Monday, January 14, 2013

Museum Visit - Terracotta Warriors

Warrior Horse
Faber-Castell PITT pen size F with
Daniel Smith watercolor wash on
Fawn Stonehenge paper in handmade journal
Quick sketches of carriage horses
and a few objects with notes
Faber-Castell PITT pen size C & F
Fawn Stonehenge paper
On January 10th I visited the Minneapolis Institute of Art with my ceramics students to see the exhibit of China's Terracotta Warriors.  We went through the exhibit with a docent who had loads of information, but was in a rush to get us through to see what she had information about in a specific amount of time.  I sketched as much as I could while we were there but  was also supervising my students and trying not to loose our guide, who slid through the very crowded exhibit space like a ninja.
Our guide was quick to inform us that we could not take photos but she was surprised and had no real answer for me when I asked if I could sketch.  I was the first person she had ask about sketching the warriors.  I sketched and had no problems with museum staff at all.  I did add all the paint on these pages at home, I didn't need to get kicked out.
Quick sketches of  warriors
Faber-Castell PITT pen size F
Fawn Stonehenge paper 
I am planning on going back to the exhibit with my family so I can hopefully sketch more and also enjoy all of the objects I missed while being there with a guide and a school group.  
My two favorites of the day were the horses and the bronze birds both were beautiful and more memorable for me than the warriors themselves.  The exhibit is on display until January 27th and it is highly recommended to get your tickets before you go (I have had friends turned away because the gallery the exhibit is in is too full).  You can follow this link to the Minneapolis Institute of Art webpage for more information if you are interested in more information about the warriors and the exhibit.

Quick sketches of  the bronze Crane
Faber-Castell PITT pen size F
Daniel Smith watercolor washes (added at home)
Fawn Stonehenge paper in handmade journal 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

MetroSketchers Portrait Party

Stonehenge paper in handmade journal
Faber-Castell PITT pen size S
On Sunday, January 6th, about twenty artists from the MetroSketchers group met at a like minded couple's home to enjoy each-other's company and have a Portrait Party.    A Portrait Party is simply when a group of people get together and draw one another's portraits.  I managed to draw three of my fellow sketchers in about two hours (we met for three hours but I know I wasn't always sketching).  Part of me looks at these and wishes I had just done a contour line drawing and then added watercolor and another part of me is happy with my simply pen sketches.  Either way it was good practice for the upcoming Visual Journal Collective's Portrait Party on the 21st and lots of fun.

Stonehenge paper in handmade journal
Faber-Castell PITT pen size S
Stonehenge paper in handmade journal
Faber-Castell PITT pen size S

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Sketch Scavenger Hunt

Sketch folder and title sheet I made to place inside
my scavenger hunt collection, along with our topic list.
On Monday December 17th the MCBA Visual Journal Collective meeting was a sketch scavenger hunt.  Our first job as participants was to use a large map to put together a little folder to hold all of our sketches.  We created this by a series of folds using a large sheet of paper (in this case a map).  We then gathered a stack of pages pre-cut to fit nicely in the pockets of our new folder and off we went to find sketch-able subjects that fit the scavenger hunt list we were all using.

First sketch - people
Our list included people, landscape or scene, holiday, machinery or equipment, texture, and interesting negative space.  We had the whole of the MCBA space, the coffee shop, Open Book, the Loft, and if we were adventurous (and dressed warmly) we could go outside.  We had a fixed amount of time to sketch (about and hour and fifteen minutes) and all had to meet back with our finished sketches at a set time to look at what everyone had sketched.  We also voted on sketches - best complete collection, most unique, best mixed media.

Second sketch - landscape or scene
The sketch scavenger hunt was quite fun, although for the most part a more solitary way to spend our meeting than usual as we were all off in various parts of the building sketching on our own for most of the time and only together as a group for the folding and the voting.

Third sketch - negative space
It was fun to explore the building that I am in at least once a week in a new way.  I wondered to places that I usually do not think about, admired several displays of work that I did not know were hanging, and generally got re-inspired by the space as a whole.

Fourth sketch - holiday item
It was also very fun to gather and see everyone's sketches.  Even though I rarely saw someone else sketching and I never sketched the same thing at the same time as someone else, when we all looked at our work it was really interesting to see how many of us sketched the same subject at some point in the evening.  There were at least four drawings of the owl ornament (see above) that I sketched as my holiday item, and three of us had sketched the book binder (see below).  Seeing a different artist's perspective on the same subject is one of my favorite things, so seeing these different versions of sketches was one of the best parts of the evening for me and really made me wish that I had thought to bring a camera to the meeting. Roz Stendahl did bring a camera and she has posted on her blog (click her name to follow the link) about the event and has included photos of other artist's drawings and our different versions of the same subject.
Fifth sketch - machinery or equipment
I always enjoy our meetings and I am always excited when our gatherings result in a new art creation I get to take home to remember the event.  As you can see from the opening image in this post all of the sketches fit in the map folder along with an introduction sheet and the list of our hunt requirements.
I am also looking forward to our January meeting which will be a portrait party and we will all go home with a complete collection of all the portraits made that evening bound into a book, it is always one of my favorite events.

Sixth sketch - texture