Monday, August 12, 2013

Sydney Urban Sketchers at the Maritime Museum

On yet another gorgeous winters day a group of us headed to the Australian National Maritime Museum. Many in the group had sketched here, but this was my first time. So many interesting things to sketch that I've not ever tried to sketch before.
I warmed up with a sketch of the Cape Bowling Green Lighthouse and then met with the others for an introduction and some tips on what's good to draw there. There is a fantastic range of boats to choose from. Some braved the tall ships whilst I settled on a pontoon to sketch the Epic Lass. Thankfully, it was quite a calm day in the harbour and the pontoon and boat only bobbed along quietly (at times the roll of the boat made for a change in perspective!) I liked hearing the tall ship behind me creaking on the tiny waves and gentle breeze. It made me wonder how much noise it makes in stronger weather.

Determined to get some colour on the page for this onsite sketch meant the boat alone took over an hour and a half to complete. I only had about 40mins left to go inside the museum and find a final subject to go with the boat and lighthouse. It was far darker inside than out, so the impression of the spot lit figurehead of Horatio Nelson was quite striking when I chanced upon it. I'm fascinated by these carvings because they give a personality to the old ships. It was really fun to sketch something that was already a caricature. I'd love to find more. I have a vague recollection of seeing a sketchbook online that was devoted totally to the sketches of figureheads! Fabulous idea.


Urban Sketching at the Maritime Museum, Sydney from Chantal V on Vimeo.

Thanks to the kindness of another sketcher, Phil, (who'd made a near 2 hour journey to meet with us all) for his guest pass and sharing his great knowledge of the Museum! Much appreciated!


  1. Wonderful sketches Chantal. I'm enjoying very much you subject material and how you are evolving in your art.
    Anne xx

    1. Thanks Anne! Sketching the boat was very different to other things I've sketched because it has so many features I've never drawn before. At the same time it was enjoyable as this boat in particular had such nice lines and I liked the wood panelling, plus it was so relaxing by the water!

  2. Beautiful sketches Chantal -- I think that the boat looks amazing! It wouldn't be so much fun sketching a boat outside where I live. Lucky you in Sydney!

    1. Thanks Sandra! We have been very lucky this winter in Sydney - perfect days to be outside sketching, actually far more bearable than doing it in summer :)


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