May 26, 2017

Drawing "Constantly Moving" People in Venice 2017

These are the sketchbook pages that I did of constantly Moving Preople, as contrasted with my Architectural Sketches done while sitting and having coffee, wine, or dinner.  I like figure drawing and I love trying to capture some aspect of people who I'm watching when they are in constant motion. 

Musica Palazzo:  The Barber of Seville at a Palazzo on the Grand Canal.  There was a small audience and moved through 4 rooms as we watched.  I was never more than 10 feet away from the singers.  Fun!


Our Tour Guide from a long walk through Cannaregio:


Cellist From Chamber Orchestra at Chiesa San Vidal - mostly Vivaldi Concertos.  Excellent and we even got an encore. 


I almost filled my sketchbook, but thought these 3 blog posts captured my favorite Venice scenes and how I made time for sketching while on vacation. 

May 23, 2017

More Sketchbook Pages From Venice 2017

We had a beautiful view from our apartment balcony, and could even see a portion of the Grand Canal.  I went out for a morning look and quick photo each day, and finally sketched the scene.  I've never painted red tile roofs close-up before, however, and after finding a excellent online tutorial, I waited until we came home to finish the painting.  The tiles really looked that varied and were so many colors.

Painting terracotta roof tiles



View of Window on the Side Wall of Ca' Rezzonico Museum from Our Apartment:



Here are two additional sketchbook pages from the final days in Venice - one drawn while drinking wine in the late afternoon and the other at our last dinner before departure.  These are more examples of just drawing what was in front of me.

Side wall of Chiesa Zanipoli (Castello Sestiere) as we sipped wine in an outdoor restaurant:  


My view from dinner in the garden at Corte Sconta Restaurant- a favorite of ours from a prior visit. 


May 19, 2017

Venice Vacation 2017

We just returned from Venice - 9 nights in a lovely apartment in Dorsoduro sestiere.  It is a wonderful section of Venice - and it felt like being in a small town.  I love keeping a travel sketchbook and was able to fill 20 pages with watercolor paintings while we were there.  My mantra - just draw what is in front of you!  Thank you Sketchbook Skool for that sage advice.

When I travel with my husband we either stop for coffee late morning or a glass of wine late afternoon - and walk enormous distances each day.  I sketched buildings when sitting in Campos, enjoying the view and people while drawing.

Here are some of the sketches done while sitting over coffee and relaxing.  In most instances I sketched, took a photo for colors, and then painted them later.  I buy my husband a book of NY Times Crossword Puzzles before we leave for vacation, and he is happy doing one while we drink our coffee!

On Novo Strata in Cannaregio  


In Campo Santa Margherita: 


In Camp San Barnaba: 


We were having coffee on Giudecca island, talking to another couple from the UK, and I sketched the church across the Giudecca canal.  That really helps to simplify an image! 


I also sketched people - a tour guide, opera performers, and a chamber orchestra cellist while they were moving constantly.  I'll include those in my next blog post. 


May 16, 2017

Venice Sketchbook Pages - 2012

Painting some Venice scenes from my photos from an earlier visit helped me fill my sketchbook during my 2012 visit.  I don't know why I had such a "fear of failure" before our visit, perhaps my love of the city would make it hard for me to even paint the first page.  Instead I concentrated on just capturing our visit by painting what was in front of me, as a visual memory, instead of looking for the iconic Venice sketches (like Basilica San Marco).

Here are a few of my sketchbook pages from that visit - reposted.

View from our rental apartment living room: 



Campo Santa Margherita where we stopped one afternoon for a glass of wine:



Gondolier Fashions sketched over several days:



One of many gorgeous masks in a lit store window as we were returning late one evening from dinner:



A 7AM trip to the Rialto Market to buy fish for dinner:



An early morning walk and a quick sketch of "Salute," leaning on a garden wall on the opposite side of the Grand Canal: 


May 12, 2017

2012 Venice Travel Preparation

We love Venice and celebrate some wedding anniversaries there.  This month we are going again and I decided to post my previous Venice sketchbook "anticipation pages." Artist Laure Ferlita describes them here in her blog. 

