Two weeks ago, there was another sketch crawl in Heerlen (Netherlands). (I am rather late posting this.) It was again the occasion of the annual market in the town and this time the focus was the Art Market in Geleenstraat. 18 Sketchcrawlers of three nationalities and a wide age range met in the early afternoon and drew together in some rare spring sunshine for a few hours, accompanied by a brass band with a wide repertoire.
Here is a shot of some of the sketchers in action. The band was a favourite subject during the afternoon.
The drawings below were made on location but the colours were spruced up post-crawl using Ecoline fluid watercolours. I have found a way to use these on location: buy a palette/tray with a series of wells and a sealable lid and prepare the colours a few days ahead of first use by dropping enough liquid paint into each well to coat the bottom thickly. Leave to dry for a few days and then you have a transportable watercolour palette. Although the palette is supposedly water-tight, I have not tested this… I made the one below some time ago but have not used it on location because it is bulkier than I would like, although not heavy. I am looking for a smaller version with maybe 12 wells. That said, the empty wells can be useful for mixing colours. I apply the colour using a water brush.
The first drawing was made in front of the Hauptbahnhof (main railway station) in Aachen, while enjoying some spring sunshine between trains. The background contains rather fewer trees in reality! I didn’t have time to find out more about this sculpture but perhaps it is a link to Aachen’s role as host to an annual horse show, which is, apparently, quite famous. This photo of the horses has shown me that I drew them from totally the wrong direction. The horses’ legs were difficult to untangle visually and, in fact, it took some time before I saw the fifth horse (face just visible to the right of the second horse from the left). Many of their legs are in shadow and I have just hinted at them, which seems to work. There is a sense of movement in all except the one at the back which appears to have wandered out of a pantomime! I used a fineliner for this and all of the remaining drawings, except the one of the band, which was drawn using Inktense pencils and wash. The one below was drawn on a single page and the remainder were drawn across a double page spread in an A5 Hahnemühle sketchbook. The sketchbook is nearly full and the pages do not lie flat in the scanner, hence there is a noticeable mark in the centre of the double spreads. I have tried to minimise this but cannot totally avoid it without (sadly lacking) Photoshop skills. Photos produced washed-out colours.
The rest of the drawings were made in the Art Market in Geleenstraat, Heerlen.
And here they are the sketchcrawlers again perusing the collective sketchbooks on a spare market stall at the end of the day:
It was a sunny, if chilly, day and I was delighted to be invited back to participate in the sketchcrawl. Here is a link to the Sketchcrawl Limburg blog where the excellent drawings of other participants can be seen.