Thursday, March 31, 2011

Sketchabout #3

Some sketches from Sketchabout last Saturday. A little wet but nevertheless, always fun to meet up with other sketchers and getting inspired with so many people's work.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Government House, Sydney

Sketching on a blustery showery day outside Government House, Sydney - still inside the Royal Botanic Gardens. See the tall grasses blowing in the breeze and the yachts on the harbour leaning over.
A beautifully cultivated garden with an amazing variation of colour in the foliage.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Government House Sketchabout

Hmm, this weekend seemed to have a political theme to it – State Elections on, sketching at Government House... Anyway, I had an hour to kill before we met for Sketchabout, plus I was damn hungry. I found the Palace Cafe and saw the wonderful gates. I think the only other time I had seen them was in one of Liz's sketches. So while I was waiting for my piping hot coffee to cool down, I decided to paint them.

After last weekend's Sketchabout I had looked at my RBG map and noticed that you could enter the Gov House grounds, thinking I'll have to check that out one day. How funny that we ended up there. I really just wanted to concentrate on the palm tree in the foreground, but my sketch just rambled on.
After sketchabout was officially over for the day, I wanted to do at least one more sketch before the weather got worse. I headed towards the Rose Garden Pavillion, but alas, yet another wedding was taking place there. Then I found this gnarly Holly Oak down from the Pioneer Garden and thought it the perfect subject matter. When I sat down I noticed the Pin Oak, and felt there was this relationship between them.

Sketchabout 3 - Liz's Sketches

Sketchabout 3 - another wonderful afternoon despite the rain and windy conditions.
110326 Sketchabout3
over 20 sketchers... a few of them are missing in this group photo.
110326 Sketchabout 3_2 Restaurant
I knew we were planning to go to Government House so I decided to sketch another
a building as warmup while waiting for 1pm to arrive- this is the old part of the restaurant.
110326 Sketchabout 3_3 Government House
Hard to believe that I have never been to Government House before and now that I know that you can freely wander around the gorgeous grounds I am sure that I will go back. Being an architect I was rather excited at the prospect of sketching an overall John and I set up under a tree to sketch the grand vista that you enjoy on the approach to the building
110326 Sketchabout 3_4 GovHOuse in the rain!
I then went back to the gardens for another view but shortly after starting the rain started... I was really in the groove so didn't want to stop. Up came the umbrella and I kept going.
110326 Sketching in the rain1
This was so much fun and I loved the out of control nature of having rain on my page as despite the umbrella the wind driven rain just kept landing on the page! Thanks to Rod for these photos.

See you all next week...please do come along even if rain is forecast! It is a pity to miss out on all the fun just because of a few drops of water!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Garden Sketchabout#3

On a patchy rainy day, we went to the Government House. But I already sketched it last week. So, I sketched my new friends. See how we work hard...and chat more?!! (*Tiny dots on her shirt are rain drops, not salt.) Sadami: "Don't say, 'It's the end of our friendship!!' "
Friend just had a big laugh and we really had a great fun. Hahaha!!
Friend: "Oh, that's nice. I like it." She'd like to use it for online.Sadami: "From next time, I have to charge ye (hopefully "millions"?!)." I will sketch other members as many as possibleʚ(ˆ◡ˆ)ɞ.
Another statue is a Scottish poet, Robert Burns.
I'd really appreciate Jennifer's great kindess, who took photos all of us.

We really look forward to next Saturday! What a friendly club!
Come and join us!
In addition, more graffiti are in my blog, "Sadami's Graffiti."

