Open Studios and Sketchcrawls

It’s hard to believe that we are already a full month into the “new” year! I really don’t know where my time disappears to?! Sometimes I am convinced the fairies must be sneaking in and stealing the hours away from me! 😀

I’ve been wanting to sit and write a post about my 2015 “intentions for the year”, but I just haven’t gotten around to it yet.  Now that I am working for Paint Nite, a lot of what I used to think of as my “spare time” is taken up by preparing for my weekly sessions out at a couple of local pubs/cafes, where I teach non-artists how to paint something they’ll be proud to hang on their wall at home, all while we are all having a few drinks, laughing with friends and boogie-ing to some great tunes.

Paint Nite fun!

Paint Nite fun!

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Still, despite my busy-ness with Paint Nite, I have managed to squeeze a few hours in for myself and my own artistic pursuits over the past month. I’ve had a couple of graphite drawings that I’ve been working on as (very late Christmas) gifts for my daughter and my son. Both are large, fairly detailed drawings (16-ish x 20-ish), and so they’re not going quickly. I’ve not been able to share them on Facebook as I don’t want my kids to see them and have their surprises ruined.  But since I don’t think they can be bothered to keep up with my blog, I will take a chance and share a little peek at part of one of the drawings I am working on (shh! Don’t tell Alanna it’s here! LOL):

 

The drawing I am currently working on.

The drawing I am currently working on.

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My local art society has been hosting an Open Studio twice monthly for the past year or so and finally I was able to participate for the first time last week. Working as an artist from home is such a solitary way of life, that often I can go days, or weeks or even longer without seeing anyone but family.  To be honest, I love my alone time. I need it as badly as I need air to breathe and am quite sure that I would go stark raving mad if I didn’t have it. But, every now and then, I definitely feel the need to raise my head from the cloud of graphite dust, and check to see what the rest of the world is up to. Of course, since I am doing Paint Nites now, I get to “party” with people fairly regularly, and that’s a lot of fun. I also do get to socialize very often with family and friends, which I love and enjoy. But spending time sharing and networking with other artists in a “non-competitive” and relaxed environment is something I have been craving deeply for some time, and that is exactly what the Open Studio time offers. So, I packed up my pencils and one of the drawings I’ve been working on and joined several other artists for a very enjoyable day of gabbing, laughing, sharing and networking while we each worked on our own separate projects. I am definitely hooked now and really can’t wait for next month’s Open Studio!

 

Open Stdio fun with the ladies of Arteast.

Open Studio fun with the ladies of Arteast.

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Something else I have been wanting to share with other artists for what seems like forever, is the World Wide Sketchcrawl, which is an urban sketching event that takes place every three months or so. I’ve often done WW Sketchcrawls alone, but really, sketching alone on WW Sketchcrawl day isn’t much different than sketching alone on a non WW Sketchcrawl day! 😀 Essentially, it’s just the same old, same old. But this time, I managed to round up four other artists as interested in urban sketching as I am, and we made a date of it and celebrated the 46th World Wide and 1st Ottawa Sketchcrawl together. What a fantastic day we had!

 

My four sketch buddies bundled up against the frigid weather.

My four sketch buddies bundled up against the frigid weather.

It’s extremely cold here in Ottawa … -33C (with windchill), so despite the fact that it was a gorgeous, bright sunny day, it was far too cold to spend any time sketching outside — unless we wanted to lose our fingers to frostbite, which none of us cared to do! We considered heading to a museum, but I know from experience that museums on frosty Saturdays are packed to the rafters with parents desperate to keep their kids amused while avoiding sledding in such intense cold. So instead, we headed down to a Second Cup and spent the morning there drinking coffee and nibbling pastries while trying to unobtrusively sketch other customers doing the same thing we were doing (minus the sketching, of course).

At Second Cup

Sketches done at Second Cup

In the afternoon we headed over to the Clocktower Pub for lunch and more sketching. We had such a wonderful time that we’ve decided to form a permanent Ottawa Urban Sketchers group and get together at least once monthly for some urban sketching.

At Clocktower Pub

Sketches done at Clocktower Pub

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Am off to another Paint Nite tonight so will hope to have an afternoon soon to update my blog again re my 2015 Intentions! Enjoy your Super Bowl Sunday!

4 comments to Open Studios and Sketchcrawls

  • You been one busy lady and that was only the first month, you go girl!

    I had a super time at the Sketchcrawl, you ladies rock!
    And it was a good day to sip coffee and draw. Looking forward to next time.

  • wow…you are one busy person Lissa…I can see why the time has flown!!! I love the idea of the open studio time with other artists, what a great idea!!!

  • Mari, I had such a great time too and am really looking forward to our next “Sketch-cursion” LOL

    Kathryn, I am TOOOO busy! LOL The Open Studio thing is SO nice! Loved seeing what everyone else is working on, trying new tools, etc.

  • Thanks for sharing the drawing progress. It looks like it’s well worth waiting for.