawn the second week - and has a drawing from above and the side.  There are about 550 species and these in Wagner Park were growing on vines.  Others can grow on shrubs and trees per Wikipedia.

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September 13, 2019

It Didn't Rain on Wednesday!

Figure al Fresco

It was very warm, but sunny, Wednesday at Battery Park City, and then our model didn't arrive.  One of the Conservancy employees quickly filled in and was great.  

This was a 10 minute pose of Frances done with a Burnt Siena watercolor pencil on toned paper.  I resketched the lines with a pen when I got home because the drawing was too light. 

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One more of my Drawing Sheets: 

My figure drawing on the left was a 20 minute pose - drawn with a soluble graphite pencil.  When I finished sketching her there, I added water to the three 1 minute poses on the right that I did earlier.

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I have two pages of flowers, and 4 pages of drawings done at Christie's Southeast Asia Modern and Contemporary Auction Preview on Monday - that I still want to paint.  There are so many other things that kept me from my paints this week, but I am delighted that retirement is so fulfilling.  I began my Fall semester FIT class on Monday, Fashion Art and Design, and my homework is drawing front and back views of my fashion figure - which is 10 head sizes tall, instead of 7.5 heads tall like real people.  Should be interesting.  

September 10, 2019

More Figures in Motion August 2019

I love drawing human figures, and although I can draw people who are sitting around, or standing in groups talking, I can't draw any person who is moving fast.  I keep thinking that if I draw enough from photos, I will be able to fill my memory with specific actions, but so far that is not happening. 

I sketched these 3 figures on quarter sheets of scrap copy paper, painted them with watercolor, then collaged them on a piece of paper that I made with acrylic paints and a Gelli Plate. 

Last night I began a new Fall Class at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) - "Fashion Art and Design."  It is basically a drawing class and we spent the first 2 hour class drawing the very elongated figures used in fashion design.  A "normal" person is 7.5 heads long.  A fashion illustration body is 10 heads long - mostly due to long legs.  I'll post my homework for next week soon to demonstrate the differences.  I already love the class.

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September 6, 2019

Line of Action Drawings - Summer 2019

I really enjoy figure drawing and during the last few years I've been sketching from photos after breakfast.  I tear scrap copy paper into 4 pieces, and leave a stack on the breakfast counter, with a pencil, pen, and small scissors.  This is a very low stakes exercise - which makes it fun!  These are some of the drawings I did during the summer - cut out and glued into my sketchbook.  

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September 3, 2019

Rained Out Again Wed August 28th

This summer Wednesdays are the rainiest day of each week.  There was time in the late morning to draw some of the flowers in bloom in Wagner Park, but the rain began before Figure Al Fresco began and we left.  

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August 27, 2019

Another Visit to the T.C. Cannon Exhibit at NMAI NYC

I returned to the National Museum of the American Indian (NYC) last Wednesday to again see the T.C. Cannon exhibit which closes on September 16th.  There are so many paintings, prints, and drawings that I wanted to add to my sketchbook, just to capture what I loved about the exhibit.  These are 3 very small images from the massive mural he painted 1 year before he died:  Epochs in Plains History: Mother Earth, Father Sun, the Children Themselves.  My photo of this painting appears below.

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The images that I painted are in the very center of this massive painting which covers one wall of a Gallery.  

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There is an entire corridor of smaller drawings, paintings, prints in the exhibit and I chose this one to remember this part of the exhibit.  I learn so much from drawing other artists work and looking through my sketchbooks brings back so many memories of these educational gallery visits.  He did a quick pen drawing colored with markers, I used watercolor.

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August 23, 2019

Figure Al Fresco - NO RAIN! Aug 19, 2019

Finally, a thunderstorm was forecast, but I visited the TC Cannon exhibit at the National Museum of the American Indian and Figure Al Fresco in Battery Park City again.  It rained the last 3 Wednesday afternoons, but yesterday the rain held off until dinnertime and figure drawing was possible.

These are two of the drawings I did of Marilyn at figure drawing.  This one was a 20 minute sketch and since I get bored after 10-15 minutes, I sketched a little of the background.

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My favorites are usually 5 or 10 minute poses because I work quickly and still have time to use a waterbrush for shading.

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August 20, 2019

Wanted to Draw It, Not Wear It

It is almost time for the Metropolitan Museum of Art Annual Fashion Show to close.  I wanted to go through it very quickly, even though I wasn't sure what "Camp" fashions would be like.  This is a dress designed by Paul Poiret and I immediately decided that I wanted to draw it, but never wear it.  I loved many of his fashions in the Poiret show at the Met in 2007 and was happy to see one of his designs again.

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Shirley Parker Levine
New York City

September 2019

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