Monthly Archives: April 2015

sketching with Erin Hill’s class

Today I was invited to join my Sydney friend Erin Hill at a Sketching Class she was holding in Melbourne. It was a wonderful opportunity to catch up with her after my first eight months in Melbourne, as well as meet a lovely group of Melbourne sketchers. It is always inspirational to chat with people in Erin’s classes as they are all so motivated to sketch and days like today are often the starting point of something fantastic for them.
25Apr15 page 1
25Apr15 page 2

I started the day with my usual journaling in my sketchbook. These were sketched in moments when I had the opportunity : while waiting for the train and then while waiting for the Sketch class to assemble.







Most of the day I drew in my own style, but later in the morning I joined in the class with their ink pen and watercolour pencil experiments.

25Apr15 page 3

25Apr15 page 4

25Apr15 page 7

25Apr15 page 5

25Apr15 page 8

Walking home in the rain from the train station. Local football fans were also walking home. They had been outside all day, while I was cosy and dry inside with my new sketching friends

books – work in progress

This is about a drawing I am currently creating. (I don’t like to use the term “working on” because it is not work at all).

This week I have been drawing in my lunch breaks. I usually draw for about half an hour. This is the result at the end of the third day.

17Apr15 books wip closeup

I took my watercolour pencils and A4 size University paper (I believe it is produced by St Cuthberts Mill in the UK). I sat at a table next to these law reports and started drawing. These are at eye level and all the shelves are full of books. On the shelf there are books either side of these and they are neatly and tightly shelved.


I did not really think before I started drawing and now I have some decisions to make. I thought I would share my options with you now and would love to hear any suggestions anyone has.

  • How many more books to draw?
  • 17Apr15 books wip1

    Current drawing on A4 page

    I only have a limited space on the paper to use. This is what is looks like on the A4 page.  I have photocopied the drawing and experimented with HB pencil for potential composition. I realised one of my first ideas would not work as I did not have room on the page to draw a few books lying down on the right side, stacked up.

    I have the options of adding more books of different heights and thicknesses and/or have some books leaning.

    19Apr15 test

    I could try this

    19Apr15 test1

    Or this, or a combination

    • How to finish the sides – I have the choice of fading the colour and lines at the edges  to have an unfinished look  OR finishing each  book and having solid colour to the edge of each book.
    • How to finish top – The books are on shelves and the books disappear into darkness of the shelf. I don’t want this is dominate the page.
    • How to finish the bottom – The books are sitting on shelves. Do I finish at the base of the book or include the shelf line.

    I am looking forward to any suggestions and will share the completed drawing when I have finished it!



    19Apr15 colours

    These are the colours I am using. There are 120 watercolour pencils in the Faber Castell range. I carry and use 26 colours in my pencil wrap and they suit me perfectly. I can usually create the colours I need by blending. This is done on the page or off the tip of the two pencils on the waterbrush.

    The pigments can be completely dissolved, and will then behave similar to watercolour paints. The paint becomes permanent when dry, enabling other layers of colour to be built up without causing it to dissolve again. Or they can sharpened to a fine tip. Great for broad brushstrokes or finer detail.

    However I have to keep remembering to sharpen my pencil. They get blunt very easily when using the waterbrush to take the colour off the tip of the pencil.

    I build up the colour gradually. However, as you can see, I also draw in darker areas early as it gives me a sense of where I am going and what the drawing is going to look like when complete.

    Here is a previous work in progress library drawing
    and other book and library drawings, some of which you can purchase on my Etsy shop

    Urban Sketchers Melbourne

    Urban Sketchers Melbourne met on Saturday 11 April 2015 , with special guest visitors Paul Wang from Singapore and Liz Steel from Sydney.

    Sketching the  urban Sketchers listening and watching Paul speak

    Sketching the urban Sketchers listening and watching Paul speak

    A group of 60 Melbourne Urban Sketchers (new and old members) met at North Melbourne Library to listen to a presentation and view a slide show by Paul. Paul Wang is an Urban Sketcher based in Singapore. His paintings are colourful and energetic have a look at .

    My good friend Liz from Sydney also contributed to the discussion, sharing her thoughts and enthusiasm.


    We then sketched in the beautiful weather for 2 1/2 hours met up for a group photo and discussion. See some of their sketches
    Some of us continued on til later. I had a prolific day, sketching from 9.30 am to 7pm, completing nine sketches. I love drawing !
    I also spent the day catching up with friends and meeting new sketchers.

    USK-ers gathering

    USK-ers gathering


    North Melbourne Town hall


    a bit of splattering

    a bit of splattering

    11 Apr 15me staring at wall (

    me staring at the brickwork, drawing the wall (photo: Evelyn Yee)


    detail of a brick wall at Auction Rooms cafe

    detail of a brick wall at Auction Rooms cafe


    11Apr15 USK North Melbourne7
    11Apr15 USK North Melbourne8








    A BIG thank you to Paul, Liz, Evelyn and everyone else who was involved in organising this wonderful event !

    Easter greetings

    Happy Easter everyone.

    1Apr15  bunny3

    Each year I draw something for Easter. (see past years drawings )  In the last year I have been fortunate enough to move to Melbourne and into an apartment block where one of my neighbours  owns a chocolate shop called The Chocolate Box (based in Melbourne, but  wonderful online store too !)  She kindly invited me to draw anything from her store. It was a visual treat to wander around and look through the array of eggs, bunnies, chocolates and treats, all beautifully packaged.

    30mar15  bunny

    I decided on a little soft and fluffy toy bunny, some traditional chocolate eggs in foil and a chocolate nest of eggs. I find that foil is really difficult to draw, with all the shininess, so I did not choose too many of those.

    29mar15 bashful bunny and eggs
    30mar15  eggs up close






    I  loved the Mini Half Egg with Hazelnut Praline Birds Eggs. Many of you will know how much I love drawing birds nests, feathers and eggs, so this seemed the perfect choice. 

    1apr15 bunny2

    I really enjoyed drawing the texture of the soft bunny and the colour of the chocolate. The foil was as difficult as I remembered!
    What have you been drawing this Easter?