21 June 2012

I tried to think of a clever title. In the end, though, this post is about some pages in a sketchbook.

Click on any image to view a larger version.

It seems I have caught the sketching bug hard...again...finally!  It has been a long time, nearly two years, since I really sketched anything, and I missed it.  Since starting the nature drawing class, and gaining momentum with two days' sketching at the naval rendez-vous, I've been on a roll.
 Here are a few highlights, featured largely because they are in color, which makes them much easier to photograph.  There are also a couple neat pencil sketches from the past couple of weeks, but the camera doesn't pick up pencil very well.  I need to work on that, or cave in and get a decent flat-bed scanner (wish!).

None of these are posted as examples of what to do, or not to do.  They're all just for fun, and to record what the city looks like through a sketch book lens.  I am really delighted by the idea, though, that we'll have a stack of hand-made memories to thumb through later.

Looking up at the Citadel from the St. Lawrence River.
This is one of my favorite views in the Petit Champlain area of the city.  This was a quick sketch done while at the Rendez-vous naval, after having done a couple of sketches of the boats, sailors, etc.  There was a US Navy jazz band playing on the dock, right behind where I was seated.  It was a brilliant way to spend the afternoon.

I was loving the gulls, and trying hard to capture them as they cartwheeled and shrieked at each other in flight.  And, I wanted to record the vertigo-inducing repetition of roofs, windows, and spires which is standard fare in the city.  The sketch shows the elements that captured my attention, and highlights the fact that I need to keep practicing drawing roofs.  I'm not in love with the results, but c'est la vie.  

This sketch was made under a blisteringly hot sun about a week ago, while out on les plaines d'Abraham.  Today, this area is a big park near Vieux-Québec.  But, the Plains have quite the story to tell.  This is where the fateful battle between the French and British took place, a history which is quite evident.  There are still old canons scattered throughout the park, monuments to the watershed event which turned Canada towards British dominion.  Another monument, to a less epic contest, the defense tower in this sketch was built on the Plains after the British gained control.  In fact, the tower, others like it, and the Citadel were all built in anticipation of an American invasion.  During the War of 1812, the Americans did indeed invade Canada in several locations.  However, they never made it as far as Quebec City, so these defenses remain untested to this day.  Incidentally, the War of 1812 is a big deal here in Canada.  This summer, the country is actually spending a serious chunk of change commemorating the 200th anniversary of a conflict most Americans have no idea ever took place.  

This sketch juxtaposes the visible thread of history against the modern concerns of energy production (the Lévis refinery on the left, and the high voltage power lines, center) as well as the concept of living downstream (the river running out of the left-center of the sketch).  There was actually a huge container ship docked at Lévis, but it didn't fit on the page.  Like so many places in Quebec City, the old and modern aspects of life layer on top of each other, some smoothly, others banging misfit edges.


Ang said...

These are great Bet! Nice to see you drawing again! :)

fruit.root.leaf. said...

Thanks Angie! :)  It feels great.

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