My sister and her husband came to stay for the Elmwood party and stayed into the holidays, so I've given myself a bit of time off. It was such good family time, celebratory time, hang out time, and I'm grateful. After they left, I got out a couple of times over the last weekend. I went to Six at the Orpheum, and I got there a little early to sketch. It's such a magnificent building, and I always love sketching there.
Then Saturday my friend Christina was still doing homework for her architectural sketching class, so Henry and I walked over with her (after some excellent curry from Flipside Asia at the farmers market) to draw (me) and watch the world go by (Henry). I love sketching outings with friends.
Now I'm back to work and doing the Metal Museum Artists Market this Saturday from 10-4. Comfy shopping inside a huge heated tent, and a well curated group of local artists. It's my first time doing the show, and I'm really excited to be part of it. For those of you in Memphis their address is 374 Metal Museum Dr. The best way to get to the museum (and avoid the marathon traffic) would be to come down Crump Blvd, take a left on Florida St., take a right on McLemore, McLemore will turn into Riverside Blvd, and then take a left on Metal Museum Dr. We'll be easily south of all the hooplah.
In spite of starting it with tea and toast at 4am (menopause sleep loss always ramps up for me in the fall), I had a great day. I took Henry to daycare and went out to WKNO to record a radio interview about the Sunday party at Elmwood. Darel brought the new banjo that he MADE HIMSELF in for me to see and let me play it. It plays incredibly beautifully. I am so impressed with his wide ranging talents. After a big Costco run, since I was out east anyway, I treated myself to a Gulf coast scallops tortuga and a mango drink at Los Tortugas. I did a super quick sketch while waiting for my pick up order. I ate it at Shelby Farms and also got some grocery shopping in and a short nap before bringing Henry home. A good day.
Also here is one recent sketch of Henry. He's the best.
Some of us hung around afterwards for take away paella on the street and then a cupcake from Muddy's. A pretty perfect Saturday.
I started my weekend a bit early having lunch with my sketching friend Christina. She's still taking her architecture sketching class and wanted to draw a house in my neighborhood, so we headed there after. I'm so enjoying the second hand nudge from her class to sketch more, and it's always delightful to go out with a friend. I did this one with a dip pen and Earl Grey ink by Diamine, continuing my Inktober ink+paint trend recently. Today Henry and I walked over to the Dia de los Muertos festival outside Brooks and hung out with friends watching the whole parade of costumes and humanity go past. Henry discovered that he likes avocado, and I stuck around to do a sketch of the enormous feathered headdresses from a dance troup after my gang had gone on to get their growing preteen some weekend ice cream. I kept it simple and fun, not moving into color and just enjoying my still kind of new Majohn bent nib fountain pen.
I've lost a little steam on Inktober because I FINISHED MY BOOK and formatted and submitted all the files and am now waiting on a proof before I order a stack of them. But here are several I did along the way, and I'm trying to get back to it and finish strong now that the book is done.
I've been taking my sketchbook to the dog park, and sometimes I just visit with friends, but sometimes I manage a sketch. One woman brought her supper in and managed (barely) to eat on the picnic table with all the dogs checking in to see what was going on. In a similar portable food vein, I did a small nocturne of a food truck under the moon at a recent outdoor performance of The Tempest. So fun. Both of those are in black ink with my new bent nib fude pen. Below is a dip pen with Diamine spring green ink and lots of watercolor on top.
My friend Christina is taking a Liz Steel architecture sketching class, and I'm reaping the benefits. Churches were the assignment, and there are two within a couple of blocks of my house, so Henry and I got to go out sketching with a friend. Her class and Inktober both have been keeping me out and sketching more this month, and it's a great pleasure.
For a second time in a row, the church looked deceptively simple to sketch until we really got started. I got the light grey too dark, but it was still fun to do.
The Stanley Brothers had a classic album called Saturday night and Sunday morning of hard living songs and then gospel songs. Here's my take on the same phrase.
I'm doing better with Inktober than I can remember. I missed one day so far, but overall I'm sketching daily, and it feels great. Above is black document ink from DeAtramentis with watercolor on top. Below is more traditional Inktober with just black ink and maybe an ink wash.
Today Henry and I delivered new prints to Elmwood ahead of their big do this weekend. Kim nicely wanted to have some on hand to sell. So we celebrated meeting that deadline with a walk through the cemetery and some sketching. These are two different sketches on the facing pages, but they harmonized really nicely into one composite landscape.
Then I was starving, so we went to Casablanca for lunch on their dog friendly deck. Lunch is my favorite there because they have the best black tea in town (lots of spices and honey plus ginger brewed in), but I can't have it at dinnertime that close to bed. I had half a shwarma platter and a lot of celebratory tea, and I'll add some broccoli tomorrow and have another fantastic meal tomorrow. Leftovers are the bomb for a single woman who doesn't much like to cook.
Later that afternoon, enjoying the beautiful weather, I picked up Henry at daycare, and we walked at the Greenbelt Park along the Mississippi. I love the cottonwood trees that line the river. It's the same black ink. I feel a bit like I'm making a coloring book for myself (and it would probably be a good exercise for me to do paint first and then line), but I also like that the line stays more prominent. It varies from sketch to sketch for me whether I like it or am annoyed. Anyway, it's all good practice, and I had a ball sketching outside this weekend.
Martha Kelly is an artist and illustrator who lives and works in Memphis, Tennessee.
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