Cunningham Courtyard, Botanic Gardens, Sketching Class

The Sabal palm was the geometric show-off in the Cunningham Courtyard. But then there was also that woman in white, let's call her Miss Cunningham, watching the grass tree leaves swoosh around in the wind.  Too tempting not to subvert the plant sign into:

Miss Cunningham

Courting cold,  she stares,
wardrobe missing? Cupboard bare?
A case, again, of nothing to wear. 

from Carol Jenkins

Alissa's Sketchabout 3

There was continual threat of rain today. We were very fortunate to be able to go to the historic Government House to sketch in the gardens and have the verandah to use when it did rain. A wonderful building to sketch. I decided just to choose a small part of it instead of attempting the whole building in all its gl0ry When it was fine, I went searching for a leaf to draw, but got distracted by the view of the Opera House..... but found some feathers to take back to the shelter of the building to draw when it did start to rain. these are all in watercolour pencil & some ink

Saturday, March 26, 2011


The different colours of the bamboo are amazing, not as difficult to sketch as some of the other plants. It was a very hot day but a nice breeze was coming from the harbour, didn't want togo a wandering as I usually do. 

A view of Gov House.

Sketching from Mrs Macquarie's chair, so many people there was hard to finish the sketch as they were blocking my view, oh well this happens so I added some colour, leaves from another part of the gardens. A great place to sketch, so many interesting places to draw.

What's this

The cockatoos are very friendly and very curious. This particular fellow just sat and posed, just draw me please. This was a day of walking and looking rather than doing much sketching.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sketchabout #1.... a little late.

I'm way late with sketches from the Sketchabout #1. Here they are and looking forward to Sketchabout #3 this Saturday!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sketchabout 2 Fred Marsh – The birth of splat-ism

After Wendy Shortland's workshop,the first sketch of the day was in the courtyard behind the the Maiden Theatre

Watercolour, pencil, pen.

After lunch I went down into the gardens to get a panoramic view. For many years I worked in Macquarie Street & appreciated how the gardens are such an essential part of our city, by providing an easy access haven for workers to escape at lunch time and rest, read, think, contemplate or just refresh their minds in preparation for the remaining rigors of the day. So I thought that I would find a spot to show the relationship between the garden and the edge of the city at Macquarie Street. I parked my stool under a tree out of the rain and started to sketch, but the raindrops kept finding their way through.

If Turner can strap himself to a mast in a storm to capture a storm on canvas, a few raindrops are a bit of a doddle & were not going to stop me. Nor did they, but many did splat on the drawing and I think that they were a big help in capturing the wetness and grayness of the day – not a normal sight in the Emerald City. I am sure that this day will be looked upon as the founding of the art movement known as splat-ism

Watercolour, restorative gouache, pen, pencil and splats.

Fred Marsh

This week the beautiful and inspiring Botanical Gardens- Barbara Gray

Last week Mount Annan, this week the beautiful and inspiring Botanical Gardens! Thank you to those involved in organising this event. It's great! Wonderful to sketch, meet and share with others. I have used gouache and pen [ just a little ] on arches watercolour paper.
Garden Statue
Bamboo Sketch
Rathbourne Lodge

A cactus and a ginger flower

My daughter and I came to the first sketchabout, couldn't make the second but will be back on Saturday. The first one was just feeling our way, so only did a few drawings. Couldn't resist the vibrant ginger flower, then we spent the rest of the time with the succulents - spoilt for choice!

The Lotus Pond by Kumar Pereira

Will this sketch of the Lotus Pond by Kumar Pereira be the winner of the 2011 $1000 Derivan Sketchabout Prize or the $500 People’s Choice Prize? For the Great Garden Sketchabout Competition entry form and conditions, go to

Sketches must be submitted to our Garden Shop by 5 pm, Monday 18 April, 2011. Best of luck to all entries!

Sketch by Erin Hill

Even with the harbour views, Erin Hill is fascinated by the ibis. For more information about her Sketchabout experience, visit

Adam and Michaela's sketches

Interstate visitors Adam and Michaela joined us under the shelter of the Rathborne Lodge verandah on Saturday. They both freely admit to not having picked up a pencil since school and started their sketching afternoon with varying degrees of intrepidation.

