Wednesday, May 3, 2023

U Village Near-Abstraction


4/27/23 University Village

Meeting a friend at U Village, I arrived a few minutes early at the sunny commons area filled with umbrella’d tables. When I’ve sketched there in the past, I’ve been more methodical about drawing the tables with corresponding umbrellas and making sure tables and chairs have the appropriate number of legs. My tendency is to work one area at a time, then move on.

Since I had only a few minutes, I took a different approach here: First I drew all the umbrella tops with a white pencil (I would have preferred to use a Gelly Roll, but it failed me again). Then I took out a brush pen and filled in all the umbrella shadows at once, then drew all the vertical poles, then the tables and chairs, and finally a few people. It was an efficient, nearly abstract, assembly-line way of sketching. I hope the result still evokes the feeling of the place.


  1. I've never gotten gelly-rolls to work reliably. I've stopped buying them for that reason. I like the idea of drawing all the umbrellas first. Of course, I've always drawn them last [sigh].

    1. What do you use for white lines instead? I keep using Gelly Rolls because they have the most opaque white ink with a fine tip that I can find. I haven't found an acceptable replacement -- though I've tried many.


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