Wednesday, 8 June 2022

Waiting Room Stories

It’s Covid vaccination booster day at our local GP clinic so it was rather busy. This is our 4th shot, the first two were AstraZeneca and the second two Pfizer. The lady with the handbag between her feet kept moving her hands!

I seem to run into the same people in the ophthalmologist's clinic at each of my check-ups after my recent cataract surgery. 

I had barely a moment to do a very quick sketch of this elderly lady before she was called but I also sketched her 3 weeks ago when I had a bit more time. 

She always wears a very big coat. I don't think it's the same person who comes with her but I'm glad she always has a companion. 

A bit dismal that so many of my sketches at the moment are at medical establishments. Looking forward to better times ahead.

#FaberCastellPittPen, water-soluble pencil, waterbrush, #Moleskine Sketchbook, 3.5" x 5.5”. 

Autumn Garden

 Here's a sketch of our autumn garden.

I usually work in small sketchbooks but with my lopsided vision due to recent cataract surgery I can only draw much larger than usual. I now have one new long distance eye and one old very shortsighted eye and crayons and a Pentel Brush Pen are my current tools of choice. 

The vision impairment I'm experiencing has resulted in more looseness in the drawing than I can usually achieve! Hopefully I can maintain this after I get my other eye corrected in a month's time!

Crayon and Pentel Brush Pen.

Monday, 6 June 2022

A Room with a View

Here's a view from the home of some very old friends. The Dandenong Ranges can be seen in the distance. They are unhappy about an old aged home being built just left of the house shown below.

I'm happy to be able to sketch again after my first cataract surgery 3 weeks ago, albeit with limited and very lopsided vision (one new long distance lens eye and one old very short sighted eye). I like the wonkiness and looseness in this sketch done standing up and holding my A6 sketchbook close up to my face.

The details and darks were added at home from a photo reference.

Brown and black marker pens, #Moleskine Sketchbook, 3.5" x 5.5”.

Eye Adventures

Thankfully my sketchbook helped fill in the inordinate waiting time for my cataract operation (2 hours in the hospital's Day Surgery waiting room!). Sketching also helps keep my stress levels down.

Looking NW across the road to Monash Health Casey from the Day Procedure waiting room at SJOG Hospital, Berwick and then looking NE when I was moved to the ward to begin the prep for the procedure. It was another 2 hours before I hit the operating table!

Faber Castell Pitt pen, watercolour pencil, #Moleskine Sketchbook, 3.5" x 5.5”

Saturday, 4 June 2022

Sawtell's Inlet

 Outings with my grandchildren always tend to be slow paced and include some sketching. 

During the April school holidays I was able to enjoy some sketching at Sawtell’s Inlet with my 9 year old grandson who was finally able to visit from Auckland after 2 grinding years of closed borders due to Covid.  

The tiny fishing village of Tooradin, 57km south east of the Melbourne central business district sits at this inlet and is a quiet relaxing spot because tourists usually bypass this unpretentious township on their way to the popular holiday destinations further south on the Mornington Peninsular. 

There's lots to see and sketch at Tooradin – mangroves, mudflats, crabs, pelicans and giant fish heads left by fishermen after they clean their catch. We left feeling unexpectedly refreshed and calm.

#Sailorfude pen, watercolour, #MoleskineWatercolourAlbum, 5x8”.

Friday, 1 April 2022

Sketches From a Trip to the Bass Coast (Part 1)

Due to Covid restrictions, other than visiting family, my spouse and I have hardly left our neighbourhood for 2 years! Getting away for a couple of nights recently felt quite strange!

We headed to Cowes on Phillip Island and I got a quick sketch in over a pie at a bakery. We ate at tables outside surrounded by a group of noisy Arabic speaking seniors on a bus trip. Drops of rain sent everyone scattering. 

The Cowes Jetty was built in 1870 and on this day there was a long line of people heading for a vessel moored at the end of the pier. My sketch was cut short by rain but by then it was time anyway to head to our destination of Inverloch. 

The discovery of a new Malaysian-inspired restaurant (Pearl) on a suburban side street in Inverloch was unexpected and it was the first of some culinary highlights. The restaurant had a "creative" menu (like curry puff filling in house made Rendang flavoured vol-a-vent cases) but all our dishes had authentic Malaysian flavours. What a great dinner! 

This couple next to us were eating twice as much as we were and we didn’t even stay to see if they had dessert as well!

All the sketches on this trip were done on-location but colour, text and embellishments were not done till after we got home.



#FaberCastellPittPen, watercolour, #MoleskineWatercolourAlbum, 5x8”

Sketches From a Trip to the Bass Coast (Part 2)

At the Screw Creek Estuary, White Mangrove and salt tolerant plants provide cover for fish in this tidal area. The guy with the fishing rod stopped to chat. He hadn't caught anything that day.

My family has got used to me sketching at mealtimes. It's the time when I'm not rushed (except to make sure I get my fair share of the meal). We’d read excellent reviews of Tomos Japanese Inverloch but it had always been closed for lunch on the previous occasions we’d been to Inverloch. This time it was actually open! Wow! Excellent cooking! Only one waitress who took orders, served the food, attended to bills and takeaway orders but she managed brilliantly! 

Who was going to have the last Baby Tiger prawn!?

Sketching my spouse over coffee at Vaughn's Cafe which by mid afternoon was quite deserted. From their clothes, the people behind him looked like they had just come from some cycling event, they ordered very large cold drinks. 

Lots of time to sketch while waiting for our pizza to arrive at The Bayside Lady. I was struck by the party of 12 diners on one long table. No social distancing anymore! This restaurant had a book swap which made an interesting feature on the back wall.

We took a different route home this time – through the tiny township of Loch. There was not as much there as we had been led to believe. A suspension bridge, a few historical buildings and a couple of cafes and cute shops (including a shop selling ethically sourced products from Nepal!). I was taken by the beds of cottage garden flowers along the main road.

All the sketches on this trip were done on-location but colour, text and embellishments were not done till after we got home. I enjoy very much this latter aspect of travel sketching. It gives me an opportunity to look up more information on each place we visited and to re-live the experiences of the day. Perhaps some of my sketches reflect that time and place, something that's not achievable when drawing and painting from photographs.



#FaberCastellPittPen, watercolour, #MoleskineWatercolourAlbum, 5x8”