A Whirlwind Trip

I’ve been so busy these past couple of weeks, that the time has just flashed past . . . and once again I am falling behind in my posting here.

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DSC 140 – from imagination – graphite in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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As the secretary for the Pencil Art Society, a lot of my time this month has been taken up by managing the membership, which comes up for renewal on June 1.

DSC 141 – from my own ref – graphite in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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Usually once the membership drive is over every year, my time is pretty much my own again, but this year the 2016 PAS International Open Juried Exhibition closes on June 30 . . . and Yikes!! I haven’t even started a drawing to submit yet!!!

DSC 142 – from a stock ref – graphite in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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I finally came up with an idea of what I want to draw to submit for the show, and was supposed to meet with my model/daughter last week to get my ref photos . . . but her schedule has been even crazier than mine and she had to cancel at the last minute. So we’re supposed to meet tonight instead. Am keeping everything I have that is crossable, crossed, that I get the shots I need, as she is going out of town very soon and won’t have time for a redo.

DSC 143 – from my own ref – watersoluble graphite in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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Hubby and I decided to take advantage of the long holiday weekend here last week to steal some time for ourselves and get away to visit friends out of town, in London and Sarnia. We left early on the Friday evening, and because we didn’t want to do the almost 8 hour drive from Ottawa to London in one shot, we stopped overnight at the charming 1840s MacKechnie House Bed & Breakfast in Cobourg. We had stopped very briefly in Cobourg for an hour or so when on our way back from a trip to Toronto that we’d taken just before we got married, and it was such a lovely place that we’d always really wanted to go back . . . so some 35ish years later, we finally did! 😀

The sunset we witnessed before we arrived at the B&B was so spectacular that I just had to paint it before I went to sleep that night.

DSC 144 – from my own ref – watercolour in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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The owner of the B&B is an art lover and had a beautiful collection of eclectic pieces, but my favourite was in the dining room where we had breakfast. On the end wall, at the head of the table, were three huge graphite drawings, which had been mounted on wood panels. The owner told us that a man who’d lost both his sons in the (first or second? can’t remember now) world war had commissioned an artist to do the drawings as patterns for a stained glass window that he would have created to honour the memory of his sons — who are represented on each side by St. Michael and St. George, with the Christ in the centre, representing their sacrifice. It’s hard to tell from my crummy photo, but the drawings are highly detailed and just took my breath away! What an absolute treat it was to see them! Unfortunately they weren’t signed and the owner didn’t know who the artist was.

panels1

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After breakfast we checked out and drove down to the St. Lawrence, where we strolled along the rocky shore for a bit, before I sat for a while to sketch. I’d discovered this thin, pointed piece of charred wood that someone had obviously used for a beach fire, and couldn’t resist using it for an experimental sketch.

The piece of burnt wood / charcoal I found on the beach.

 

DSC 145 – from life – burnt wood/charcoal in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

I followed my not so successful experiment up with a watercolour sketch of the same scene.

DSC 146 – from life – watercolour in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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Finally we said goodbye to Cobourg and arrived in London for a much too short, but sweet visit with my very dear artist friend and PAS Director, Darlene Jordan Pfaff. After a lovely supper and reluctant goodbyes, we completed our road trip up to Sarnia to visit with my other dear artist friend and PAS member, Manon Adams. We spent such a fun, relaxing couple of days together,  and it was over far too soon.

DSC 147 – from my own ref – graphite in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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On the way home to Ottawa, we stopped to stay overnight at a Comfort Inn in Gananoque. After dinner we strolled down to sit by the water and I managed to get in this little sketch as the sun was just starting to go down.

DSC 148 – from life – watercolour in 5.5″ x 8.5″ Stillman & Birn Alphas series sketchbook.

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Despite how busy I’ve been, and consequently, how difficult it is sometimes to fit my Daily Sketch Challenge in, I am admittedly so proud of myself for not having yet missed a day! I really doubted I would be able to stick with it . . . and soooo often I have been tempted to give it up, as it can really be hard to fit them in when I am busy. I contemplated stopping them now, because if I have any hope at all of finishing something for the upcoming PAS show deadline, I know I’m going to have to devote every spare moment I have to completing a “serious” drawing . . . but, I must confess, at this point I think I have become somewhat addicted to my daily sketches and I just don’t want to give them up! LOL

However, as a compromise, for the next little while, at least until I can HOPEFULLY finish something to submit to the PAS show, I think I won’t be blogging. Instead, I will try as much as possible (but no promises!) to post my sketches on Instagram (and will share them to Facebook). I have actually come to really look forward to my weekly-ish blog posts and have gotten fairly good at posting pretty regularly, so am not really pleased at the thought of getting out of that habit . . . but it’s just so time-consuming to photograph everything with a decent camera and then blog about it. So, with all I have on my plate right now, I am going to be cutting myself some slack and taking a little hiatus from blogging for the next month while I focus my time on “drawing seriously”! LOL See you back here in a month! 🙂

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2 comments to A Whirlwind Trip

  • I’m proud of you Lissa…you’ve done so well with sketching and posting…but you deserve a break!! And it’s for a good cause…the exhibition!! Can hardly wait to see your “serious” drawing!! 😀

  • Thanks, Kathryn! I can’t wait to see it either!! LOL Keeping everything crossed that I can finish it!! 🙁