Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Zuiderkerk Rehearsal

7/14/19 Zuiderkerk (from photo)

My friend Cathy McAuliffe has been gearing up for the Urban Sketchers Symposium in Amsterdam by sketching from Internet images of the city’s architecture and cityscape. The only time I did that kind of prep was when I was about a month out from our trip to France in 2015, and I decided to practice the Eiffel Tower from a photo. While drawing from a photo is never as challenging as drawing from life, it was helpful to study the tower’s proportions closely at my desk before I stood in awe in the Champ de Mars. 

Cathy inspired me to look for some images of Zuiderkerk, the 17th century church where the symposium activities will be centered. I deliberately chose a grainy, low-resolution image that obscured details so that I wouldn’t be able to get fussy about them (as I undoubtedly will in real life).

Technical note: As I sketched this with Caran d’Ache Museum Aquarelles in a Stillman & Birn Beta sketchbook, trying to be as loose at my desk as I will strive to be on the street, I started to fall in love with the paper’s tooth. I use Beta frequently at home when I sketch still lives with watercolor pencils, and I appreciate both its surface texture and sizing with wet media. I decided a while ago, though, that Zeta’s smoother surface would be more versatile with everything I use – graphite, markers, fountain pens and ballpoint pens as well as traditional and water-soluble colored pencils. But I enjoyed using Beta so much on this practice sketch that I started doubting the choice I made for this trip. It’s too late now – if you read my sketch kit prep post, you know that I’ve committed to the signatures I stitched with Zeta paper. At least I’ll still have my Beta landscape-format sketchbook with me in case I suddenly crave a little more texture.

1 comment:

  1. Great practice sketch. I like the Beta and will be bringing that with me to Amsterdam. Soon I will start to organize my supplies. :)


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