I haven’t sailed all summer but now I am and it’s wonderful. The holiday season is over so the archipelago is quite empty of boats. No motor boats just a few sailing boats and most of them seem to be visiting from Europe. So it’s very peaceful. We have bought a new boat, not new exactly – it was built in 1975. So we are getting to know how everything works. Next week my wife returns to work but I intend to continue sailing as much of September I can. I want to sketch, paint and take reference photos. It’s going to be an experience.
This watercolour sketch was painted at our first stop on the trip, Gällnö is the name of the island, we stayed for a day then moved on.
Another quick sketch while on my way home from work. I wish I had designed the clouds a bit better. It was just one long cloud in reality but it would have been better if I had broken it up. I am satisfied otherwise, actually I quite like it!
I painted this very quickly on the way home from work yesterday. It makes me happy to achieve finishing one watercolour a day, it doesn’t matter if it’s a masterpiece or not. The most important thing is to practice, practice, practice. ( I think I am talking to myself here.)
I met up with my fellow Urban Sketchers yesterday, we meet on the last Sunday of every month. It was a beautiful warm summer’s day, 25 degrees in the shade – a rare event at this time of the year here in Stockholm. We met outside Sven Harry’s Art Museum in Vasaparken, close to St Eriksplan in Stockholm. I first did a watercolour sketch of the people sunbathing in the park, this was on Arches rough and later I painted Sven Harry’s Art Museum. If you are in Stockholm I can totally recommend to visit the museum right now as they have a great Anders Zorn exhibition on.
I am happy with my sketches, I was able to simplify the compositions to make them interesting to the eye. This is such a hard skill to master, do not try to draw everything and don’t be afraid to move objects around on the page to improve the composition. I have not mastered this skill yet, one has to practice it over and over again until it becomes instinctive. Each sketch took about an hour to paint. Sunbathers was painted on Arches rough and the museum was painted on Saunders fine.
I took it really easy today, I’ve been so busy during the last month – I really needed to take my foot off the gas pedal. So, the first thing I did today was go to the central station and sketched the travelers as they waited for trains.
In the afternoon I walked around the town and looked for scenes to photo and paint at a later date. I walked for 4 hours! It was a sunny day and I was hunting the light, looking for scenes that were perfect for watercolours. I found quite a few so I’m happy. Tomorrow I’ll paint in the studio at home, my feet are feeling tired. I have life drawing tonight so I’ll sleep well.
There is a beautiful shaded street in the center of Palma de Mallorca. I saw two street buskers playing really soft and harmonically. I started drawing them, the light was wonderful. Unfortunately they moved on after a few minutes and I was left trying to remember the lighting on their clothes etc.
The second watercolour was a quick one. I decided that I really need to loosen up. Not be so fixed on details. Why is it so hard to do this? I was happy with the result, I wish I could be so relaxed all the time.
I’ve been walking around the streets of Palma de Mallorca. I’m starting to find my way around the old narrow streets in the shopping districts. This court yard I found down a quiet side street away from all the tourists. It was a pleasure to paint, it was so tranquil.
I jumped on a last minute flight to Palma de Mallorca yesterday. I tried to paint the bright pink and mostly drunk lobsters on the beach. It didn’t inspire me. Maybe it will tomorrow, trying hard to adjust to the heat (29). Actually, tomorrow I’ll head into Palma, I’m staying in a charter-hotel in Arenal. It’s fun, I feel very lucky to be able to do this kinda thing.