Frog Fountain

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The Vejer Sketchers met up for the first time in months last Saturday. It was gorgeously sunny and we congregated in Vejer’s Plaza de España.

I chose a quick and simple subject; one of the water spouting ceramic frogs which forms part of the fountain.

And here we are posing with our sketches in front of said fountain!

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Life Drawing 3

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Here are a few of the charcoal and pastel sketches I made during last Saturday’s life drawing session with the Vejer Sketchers.

Many thanks to our delightful model who braved the first chill of autumn to pose for us in the Arte Vejer castle headquarters.

Concentrarte Vejer 2016

Yesterday, Sunday April 24th 2016, was Concentrarte Vejer‘s annual celebration of all things arty and crafty.

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Arte Vejer encouraged children to let loose their creative spirits by painting in La Plaza de España and a few adult sketchers, me included, joined the throng.

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I concentrated on sketching a tiny bit of the fountain in La Plaza with pen and watercolour before the sun came round and burnt the back of my neck.

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Springtime Vejer

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It was lovely to get out in the spring sunshine this Saturday morning with the Vejer Sketchers and capture this view of Vejer in pen and watercolour.

Tricky angle, hence the slanted sketchbook!

Alcázar de Jerez

Last Saturday morning I joined the Xerez Sketchers and Vejer Sketchers  in the Alcázar de Jerez, a former moorish fortress. We spent a couple of very happy hours sketching, chatting and comparing techniques and results.

And we were featured in an article in the newspaper Diario de Jerez entitled ‘The Mysticism of Drawing’

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Life Drawing 2

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I joined the Vejer Sketchers in the castle for another life drawing session on Sunday morning, easily one of the coldest days we’ve had this winter.

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Our model valiantly disrobed and while we drew, swathed in hats, scarfs and woollens, she patiently posed with a couple of meagre heaters and a hot water bottle to ward off the chill. Brave and generous to a fault.

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All sketches charcoal and chalk pastel.

Life Drawing

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The Vejer Sketchers met today for the first life drawing session in the new Arte Vejer castle headquarters.

life drawing, model, sketching, vejer sketchers, charcoal, pastel

 

 

The model we’d booked to sit for us couldn’t get her car started but luckily found us a splendid last minute stand-in and all went well until our half time coffee break in a local bar…

 

life drawing, model, sketching, vejer sketchers, charcoal, pastel

 

 

We returned to the castle to find ourselves locked out with all our equipment still inside. It took a fair amount of door thumping and shouting to attract the attention of the key toting tour guide inside.

 

 

All in all a very enjoyable if slightly chaotic morning. It was the first outing for my pastels too, I love the intensity of the colours, the granular texture and the smooth way they go on…I’m looking forward to conducting more experiments with them soon…

Rainy Day Sketches

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With the onset of showery weather it’s tempting to skip the weekly sketch meetings but these last two Saturdays I’ve been determined to persevere. For sure the white walls of Vejer don’t glow without sunshine but the brooding clouds lend a different atmosphere.

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Above, the old town of Vejer from a roof terrace in the new town.

Left, the church bell tower from my roof terrace in the old town.

Both pen and watercolour.

Hooray for roofs and brollies!

Autumn Sketches

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The pen and watercolour sketch to the left was my first of the autumn season, having been invited to see the sherry grape harvest in the the Faustino González vineyard just outside Jerez.

The grape pickers moved too fast for me to capture with my painting hands!

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The sketch on the right is of one of the old town gates in Vejer de la Frontera, you can see one of my fellow sketchers on the left.

 

 

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The last sketch in this trio is of the Roman aquaduct in the beautiful village of Santa Lucia.

Sketching Vejer

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my first outing with the Vejer Sketchers

 

Late last year (2014) I was delighted to be invited to join Arte Vejer, a community organisation which aims to promote visual arts and creativity in and around the Andalusian town of Vejer de la Frontera.

 

Vejer Sketchers is a subsidiary group of Arte Vejer and part of the worldwide Urban Sketchers movement.

 

 

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Calle Sagasta, Vejer, pen

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Vejer, pen and coloured pencil

 

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sketching on a roof terrace, Vejer

 

 

 

 

 

 

The sketching enthusiasts, from various walks of life, of different nationalities and ages, meet once a week; usually to draw in the streets of Vejer, sometimes joined by sketchers from other towns,

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Vejer Sketchers with sketch groups from other towns at Concentrarte, Vejer’s annual art street fair

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Calles Reyes Cátolicos and Rosario, Vejer, pen and watercolour

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some of the entrants in Vejer’s annual patio competition, pen and watercolour

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Ayuntamiento Vejer, Baelo Claudia Bolonia, 47th Sketchcrawl Cadiz, pen and watercolour

 

 

sometimes traveling to join sketch groups in other locations,

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sketching in the rain in Bolonia

 

 

 

 

 

life drawing with a model,

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charcoal and crayon

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charcoal

ejer sketchers, life drawing, charcoal, crayon, sketch

charcoal and crayon

or even drawing each other.

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watercolour sketches

In this Arte Vejer video, which features stills of some of my pre-Sketchers artwork, I talk (in Spanish) about my New Year’s Resolution to join the Vejer Sketchers, saying that street sketching in a group is brave and interesting and a great contrast to my usual controlled method of drawing and developing images in my studio with photos for reference.

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chorizo, pen and watercolour

Actually, the Vejer Sketchers experience has surpassed all my expectations; the group dynamic is incredibly friendly and supportive and diffuses the potential self-consciousness associated with drawing in public places (safety in numbers!).

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Vejer, pen and watercolour

I’ve enjoyed painting with watercolours since I was a child and the Vejer Sketchers have inspired me to try new techniques and different formats – my confidence, speed, motivation and skill have all improved.

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hibiscus, pen and watercolour

Come and join us if you can!