Month: September 2018
Saturday was a glorious fall day, but hot, hot, HOT! Temps went into the low 90’s, but I decided to go to the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. This beautiful place behind the Walker Art Museum hosts some of the most amazing sculptures. Made from stone, brass, steel, fiberglass, bronze, and other materials, they are sure to capture the hearts of many. The iconic Spoon and Cherry sculpture sits in a pond with water spraying out of the cherry stem. The ducks loved it and so did we! In the distance is a huge electric blue rooster on a gigantic pedestal. I only captured these two, as I sat on a bench in the shade, listening to the city sounds as well as the tinkling of wind chimes that were blowing in the hot wind. Despite the heat, it was enjoyable to see priceless sculptures and soak up the surroundings!
On Sunday I went to the St. Croix Vineyard for fall festivities. In addition to live music by Funktion Junction, food, wine tasting, and games, I noticed this little vintage VW bus, decked out to be a florist’s shop on wheels. I liked the pale greenish color, striped awning, shiny chrome and colorful flowers. While the crowd crooned to 70’s hits, my feet wiggled and I sang oldies but goodies while I sketched the bus. Luckily I finished before the Grape Stomping contest, as crowds gathered around and obscured my view of the bus as they cheered on their favorite stompers! One guy went wild and jumped up and down in the grapes, spraying his pants, shirt and face with purple juice!
I was recently in Chicago so sketched some things while on the move. This first sketch was of a couple things—- my daughter’s drink and snacks on the airplane tray table, and later, after a lot of walking—-sitting on the edge of Navy Pier. I saw a friendly sea gull and the dock we were at held excursion boats. The boat left before I could sketch it, but I liked the shape and color of the weight on the dock (what is that thing called?).
The next day found me rattling along on the CTA (train) as we headed to Adler’s Planetarium. The train is a great place to sketch, especially when your subject falls asleep. I often look for sleeping people and peeping furtively at them, I can grab a quick sketch. I also drew a pile driver that was sitting in a construction zone from the floor of my hotel.
Finally, I attempted to sketch in the car, sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic on Lake Shore Drive. I was bored, we were going at a snail’s pace, so I opened the sketch book. I grabbed quick sketches and worked very loosely. First, a vegan hot dog stand and the umbrellas at Monroe street, then the back of a taxi, with a view of the Navy Pier ferris wheel, and finally a view of the northern shoreline. I observed tons of people out biking, jogging, walking, and on Segways speeding down the sidewalk. Past the beaches and there were tons of people out in the water and soaking up the sun. That’s for another day! Sometime I want to spend more time in Chicago and sketch even more of it!
Life is filled with stuff, and much of it is not rather beautiful. As an artist though, I see beauty in so many things that people would think are ugly. A line, a shape, a texture, a color….these things grab me. In July I sketched our old rusty wheelbarrow. Filled with sticks and water in an unattractive corner of our back yard, it could have sat in a junkyard. But the juxtaposition of the setting (getting a new fence and an old junky wheelbarrow) made me want to sketch it.
I visited my parents and sketched my dad’s old work area in the garage. Sitting on a John Deere riding lawn mower, I sketched objects that had interesting shapes and colors– containers, a car jack, and other stuff. My mom’s watering cans in her flower bed were an interesting gray color and I liked their shapes.
While at my parent’s house, I helped harvest peaches off their tree. Filled with greenish-orange peaches, many chewed up by shiny black beetles, they were not a picture of beauty. Yet they were created, and real. A tree produced them, and they had life. So I sketched them.
It’s amazing as you look around your life, there is always something to sketch, even the not-so-beautiful things can be things of great beauty!