Monday, April 21, 2014

A personal worldwide sketchcrawl (Part 1)

I have a job that involves managing a global team - in the US, Europe and the Asia Pacific region. As a consequence I travel a lot, typically 3 months of the year. And while the travel no longer excites me (quite the opposite!), the opportunity to meet and work with my colleagues around the planet always does. On my most recent trip, thanks to Liz, I added to this the excitement of meeting and sketching with Urban Sketchers around the planet.

This was a month long business trip in late March and early April - long even by my standards, with lots of time in airports and on aeroplanes. The view below was en route from Sydney to Washington DC, and is as typical as any other I see on these trips. :-)

My major stops this time were Washington DC, San Diego, LA, Paris, Freudenstadt, and Munich. Although my work did get a little in the way of sketching, I had free weekends with time to sketch in Washington DC, San Diego and Paris...

I landed in DC on a Saturday night. This was the only location that Liz didn't have any contacts for me with, so I set out to sketch on my own on the Sunday morning. They have this wonderfully enormous of post office in Washington, which I find strangely appealing. As I sketched the temperature plummeted and I managed to complete this just before the snow started (I had been wondering why my hands were shaking):

In San Diego, however, the sketching was far from a solo activity. I was hosted wonderfully by Lydia Velarde and the group from the San Diego Urban Sketchers. We had a lovely weekend sketching, first of all in the quirky City Farmers Nursery near the centre of town. Here is my sketch of an abandoned horse float surrounded by pot plants:

And here is the video that Lydia produced, showing all the sketchers and their work:

We then spent the Sunday in Balboa Park, which is a wonderful cultural centre with museums, botanical gardens and the zoo (oh, and an outdoor organ!). We sat by the statue of El Cid and chatted as we sketched. 

Once again, Lydia made a video of the occasion:

And that was the end of my US sketching.

...except for this view en route to Paris (where I met up with more USkers - which I will cover in my next blog).