However by the end of the session they were chatting with the other sketchers and had produced some wonderful drawings

Michaela drew the (lower half ) of the statue of Autumn with an ink pen

and Adam used a 2B to sketch Angels Trumpet (amongst other things)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Second Sketchabout

Although it rained constantly during the two hours we sketched, this wet, intrusive weather did give us another perspective of the gardens at least. One of my drawings in particular was a collaboration with myself using ink and mother nature providing the raindrops. It turned out to be my favourite.

Nicola's Sketches

These sketches are done using Chinese Ink with an emphasis on capturing the character of the Botanics rather than a literal representation. I wanted to give a sense of the raining weather and the fact that I was position away from the elements under a large tree. From this location it was relatively dry with only the occasional rain drop falling onto my work. The Botanics is a curious culturally specific beauty in being a very control environment where lawns are neatly moved and vegetation highly selected. I find the use of signs naming vegetation in the garden interesting this is why I have made it the focus in one sketch. The signs legitimize the plant like a passport to the space. I imagine those without signs are swiftly removed.

Nicola Moir

Alissa's sketches from Sketchabout Week Two

Sketched in the dampness

In the Courtyard Garden , under the verandah at Rathborne Lodge . There were moments of congenial silence and bursts of conversation as 23 of us sketched together

This final drawing of an Angels Trumpet was done at the end of the day - damp watercolour pencils on damp paper - all a bit soggy !

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sketching Class - The Bot Gardens for Beginners

It's week two for me in my first ever art class, bookmaking and sketching with Wendy Shortland, which I am enjoying very much.  To describe something my first instinct is to start writing, though whether it's words or ink, looking takes the cake. Here I may have bitten off to much,with this scene from the courtyard of the Moore Room. Still it's the luxury of a cacaphony of plants, that green thought manifest, the sense of riot and abundance, which makes it such a pleasure to attempt to translate the garden to paper. Next week I hope to turn a few  new leaves!  Carol J.

Sadami's Sketchabout#2

Hi, Friends, thank you for wonderful cheers for my adventure, "SketchAbout." I'll show you the Garden has precious historical, cultural and natural heritages of Australia for the future.

Government House

Despite rain, we enjoyed sketching. I also made some sketches Friday before rain (lucky!). But eventually, I finished them up in rain. A bit tough work was Government House.

OK, you and me, let's have a walk together in this huge Garden.
Have a look of the map. Enlarge it, please. Get it? How big it is!
Opening: 7am to 6:30pm.
A strategy, "How to Conquer the Garden" is essential. Otherwise, waste of time and you cannot go home?! (*no worries, in fact, so many rangers always patrol.) Let's walk around the left side of the map

Head to Government House and the end of the path to see Sydney Opera House.
From the Herb Garden to the Government House, there are beautiful greeny open fields full of biiiiiiig trees. How big? Good question! Trees are "monstrous" big and gigantic. Can you see a person under a tree? How small it is!

Sculptures are here and there along path ways or on lawns--some are extraordinarily big and contemporary art. The below depicts "waves," according to Toni from the Garden Trust. Ooohhh! Waves!!
The left side, a white one is another huge sculpture of natural rocks and an inside is hollow where bats's sweet home. *Please respect a bat. Toni says, "One bad eats thousands of mesquites,"!! Salute bats!
Sculpture "Waves"

Still, we keep walking ahead. Now, left hand side, see "Government House" (*please see the first image and the map.) Although a bit miserable to sketch it under a tiny umbrella in rain, it has paid off. Wow, how gorgeous and elegant!! One more surprise is a freebie to see an inside. So, next time, I'll definitely try it and report you.

Finally, we get to the end of the path. Yey, "Opera House"! This egg-shells-like building is our cultural icon! Many people take a rest here and sit on lawn sunny days.

Sydney Opera House

From now on, I'll boast, "Hahahaha! Sydneysiders, we're living in the GORGEOUS castle and the Opera House is in my backyard!"

Yes, our legends are in the Garden!

Did you enjoy a walk with me? More photos are in my blog, "Sadami's Graffiti."
Next time, I'll try the middle section or the right section.
So, come and join us, the event, "Sketchabout"