Category Archives: east melbourne

East Melbourne travel sketchwalk

If you have been reading my weekly blog recently, you will have noticed that the focus has been on my East Melbourne Library Travel Sketchbook exhibition and the associated Sketchwalks.

We had clear crisp skies to start the Sketchwalks each day on Friday and Saturday and everyone had their warm layers on. 

My two sketchwalks were wonderful experiences. Each day a group of 13 enthusiastic participants arrived and embraced the concept of travel sketching . After a short introduction to the watercolour pencils and the idea of travel sketching,  we headed out into crisp winter East Melbourne day, drawing trees, leaves, houses, fences, signs and whatever else attracted each person. They only had 15 minutes at each of the three locations, so it was all about getting marks and an impression down on paper. 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 A giant orange crane working in the street attracted some people on the Friday. It was not there on Saturday, so those Friday sketchers had really captured the moment !

Saturday sketchers had the football fans walking past on the way up to the MCG , so some sketched the scarves and team colours.

I think that most people finished the day with a new way of thinking about travel sketching and eager to put their newly found skills into practice, 

Each day we headed back to into the warmth of East Melbourne Library to chat, share and look through some other examples of sketchbooks (my own and published books) that I had brought in.  

They are not’ how to draw’ books, but rather show different people’s sketches and styles. I’ve put links if you are interested, I will often borrow a book from my local library before deciding to purchase it.

An Illustrated LIfe by Danny Gregory

Reportage and Documentary Drawing by Veronica Lawlor

London You’re Beautiful by David Gentleman 

Taking a Line for a Walk by Christopher Lambert

Drawing Paris by David George Holm

Manchester Sketchbook by Manchester Sketchers

An Eye on the Hebrides by Marie Hedderwick 

A great book to start drawing is Danny Gregory’s book  Creative License .   It will open your eyes to creativity and drawing. I return to it regularly to refocus and relearn.

Here are the links to my previous blogposts about the East Melbourne sketchwalks and my exhibition. 

Preparing for a travel sketchwalk 

East Melbourne Sketchbook 

Video of my East Melbourne Sketchbook

 

Happy sketching !

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

preparing for a travel sketchwalk

I am preparing for my local Travel Sketching ‘walk and talk’ that are on this Friday and Saturday. Both sessions (1pm -3.30pm ) of 15 people are fully booked out and there is a waiting list ! The wonderful Melbourne Library Service have promoted the sessions widely and there has been a lot of interest to run repeat sessions. 

Yesterday I spent time walking the route and stopping at my planned locations.We are only walking a few blocks and there is so much potential to draw. The idea of the day is to inspire people and  to open their eyes to the possibilities and concept of travel sketching (not to try to teach them to draw in two hours) .

 

We start in the Library, where I will talk a little about travel sketching, my own approach and what we will be doing. Melbourne Library Service is supplying watercolour pencils, waterbrush and paper for the day.

There are three stops along the way once we leave the Library, each with so many potential things to draw – up close or vistas. We will stop for about 20 minutes at each .  I walked the walk yesterday doing my own sketches which I can show as examples on the day.

These are very quick sketches, as sometimes when you travel you do not get the opportunity to sit down and sketch for a long time.  I also don’t want people to stress about the drawing and getting caught in the details. 

Stop 1
Stop 2

Stop 3.

After the final stop, the plan is to retrace our route back to the Library, giving people the chance to spend more time on a previous sketch or do some more. 

When we arrive back at the Library, afternoon tea awaits and also time to talk about the day and share experiences and sketches if people are comfortable with that. I also have some examples of published travel sketchbooks from my own collection for anyone to browse through to inspire  them to continue. Ad there is my own Travel Sketchbook display on in the Library. 

It will all be very flexible on the day. This is the first group talk I have given and it will be a positive learning experience for everyone. 

My only concern is the weather. It is Melbourne in winter. This week has been 14 degrees and sunny blue skies. Fingers crossed that this continues. The wet weather alternatives are not exciting. However that is all part of travel sketching. Sometime weather changes your plans and you have to make do with alternatives.  

video of my East Melbourne sketchbook

My East Melbourne sketchbook. 

