My wife is a gardener and she loves to visit garden centers. She was doing just that a couple weeks ago and they were having a big sale. She came home with a car full of plants and a plaster garden cow that, to me, looks like a sheep with horns. I think it’s the stone fur that does it. In any case, it’s cute as can be so I drew it.
Quebec City has several artificial underground reservoirs and one of is under a part of the Plains of Abraham, a huge park that overlooks the St. Lawrence River. Originally owned by a farmer named Abraham, it’s now officially called Battlefield Park because of the famous 1759 battle when the British defeated the French. Everyone who lives here still calls it the Plains of Abraham and the other name is relegated to the tourist brochures. Recently the entire reservoir was uncovered to replace the top surface. This is a sketch of that area of the park.
The building holds the support equipment for the reservoir and each of those little strips of foliage hides an air vent. The grass is beginning to grow back but it’s still pretty sparse and a bright yellow green. I thought it made an interesting scene. Besides, I could sit in the shade as I drew.
I almost titled this blog post “Oops… I forgot.” When I wrote my last post I got pulled away from the writing for a while. When I returned I read the last paragraph and it seemed like an ending so I did a quick copy edit and posted it.
Later I realized that the ending was really just a stopping point and that I’d forgotten to add a second sketch I’d done at the old zoo park that day.
So, as I was saying in my last post, we were having fun at the park and I decided to do a sketch of the bridge that carries foot traffic over the small river running through the park.
This required that I get down to the river level which put me in shade, among a bunch of foliage and near water. What could go wrong? Mosquitoes, mosquitoes, and more mosquitoes. What made them worse was that I was drawing. I’m oblivious to my surroundings when I’m sketching, even the swarm of mosquitoes that were biting me.
I didn’t notice until the next day when my arms and legs started itching like crazy (shorts and t-shirt day). I’m sure the sketch suffers from blood loss effects but here it is. I didn’t really finish the paint stage but I hope you like it anyway; the mosquitos sure liked me.
At one time, Quebec City had a marvelous zoo. I got to see it when I did my post-doc here. By the time I returned to live here, however, politics had caused its demise. These days a portion of the zoo grounds is now a park called Parc des Moulins because there is a windmill on the grounds, but I miss the animals.
Anyways, the Artistes dans les Parcs went there and had a lovely day. The weather couldn’t have been better and so hanging out with a bunch of artists, in a heavily forested area, with a creek running by was really relaxing.
For a while I was off by myself because I’d decided to draw the rear of one of the old buildings and the garden area behind (in front of the behind?) of it. This too is a relaxing place as there is a small pond and creek as part of the garden. Here’s the drawing I did in the morning.
Then it was time for lunch and we sat around enjoying each other’s company. Wish I’d think about taking photos of these gatherings. I never think about it until I write the blog posts (grin).
“April showers bring May flowers.” – Thomas Tusser (1557)
I have a question. If you get showers in April, and they continue through May, will there be LOTS of flowers in June? I sure hope so because Quebecers’ moods, will need a boost.
By date and temperature, we have finally gotten to spring and we sketchers are chomping at the bit to get out sketching. In fact I witnessed a bunch of them, including myself, wandering around in the rain, looking for stuff to draw. It was quite a sight.
We were attending the first of a series of plein air painting gatherings organized by the great Denise Bujold – great because she’s done this and because she’s so darn good at it. There are 16 events scheduled, one a week, throughout the summer and fall. But for this first one, surprise, surprise, it rained.
It was held at an apple/vegetable farm on Ile d’Orleans, a large island near Quebec City. When Yvan and I arrived we found a gaggle of sketchers huddled in a large space that houses an art gallery during summer tourist season. Eventually this group spilled out into the garden adjacent to the building and we literally wandered in the rain, pointing at things we could sketch if the rain would stop.
Eventually we made our way to a place where there was an overhang and a few picnic benches and everyone set up shop to sketch. Across a field there was this scene and I confess that I didn’t have my heart in it and it shows. But I did get to sketch, outdoors, and with other people. That has to count for something. There was supposed to be another event today but it’s pouring rain so it was cancelled. I’m in desperate need of some flowers.