I wasn't sketching or keeping a visual journal during my earliest Venice visits, so before our visit in 2012 I slowly painted from my earlier photos to "practice" and then made myself a book from the finished paintings.  This blog post details my process- binding previously painted folios into a hard cover book:

And here are a few of the pages from that book. 









May 9, 2017

Making a New Sketchbook for Venice 2017

I love to make watercolor sketchbooks and I frequently recycle an old book for travel sketchbooks - usually one that costs only $2 on the outside carts at The Strand bookstore in NYC.

I made a travel sketchbook that I loved for our 2012 Venice trip.  The entire process is explained in photographs at this link.

I searched for 6 months for another book to recycle for an upcoming Venice visit and finally settled on this one.  It is a Kate Spade book on "Occasions" and I was able to save two folios about celebrating Anniversaries to incorporate into my new book.  I finally chose it because of the price ($2), size, the condition of the cover, and my approaching vacation deadline.  I think I will always love my "Italian Dreams" Venice sketchbook more, but look forward to using this one too!

The Cover: 


The End Papers - which make me think of Venice's Carnivale: 


There are 36 140lb Fabriano Artistico Soft Press pages inside.  This is a Maurice Sendak Illustration I painted from Mickey in the Night Kitchen which I like to have on the title page with my name, address, and contact information in case my sketchbook gets lost.


I also try to include a few of the folios from the original book I'm recycling.  Here is one part of each of the original Folios that I incorporated into the sketchbook: 

Anniversary Gifts: We've been married so long that our anniversary gift is on the bottom of the other half of this page!


Wine is Devine:  In anticipation of many lovely afternoons sitting on a canal or in a campo in Venice.


May 5, 2017

Illustration Class Final Project

The FIT Watercolor Comps Illustration class is almost over, and we each have to do a final project using the techniques we learned and practiced in this class.  I decided to work more on my imaginary friends Axel and Alice.  Axel was "born" during a homework assignment in Sketchbook School, taught by Fabio Consoli.

Here is my blog post describing the project.

I have many ink drawings I've done of Axel and his friend Alice and last summer even sketched them on envelopes for camp letters to grandchildren.


I've considered putting together a book for my grandchildren from some of the many drawings I've done, and my final project is a reworked painting of the original. 



May 2, 2017

2017 Remains of the Day Book

I took Mary Ann Moss' "Remains of the Day" online class many years ago to learn another technique for making books.  She has an online class that is self-paced and you really can make your own book after all of the videos. 

The books have a fabric cover, and random types of paper - including pages from brochures, calendars etc.  I use fabric pieces for the cover (cotton and silk) that I've dyed in surface design workshops, or at home, and usually select one piece of fabric and then build the colors from there. 

This is my 2017 book - closed and open to show the cover.



I decided to use my first book to record NYC art adventures with friends, and I'm shocked that I now have 6 finished volumes.  This year I actually debated whether I wanted to continue this series, and finally decided that I love making the book, and enjoy reliving our many museum exhibits and gallery visits at the end of the year. 

Here are two early pages from the 2017 book.  I have photos of my friends, from the art at exhibits, and even copies of our artwork. 


There are flaps on many of the pages, covering additional photos, and pockets attached to other pages to hold photos and random ephemera.


These are the 6 previous books - all full and now fat! 



April 28, 2017

Scribbles From a Juilliard Concert

My friend Eunice and I attended a concert by the Juilliard Historical Presentation Students in the 2 year Masters degree program.  It is held several times during the year as part of the Tuesdays at Twelve series at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church on Central Park West.  At most concerts it is difficult to see the performers and their instruments well enough to draw them.  These are scribbled drawings of several of the performers which were painted at home.


This is the drawing posted previously from the first of these concerts that I attended.   The unusual instrument is a theorbo - from the lute family.  I just realized that I sketched the same bassoonist at the recent concert.



Shirley Parker Levine
New York City

May 2017

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31      


Powered by
Movable Type 3.38