Friday, September 30, 2011

Solar plate etchings - palms

Another Printfest on Sunday and my first opportunity to print the solar plates I made from the drawings of palms in the Gardens last autumn. This plate was made from the drawing on the right of this spread, done in the Tropical Centre. It was such a simple drawing but the solar etching plate turned out really well. The top one was inked up in sanguine Charbonnel ink - wonderful colour. The other was inked up in an aubergine mix that had been created by Seraphina Martin who runs the Printfest. It is interesting to see them come off the etching press and see how the variation in the colours used makes such a difference.

The second plate was from this drawing of palms done in the Gardens near the Herb Garden. The first was inked up in that lovely sanguine ink again, and the second one with Charbonnel Prussian Blue. Charbonnel are beautiful French inks for fine art printmaking. If you want to know about the process of making solar plate etchings from your drawings or photographs I have written up a short explanation on the glossary of my blog here.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

It was a beautiful day in the Gardens on Thursday, though a cool breeze near the water. We started out on the Spring Walk. Look how gorgeous. There were a lot of people looking and I was lucky to get this photo in a minute when they'd all disappeared. After lunch we moved on to draw trees. I have been wanting to do this ever since I saw Julia and Catherine's beautiful tree drawings the day the sketchabout went to Government House. The colours have been chosen for fun, rather than following nature. The top one is a Port Jackson fig, and the lower
one is a Moreton Bay fig.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Sketching the "Spring Walk"

The Spring Walk in the Gardens is looking absolutely idyllic at the moment. Go now!

The panorama seemed quite daunting to draw and I was looking for something more bold. I found this glorious stand of irises and drew them, leaving room for the border of polyanthus that were actually further along the walk.

We had lunch on the lawn by the Main Pond and were soon joined by a number of hopeful ibises. The didn't stay around long as we were all far too hungry and the picking were not good.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Spring Garden Sketchabout - Alissa

We had beautiful spring weather for the first Spring Sketchabout. Under the blue sky and sunshine a group of about 15 sketchers positioned themselves along the colourful Spring Walk to draw or paint the flowers and scenes.

I arrived early and sketched the Statue of SPRING

Then I had a coffee from the Gardens Cafe and sat in the sun on the lawn to sketch my coffee amongst the camelia petals.

Then to the serious business of drawing tulips - I love tulips !!

and then the wisteria.....

Join us next time as we explore another area of the wonderful Garden.......

Saturday, September 3, 2011


Come back Everyone! It's time for the Spring Garden Sketchabout.

When: 10 am to 12.30 pm, Saturday 10 Sept, 8 Oct, 12 Nov
Where: the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney
Meet at the Palm Grove Centre Information Booth (outside the Garden Shop as we did in Autumn)

BYO sketching equipment.

Join the Sydney Sketch Club in association with the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney, amongst the spring flowers, wildlife and picturesque landscaping.

Meet other sketchers, relax, have fun and share your art and experiences. Garden staff and Volunteer Guides will provide advice on the seasonal highlights. All levels of ability and experience are welcome.

Picnic lunch to follow (BYO or pick up from café).

Enquiries 9231 8125 or
For updates and to share experiences and sketches

*In event of wet weather, entry fee of $5.50 for the Tropical Centre

Thursday, September 1, 2011

More solar plate etchings from the Gardens

Last summer I made some solar plates from my drawings from the Botanic Gardens. It was only last Sunday at Seraphina Martin's Printfest that I had the opportunity to print them in glorious colour. This first lotus plate was taken from this drawing.

The solar plates are made by transferring the drawing to architects' drafting film, and exposing a special plate with a polymer coating to the sun.

This narrow plate came from this drawing, again from the lotus pond.

The lion has been on this blog before, but not in such glorious technicolour. Seraphina mixed up some gorgeous colours for us to roll over the plates with, and I bought some new 'Gardens-coloured' inks to inks up with - a leafy green, a lotus red, and a gorgeous deep yellow you see in the lion's mane & legs.

I've printed these plates in a variety of colours and I can't decide which I like best. However this is my favourite of the colours I printed for the 'autumn' plate. She was inked up in my new leafy green.

I made 15 prints on Sunday and that's a record.