Drawings of everyday life

Posts tagged “urban sketching

Do you sell your drawings?

Waiting for the ferry, Amsterdam North
Waiting for the ferry
Ferry, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
On the ferry

Somebody on Facebook asked me whether I sell my drawings. I haven’t had that question before, and the question resulted in two things. I printed the digital drawings I made on my iPad with the Paper53 app at a photoshop close to my home. I made prints and I was surprised at the high quality result.

I also opened an ‘online’ shop at Society6. Society6 makes my drawings available for sale. They print it, package it, and ship it. So if you want to buy a print of my digital drawings you can go to my Society6 shop. Through this link you will get free shipping till April 14th 2013.


Do you mind me watching you while you draw?

Ferry, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Passenger on the ferry: “Do you mind me watching you while you draw?”
Me: “No, I don’t. I don’t have time to talk to you though, it’s only a short time till the boat arrives at the other side.”

Passenger (seeing the ‘rewind / undo’ function on my iPad in the paper53 app): “Ssss, that’s incredible.”

Passenger: “You should draw the hair…yes, that’s better now.”

Passenger: “wow, you are really talented.”

I reached the 100!

M. number 100
M. in Café Belga, number 99 of 100
We went to Belgium last weekend and I did draw M. for the 97th, 98th, 99th and 100th time. It took me 18 months to draw him 100 times. Now I can set my new challenge: 200? 500? 1000?

Since I didn’t scan all the drawings I made of M. and since I started uploading the first 36 scans of these drawings to a free Flickr account, and the last drawings to my older Flickr Pro account, M’s drawings aren’t all in one Flickr set. That would be interesting though, because of the slide show feature of Flickr.

Blogging without obligation

Playground and portrait in my journal
I have the ‘blogging without obligation’ logo and the ‘post a week’ logo on this blog. Is this contradictory? Probably. They are both useful for me, though. ‘Blogging without obligation’ is an idea by tiffini elektra x: “After coming across what seemed to be the 4000th or so post on someone’s blog starting with “I’m sorry I haven’t posted in awhile.” I decided it is time to rethink what makes a good blog and the expectations that have come to be part of it. I am thinking that no one should utter those words again . . .and with that thought I give you Blogging Without Obligation.” I really agree with her idea. It is very difficult though to not start to talk about not having blogged.

Three men from Birmingham

Three men in Birmingham
I’ve been in Birmingham and ate a lot of good curry there. We also went to Stratford to the grave of Shakespeare. I made this drawing after we visited the grave and had some tea.

The holiday of my daughter started last week. I think I will stop posting on this blog during her holiday. I keep on drawing though. In September you will see the results 🙂

About money

Last week I bought a new box of ink cartridges for my fountain pen. Five cartridges cost € 2.50. I realised again that drawing gives a lot of pleasure and doesn’t cost much.

Twice a week I’m working out on different exercise machines

At the sport school: Independent Shoulder Press

Since April I’m going to the gym twice a week. I surprised that I enjoy it. First I do a warming up on a ‘elliptical’, than strength training on different exercise machines: like this Independent Shoulder Press. It strengthens the shoulder muscles and it is the hardest exercise for me.

Two men in the Coffee Company

Coffee Company Plantage Muidergracht

Customers at the Coffee Company Plantage Muidergracht in Amsterdam. When I was drawing this, another customer made some positive remarks on my drawings. I wished I could give her a card of my blog, so that was the reason I ordered the Moo business cards. Now they are already finished! I have to order new ones, but I’m also thinking about ordering Moo postcards. Or maybe some special design for those small stickers…

Visit to Antwerp

M and Antwerpen Centraal

We went to Antwerp two weeks ago and there I remembered our visit to this town in 2005. We exchanged houses, and the owner of the house in Antwerp was an illustrator. His materials and table was there in the living room. I sat down and drew a tomato. I was so disappointed with the result that I didn’t touch a pencil for another five years! The most important part of Danny Gregory’s book “The creative license” was for me page 43 (There are no bad drawings) and pages 54 and 55: “Living well through bad drawings”. The answer to disappointments: just draw, draw, draw.

Coffee in Antwerp

(Pages 22 till 42 were also important to me. After I bought the book “Drawing on the right side of the brain” of Betty Edwards, I found out these pages are a summary of Edward’s book. Danny Gregory’s summary and writing style are much more fun though and I also like his drawings more.)

Will the person I draw not be annoyed that I stare at her?

Coffee Company Berenstraat
I like to sit in a café. I read a newspaper, write and since half a year I draw my cup of coffee. Or I draw the people sitting there. Sometimes I feel unsecure about drawing other people. Will the person not be annoyed that I stare at him? Will they be angry, irritated or just simply not feeling at their ease? Should I ask permission?

In  a few cases the person I draw looked at me and notices I’m drawing him, then I smile friendly. A few times – when I know the person in the café – I announce that I’m going to draw her. Some people become very self-conscious.

Coffee Company Haarlemmerdijk Amsterdam

I asked for advice in the Every Day Matters Yahoo Group. Sarah Wilde answered:

I don’t ask, I just go ahead and draw, but I usually pick people who are involved in reading or talking or something. Depending on the person, if they notice me I either smile and ask if they mind (if they look friendly), pretend to be drawing something beside or above them (cowards way out, lol) or offer to show them. It really depends a lot on how I’m feeling.

Peter Sloan answered:

If they do notice and get upset, remember, it’s always easier to ask
forgiveness than permission.

I’m really curious what your experiences are. What do you do in this occasion? What is your

(The drawings above are the result of an exercise in the book Drawing Lab of Carla Sonheim. This exercise was inspired by the work of Sarah Wilde.)

UPDATE February 19th: I just found this interesting discussion on the topic on Flickr (I love the Internet).

UPDATE December 24th 2012: Andrea Joseph wrote about this subject on her blog. Three years ago she described herself as a “reluctant public sketcher”, now she is drawing on planes, and in airports, cafes, parks and streets.