Drawing in the Roman Theatre in Arles

Sketch of Roman theatre Arles in FranceArles is dotted with ruins and I have decided there is nothing like a good ruin. Actually flippant attitudes aside, many of the monuments at Arles are UNESCO world heritage listed.

The other day we visited the Roman theatre and off to one side is a collection of carved and plane stones.  I had a delightful time sitting in the shade of  a tree, drawing the image above. Click the image to see a larger version

This is what the travel journal page spread looked like. The green half disk is a paper patty that held a lavender  cake – yes that is right a a cake made with lavender. It was lovely.

photo of travel journal page spread

Sharing a few travel sketches

Well I am being nagged by a good friend to share more travel sketches. To be honest I am finding it easy to keep the travel journal but hard to fit sketching into the day. In fact I have already filled one book and half way through the second, but it is mainly writing!

The first sketch I would like to share is one I did while on a day visit to Chartres. We went of course to see the cathedral. (Jerry has not yet shared his photos of the day so I am getting in first – pokes tongue at Jerry and chants nyah nyah )

Garden behind Chartres CathedralI discovered a little park behind the cathedral and spent a pleasant hour and half using my  inktense pencils and Pitt pens to represent what I saw. (Click on the image and you will see a larger version)

page spreadThis is the page spread.

Next I discovered an art shop on St Germain Boulevard and could not resist buying gesso. I had not packed gesso as I was trying to travel light but I have wanted to create some images that were more impressionistic to describe my mood in Paris. So I indulged in a little pot of gesso and some very cheap stiff brushes to apply it.

image of collageThis collage is intense pencils, pitt pens, gesso and collaged paper scraps from tourist brochures. The intense pencils responded will to being moistened by the gesso. I liked it and will explore more  this accidently discovered technique. (Click on the image and you will see a larger version)

page spreadThis is the page spread

Next is a small figure I drew in the Louvre. We went back there on Friday as  it is a place you can never really see all of! We spent quite a bit of time in the Greek Etruscan and Roman antiquities section. I fell in love with this cycladic figurine which dates from between 2700 BC – 3000 BC. (Click on the image and you will see a larger version)

Cycladic figureThis is the page spread.

Anyway I hope people have enjoyed these pages. As I say I have filled one book and am half way through the second. If I have time I will make a video of a flip through the pages.


A visit to Notre Dame

Every morning we can hear the bells of Notre Dame ring out. Still jet lagged we took a stroll through the district and investigate this historic building. As we approached Notre Dame noticing the line for the tower tour was short Jerry decided he would do the climb as he has always wanted to photograph the gargoyles. I decided to explore the interior of the building. So sketchbook in hand I headed off to see what was to be seen inside while Jerry camera in hand climbed the building to see what was to be seen on the outside.

If you sketch, it is easy to be overwhelmed as the cathedral is considered to be one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture for a reason! I walked around then decided to tackle just a small section. I had about an hour and wanted to keep the goal to do some drawing here realistic.

travel journal sketch Notre DameThere was a service in progress and I sat in front of a pillar and quietly sketched. I really enjoyed this as I got to sit and quietly observe not only the cathedral but how the place was used by both worshipers and tourists. To be honest it is the sort of place I could return to every day for month and barely sketched any of the building at all.

Anyway I hope you enjoy the sketch.

Diana Boyer’s sketchbooks

Diana Boyers sketchbooks 2Diana Boyer kept sketchbooks recording everyday life around the farm on Bobbara Creek, in the Binalong district of southern New South Wales. The National Museum of Australia now houses some of them.

Diana Boyers sketchbooks
Apparently she carried pencils, ink, brushes and watercolours everywhere so she could record what she saw on the spot. Trained as a botanist in Argentina Diana Boyer’s observed the property’s changing landscape, native plants and local animals, so that her sketchbooks reveal the how climate change impacted on the environment.

Diana Boyers sketchbooks4In 2006 Diana Boyer created Time Change, an animation using a series of small watercolour painting some of which are on display.

Diana Boyers sketchbooks
In 2007 the Boyers left Bobbara Creek and now live in the UK. The sketchbooks and artworks were donated to the National Museum of Australia by Diana Boyer in 2008

Visit the National Museum of Australia website for an article about Diana Boyer with links to her animation Time Change