Old Expo Exhibition Hall

I go to our new Grande Marché almost every day.  Part of the reason is that I’m trying hard to walk as much as possible to rebuild strength in my bad leg.  But the other reason is that there’s just something soothing about seeing all the local farmer produce on display.  I can’t really explain why that is so and the hectic nature of lots of people running around buying stuff would argue against it, but it makes me happy for some reason.

The other day I drew the corner of a really large, classic building that used to be the Science & Technology building on the fairgrounds on which the Grande Marché sits (it used to be the Agriculture building).  Anyways, I just love the corners of this building.  This was a quick and small sketch.  Some day I’ll have to do a larger one.

Even So, The Sketchcrawl Was A Success

Steps at Bois de Coulonge

Steps in the garden at Bois du Coulonge; Stillman & Birn Beta (6×9), Namiki Falcon, DeAtramentis Document Black

Sometimes luck is on your side; sometimes it’s not.  I’m still not sure which of these occurred yesterday, when we held our second Croquistes de Quebec sketchcrawl.  The day before the event the weather reports were suggesting 20-30mm of rain for the day – not exactly what you want to hear as an organizer of an outdoor event.  But when Sunday morning arrived, the report had been downgraded to 1mm of rain.  It was windy and it had cooled significantly from the nice temps we’d had all week.  Things, shall we say, were not looking good.

But, intrepid sketchers that we are, Yvan and I arrived at Parc Parc du Bois de Coulonge bright and early with smiles on our faces, though our collars were turned up and hats pulled down tight onto our heads.  We started sketching, hoping beyond hope that someone else would show up.  I’d be lying if I didn’t acknowledge that we were doubtful.


Agathe drawing a Hosta plant.

But alas, there are other crazy  dedicated sketchers in Quebec City and soon, Agathe showed up.  She’s a passionate sketcher that did a great sketch of me sketching.  I wish I had it to share with you.  Later she became interested in drawing some of the plants in the park.


Guylaine, trying to keep warm

A bit later Guylaine arrived and began drawing a building that’s right out of one of Disney’s animation movies, with more gables and turrets resting on its small footprint than any building deserves.  I think she was the really smart one among us as the building houses a coffee shop and she got to sit at a table while she drew.


Yvan, my mentor, doing what he’s always doing – drawing

It was cold, however, and very windy.  Rain seemed just around the corner, though it didn’t actually rain until Yvan and I were heading home late in the afternoon.  The two women had had enough by lunch time and left but since we had established both a morning and an afternoon meeting time, for those who couldn’t make it in the morning, Yvan and I felt compelled to stay.  We headed to the afternoon meeting place, and while our spirits were cold, they had yet to be dampened, at least not literally.

Yvan decided he was going to draw the grand building at the head of the large garden/fountain/open area that is the heart of the park.  Being of more modest abilities and energy, I decided to draw what is now the information center.  It used to be the hub building for three greenhouses that splayed out in three directions but had been removed.  I found the building fascinating, particularly from my perch on a hill above it.  I still need to draw some of the garden behind it.


Stillman & Birn Beta (6×9), Namiki Falcon, DeAtramentis Document Black

One thing Yvan did during the day was accumulate drawings of the lamps and fixtures within the park.  I thought I’d share it with you to give you some indication of this guy’s talent.  These are his “quick sketches,” each taking him only 2-3 minutes.

Yvan'sLampPageIn the end, the bad weather reports and the cold reality diminished our numbers and was unlucky.  On other hand, four of us had a great time getting together to sketch.  Overall I think we were lucky because we all went home happy and dry.  Besides, it’s supposed to warm up tomorrow and I’ll be out sketching.

Sketching The Musee De La Francophonie

I’m just giddy with excitement that I’m getting some days that are warm enough for me to get out sketching on the street.  It’s a good time too as tourists aren’t yet filling the old city streets so I’m able to sketch some things in that area that are normally difficult because of all the people.

One such place is the Musée de l’Amérique francophonie.  It’s part of a complex of structures that used to be a seminary and Université Laval.  The university moved, long ago,  from the downtown area but its Department of Architecture still resides in one of the buildings.  These buildings have a rich history and I’ve sketched several of them but never the Museum entrance because it faces the town square and is next to a huge cathedral that is a tourist attraction.

But tourists won’t show up until it’s a bit warmer so I sat and sketched this grand structure.  Nothing better than sitting in the sun, coat zipped up, and sketching.  Hmm…no, it’s better without needing the coat zipped up.

Stillman & Birn Gamma (10x7), Sailor Fude pen, De Atramentis Document Black

Stillman & Birn Gamma (10×7), Sailor Profit calligraphy  pen, De Atramentis Document Black


Once Upon A Time We Had A Zoo

There was a time when Quebec City had a zoo.  It was a good zoo.  It was a place where you could go to not only commune with animals but also to walk the large, wooded grounds and have a picnic.  Then a really dumb, and completely unavoidable political decision, was made and we no longer have a zoo.

What do you do with a huge tract of land that had a bunch of moats, fences, and buildings scattered all around it.  What Quebec did was fence off most of it and turn the front section into a small park to serve the population in the northern portion of the city.  It’s a beautiful park, with waterfalls scattered along the small river that runs through it.  It’s also just a short bus trip from my home.

My daughter and I went there.  She took her Kindle.  I took my sketchbook.  We had a grand day, enjoying one of the first days where we could be outside without coats.  I chose this scene.  The small building used to be one of the administration buildings of the museum.

cheap toned paper sketchbook, Pilot Prera, Noodler's Lexington Gray

cheap toned paper sketchbook, Pilot Prera, Noodler’s Lexington Gray

Sketchcrawl Reminder – January 25th

2013-05-20MuseeJust a quick reminder that Saturday, January 25th, at 10AM will begin a grand day of sketching as we celebrate the 42nd Worldwide Sketchcrawl at the Musée de la Civilisation.  It’s free to all but bring sketching materials and a lunch, though the museum will be most happy to sell you food as well.  You can see details here, in my original post about the sketchcrawl.  See you there.