Friday, December 31, 2010

Last post of 2010

Apologies for the long absence.  Don't have a good reason, but I can make one up if requested.

I have a few ideas that I'd like to try out in the next few weeks.  I recently did a trial run of an idea in my small Strathmore pad-- a square-ish panorama that I think might be really cool on a large scale.  There are a few iterations I'm working on in this direction, and I've also essentially finished my folding pano as well, but none of those images have been scanned yet.  Wait 'til next year folks.  Meanwhile, I have this:

riverwalk pano

See y'all next year.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A few more from the Strathmore sketch pad

I filled my old 8" x 10" Strathmore drawing pad, so I got another one.  I like the scale because it fits perfectly in my small mapcase bag.  

First, the Commerce Building from my last Strathmore.  No idea why I didn't post this already, seeing as how I posted it on Urban Sketchers 3 weeks ago.
commerce building, san antonio, texas

This is a detail of the facade of the south side of the AT&T Building.  The east side has by far the most detail, but little in the way of shade to sketch from.  It's also a little bit intimidating.  The south side seemed more manageable. 
at&t building facade

Linda and I drove out to Fredericksburg for a day last week and I got this sketch done of the weird but cool 
Admiral Nimitz Museum on main street.  
nimitz museum
There are a whole bunch of other cool buildings there I'd like to sketch at some point, but its difficult because the streets have diagonal pull-in parking, so there are no big gaps between cars to sketch the other side of the street.  Many of the benches there also have this new "face away from the street" urban-planning disease that I've noticed in many urban districts lately.  I suppose since they have no mass transit, there's no need for benches to face out away from the businesses.  Oh, well.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

More of the panorama

Stage three (Commerce Street) of the pano project is progressing much more more slowly than the first two, partly because my "shady" spot is really a blustery wind-tunnel of a site that makes for unpleasant sketching.  That and it's the most pedestrian-heavy area I've yet drawn, which means a lot of questions and curiosity from passers by, which, while well-meaning, make it hard to focus.  I have finished the Navarro Street pano, though, so here it is:

completed Navarro Street panorama

navarro street panorama

navarro street panorama

navarro street panorama

navarro street panorama and the start of the commerce st pano

Monday, November 8, 2010

Sketching in progress

I've been asked a few times to post photos showing my sketching process, but it's always been hard to do because I'm usually alone.  This past weekend Linda came downtown with me and took some pictures.  Now you can finally see me spilling out of my tiny chair!

Sketching on Broadway:
sketching on Broadway

sketching on Broadway

sketching on Broadway

sketching on Broadway

the finished sketch:
world trade center building on broadway

Sketching on the Riverwalk:
sketching on the San Antonio Riverwalk
and the sketch:
riverwalk bridge

Monday, November 1, 2010

Brand new Moleskine

Since I've been doing the longer-term sketches in a Strathmore pad, I'm trying to do much looser, quicker sketches in my moleskine now, less than an hour.  Knowing me this could all come to an end at any time, but for now I'm having fun.

a 15 minute sketch of the Koehler House on the campus of San Antonio College:
koehler house

This view is from the window of the Subway restaurant on Broadway.  Special appearance by my truck, on the right:
the broadway tower from subway

This one was getting close to the hour limit, but still within the timeframe.  The Gunter Hotel (which deserves it's own larger, more detailed study):
gunter hotel, 45 minute sketch

San Antonio Museum of Art sketches

Just a few from a recent Tuesday evening.  It was too dark to draw outside, but the museum is open late on Tuesdays.  Lots of people there in the evening, including a sketching group.  Need to do this more often.

athena statue

moose and water nymph


Triple Self-Portrait in the big moleskine

Done late one evening after too much internet time.  These perspectives always make the living room seem much larger than it really is.
triple self portrait in living room

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Panorama Project

I finally started working in my limited edition USk folding Moleskine.  It took me a while to think of how I wanted to use it, but I decided I would do a series of street panoramas here in San Antonio, Texas.  The first of these, on Houston Street north of Alamo Plaza, is (almost) done, but I should have room for two more in the sketchbook.  I did part of it during the sketchcrawl, but I wasn't able to round up any other local crawlers this time around. The next street will be Navarro Street in front of the Nix Hospital, which I've already begun.

houston street pano spread 01
The Federal Courthouse and Post Office

houston street pano spread 02
More Courthouse

houston street pano spread 03
The Express-News building is in the background left, Emily Morgan Hotel foreground right

houston street pano spread 04
The Emily Morgan Hotel

houston street pano spread 05
Starting the Navarro Street pano

houston street panorama (still in progress) and a preview of navarro street
The whole shebang

Monday, October 11, 2010

Settling on a theme

I'm still trying to figure out a large-scale project I'd like to do here in San Antonio-- something like my Bozeman Main Street series where the drawings work together as a group.  Lately Houston Street has just been popping up in my Strathmore pad.  I suppose it's because it's easy to sketch there: lots of buildings, lots of shade, easy to get to.  I might still want to do something else with the street; not sure yet.

Texas Theater facade
texas theater, san antonio

Hotel Valencia and Sip Coffee Bar
hotel valencia and sip coffee bar

South Texas Building
south texas building

Friday, October 8, 2010

RIP Moleskine 7-20-10 to 10-7-10

Well, another three months, another moleskine down.  There were ups, there were downs, there were laughs and tears, and now we begin all over again.

santa rosa hospitalThis sketch was done from the car.  Santa Rosa hospital is a large hospital complex downtown.  Some of the buildings are old and some are new.  Judging by the odd angle that it connects with the larger building, I think the tower is an older structure and the building behind it more modern.  But who knows?*

mission san jose from the southThis sketch of Mission San Jose only took about twenty minutes, but I think it came out pretty good.  The light was just right and I wanted to close out the book with a simple, economical sketch.

*Many people do, obviously.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

san antonio from the tower of the americas parts 2 and 3

I did another few sketches from the TOA the other day, one in a Moleskine, the other in my Strathmore pad, and realized that both were at almost the same scale as my first drawing from the tower back in February, and there was minimal overlap.  I plugged them into Photoshop and merged them into a little panorama of the city skyline.  There are still a few skyscrapers to the east I couldn't fit, including San Antonio's two tallest hotel, so perhaps another visit is in order.

san antonio from the tower of the americas 02

view of western part of downtown from tower of the americas

san antonio from the tower of the americas

Here's the final panorama (click for a larger view):

More Strathmore sketches

The Emily Morgan Hotel, done sitting on the brick wall of the flowerbed in Alamo Plaza on a beautiful day.

medical arts building/emily morgan hotel

Bexar County Courthouse-- unfortunately there are few views available (except for in the middle of the street) that afford one an opportunity to really draw the whole building.  The towers here were the only thing visible above a massive live oak that obscure the rest of the facade.  
bexar county courthouse towers

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sketching up in Austin

I went to pick up Linda last week in Austin, and got some sketching in along South Congress. Linda also bought me a raspa.

monroe near s. congress, austin, tx

sketching in austin

sketching in austin

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Express-News Building

The Express-News is San Antonio's only major newspaper. This is their headquarters, and an attractive building to boot. Linda and I have a good friend who writes for the paper, Vianna. Maybe I can convince her to buy this sketch.

express news building

Two moleskine sketches

Linda and I went to our friend Heather's birthday get-together the other night and a sketch resulted:

heather's house

This one is from a coffee shop in downtown SA on Houston Street, looking toward the Gunter Hotel (where the famous blues performer Robert Johnson recorded all of his songs):
houston at n st mary's