Amsterdam Central Library

I’ve been back at the library this weekend. Enjoy reading all the english newspapers and browsing through the pages of the ceramic and design magazines. I took a seat in one of the comfy pod chairs on the second floor. Had originally thought I’d sketch the view towards the Nemo museum but then started looking more closely at the architecture and then the visitors. People were very preoccupied in their reading so it was a great opportunity to draw them.

I experimented with the shapes and composition. Liked how there were fragments of scenes as my view was obscurred by the pillars and exposed levels.

Printmaking in Paris

At the Van Gogh museum, there’s currently an exhibition showcasing over 100 of the gallery’s best prints. Many of them date from the end of the 20th century when Paris was crazy for print!  No longer reproductions of paintings, these prints were seen as original works of art in themselves. Some big names and big, colourful posters. Including eye catching Toulouse Lautrec posters and illustrated theatre programs.

Loved the vibrancy of Henri Gabriel Ibels designs. Both Pierre Bonnards lithographs inspired by Parisien street scenes and Bonnards french interiors retain the spontaneity of original drawings. The woodcuts by Felix Vallotton for the Paris Worlds Fair in 1901 and his book of 30 scenes on public disturbances are fantastic. Just wish I could have picked up the book and flicked through the pages.

Get your skates on!

I’m in Holland and it’s absolutely freezing! No chance of taking my gloves off to sketch outside in this weather. Over the weekend I’ve enjoyed sketching ice skaters from the comfort of a warm flat. It’s amazing the number of people who have turned out to skate on the frozen canals and rivers. It’s really lovely seeing so many children wrapped up warm and enjoying themselves. Fun to draw friends playing ice hockey and children being towed on sledges. A really good atmosphere!  It reminds me of the wonderful winter scenes by Bruegel.