A few weeks ago I wrote about creating sketchbook of my local area and now here is the finished sketchbook. 

It is installed in East Melbourne Library as part of my Travel Sketchbook exhibition which opens Tuesday until 31st July

I am also taking two local sketchwalks. Register here if you are in Melbourne.

Participants will be provided with a sketchbook and watercolour pencils . I plan to give a little talk about my travel sketching before heading outside with the group to walk around a planned route, stopping three  times along the way to sketch. We then walk back to the library for afternoon tea and a chat. 

This is the first time that I have videoed a sketchbook (or anything else!) . This was on my iphone and was not as straightforward as I thought.

I would like to try and do a video of me sketching so that you can see a fast sketch on the page or a longer drawing build up. Sometime in the future…

Sketching in Fitzroy Gardens

Today I sketched with a friend and her 12 year old grand daughter in Fitzroy Gardens. We are three people who love to draw. Not everyone is as fortunate as me to have the time and opportunity to draw. So it is always special to spend time with other people who do. We each had different styles and approaches. I feel that it is so important to encourage young people and anyone to draw, especially if they show an interest. 

Colours

Grass Green

Chrome Oxide Green

Earth Green

Hookers Green (it is too bright. I am going back to Derwent Mineral Green)

I love a combination of a sketch on location and then finer details of smaller objects. This works for travel sketching, as I will have a ticket, or souvenir (or leaf) that I can sketch at home. Trying to capture the autumnal colours that are coming through after our late summer. A sunny 26 degrees today. Perfect for outdoor sketching.

I also used a lot of Light Chrome Yellow, Light Yellow Ochre and Bistre ( a new colour in my pencils, replacing Raw Umber, which had too much yellow in it).

A combination of old and new, looking through trees to a modern building in Clarendon Street.

A family picnic across the park. I am not sure if I am finished yet. Maybe some more colour and detail. Alternatively I may move onto my next project……

All in watercolour pencil and also Lamy Safari Joy ink pen in Moleskine Watercolour sketchbook.

East Melbourne Art Deco walking tour

Yesterday, on a beautiful autumn morning, that felt like summer, I went on a two hour walking tour of Art Deco East Melbourne . With hat, sunburn cream, sunglasses, waterbottle and walking shoes about 9 nine of us met to be guided through the suburb of East Melbourne by the friendly and knowledgeable Mark & Shelley from Melbourne Architours. Of course, I also took my Moleskine watercolour sketchbook, Lamy Safari ink pen and watercolour pencils (in their pencil wrap).  I was not sure of the opportunities that I would get to sketch, but came prepared!

 

We were given a wonderful map of the Art Deco houses that they would be guiding us to.  I decided to draw on the map instead of in my sketchbook. At this stage i was still not sure what opportunities I would have to sketch. At our first stop, away from the traffic, our guides provided a history of Melbourne architecture and explained what Art Deco is. It appeared that we were going to be there for  while, so I stood at the back of the group and sketched most of them. 

As we started walking I realised that I was not going to be able to sketch on the tour. I wanted to listen, learn and ask questions. I then had the idea that I would retrace out steps after the tour and sketch. So I enjoyed the tour as we explored the suburb. All done in freehand ink- no pencil – hence the wobbly lines and suspect perspective. 

 East Melbourne is close to the city and home to some of Melbourne’s earliest houses. It has a variety of architectural styles from Gothic, Victorian, Federation,  Art Nouveau, Art Deco, California bungalow through to Moderne (and combinations of many) . It was wonderful to have the social and architectural history explained to us as well as  the growth and development of the suburb, We were very fortunate to have two locals, Diane and Ian from East Melbourne Group and East Melbourne Historical Society on the tour, who were able to provide extra insight into local matters and the changes that have been proposed and fought along the way to protect and improve East Melbourne’s  heritage and amenity. 

I will definitely be taking another tour with Melbourne Architours and also will be looking closer at the buildings I walk past everyday. The East Melbourne Historical Society has published some very informative books about the suburb. Perhaps I need to carry the publications around with me everyday (along side of my pencils and sketchbook) to refer to as I walk to work. There is so much history that I walk past everyday in Melbourne without appreciating its significance.