For the last few weeks I've been feeling like a bit of a change and just by chance a fantastic opportunity came up to go on a walk with a watercolour artist to Lake Geneva. He was giving a talk to 'share his inspired manner of observing and seeing the nuance and truth of the subjects he paints' and it would finish at the lake where he would do a demonstration. Well, it sounded wonderful and it was! His enthusiam was so infectious I got my paints out as soon as I got home and did this little sketch of him sitting at the lakeside. I was wondering whether to post it when Alex looked at it and said 'wow, did you do that?' so here it is. What happens when I put paint to paper is not the effect I'm going for (I'm not even sure what that is) but after his talk about there being no rules, and how the art is not about copying what you see but putting yourself, your personality, into the work, I don't really care if it's considered bad or not. It was just what I needed to hear. His tiny sketchbooks made a big impression on me too as I love working small but popular opinion is artists should work big. Well, I'm not listening to that anymore! I realised that I was making things difficult for myself by using sketchbooks that I was uncomfortable with (particularly drawing in public) and it's perfectly alright to do tiny sketches too. I really like the paper in the watercolour Moleskines so I'm using the small ones to practice in.
It was a cold but glorious afternoon walking through Parc La Grange to the south side of the lake at Quai Gustave Ador, and I enjoyed it so much I'm doing it again next week!
By the way, if anyone is interested in travel sketches, I came across some wonderful links on Stefano Faravelli's website. There are links to videos here, sketchbooks to flick through on screen and even a list of things in his travel palette. I found more videos as I looked for the links so there is plenty to browse and his work is so inspiring it hardly matters that it's all in Italian!