Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Como Park Conservatory and Basilica of St. Mary

8/17/15 ink, watercolor (Como Park Conservatory)

On the one day of our trip to the Twin Cities that was neither too hot nor too wet (see the earlier post for day 1), we spent a beautiful afternoon at Como Park Conservatory and Zoo in St. Paul. The rest of my party opted to spend most of their time viewing the many and varied plant exhibits while I stayed outside to sketch the conservatory itself. A hundred years old, it’s a grand and elegant building of glass. (I’ve never had the nerve to sketch our own conservatory at Seattle’s Volunteer Park, but given that Como Park’s is much larger, I probably should stop procrastinating.)

8/17/15 ink, colored pencil
After finishing that sketch, I had a choice: Catch up with my party in the plant exhibits? Or hit the small but well-designed zoo instead? It didn’t take me long to choose animals over plants. Although much tinier than Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo where I sketch often, Como Park’s zoo has wonderful exhibits of orangutans and gorillas that I could see close-up. In addition, the zebra was close enough that I could sketch its pattern – something I’ve had difficulty doing at Woodland Park’s much larger African exhibit.

(See more animals of the rural kind in tomorrow's post.)

I have to share what I consider to be a small urban sketching victory: I was sketching small studies of mice and frogs when I noticed a young girl watching me intently. Shortly afterwards, I heard her asking her mother, “Mom, do you have your notebook?” and later in a different part of the zoo, I saw her sketching in that notebook! It’s the unofficial part of our manifesto: “Encourage others to sketch by being an example.”

It poured most of the next day, so one of our indoor activities was visiting the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis. I’d love to go back sometime and sketch the exterior, but for this trip, I settled for the main altar. 

8/17/15 ink
8/17/15 inks
8/18/15 inks, watercolor (Basilica of St. Mary)

1 comment:

  1. Glad you remained outside to sketch. Wonderful job on the observatory! Love the windows!

    Somewhere I missed why you are in Minnesota. Are you with your husband or a group of sketchers?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...