This is the first page of my newest sketchbook, and to start it off, I decided to try something different; instead of quickly sketching a whole building in the span of 20 or 30 minutes during my lunchtime strolls, I would instead slowly sketch a building over the span of days. For this building, I found a good spot to stand in, and sketched for ten or 20 minutes at a time, and for one day, a good 45-minute stretch after work. Thankfully, buildings here in Washington, DC are very modular, so it’s easy to work whole sections at a time, and still know where to stop and pick up the next day.
Sketching on the Metro is a pure gamble; sometimes you have an individual whom serves as the perfect model, and other times the best you can do is sketch random elements of random people, as was the case here, along with my little wish that people would leave me alone to sketch in quiet discreet obscurity, and not loudly say things like “hey, you’re really talented, that’s a great drawing of that guy, it looks exactly like him!!!”
When I sketch people on the Metro, I never know if I’ll have enough time (or luck) to capture the whole individual, or at least, just their heads. Sometimes, I end up somewhere in the middle, as was the case here. It also was the case where I simply didn’t have the right color marker for this gentleman’s rather nice light green shirt, so the best I could do was merely indicate the color and ascribe it to memory.
Here’s a bike I sketched during a lunchtime stroll. This older department store single speed townie is a far cry from some of the higher-end bikes found locked-up on the sidewalks of Washington, DC, but if you love bicycles, then there is something to appreciate in the simple green form if this particular ride.
Here are two individuals I sketched on the Metro one morning. The bottom individual was easier to sketch; from an angle, I’m less likely to be noticed by the person I’m sketching, and I can sketch more continuously. When the person is in front of me, however, it’s much riskier. Hopefully, they’re too engrossed in their smart phones and tablets to notice, though I still need to predict when they’ll look up, at which time I put down the sketchbook and pen. Generally, I’m sketching them in bits and pieces, switching between working in a focused and controlled manner, and a manner which is rushed and spontaneous.
Drawn in 2001; I was pretty sick with a fever, and my nose was running like a faucet, hence the drawing. I was sleeping rather fitfully, and decided the add in a snuggled and peacefully sleeping dog to show a contrast to just how bad I was sleeping. I rendered this in ballpoint pen, for no particular reason, though everybody should draw with ballpoint pens every now and then.