I've tried to get in the habit of sketching after our morning tours. We tend to do lengthy walking tours (usually 3+ hours) in the morning when it's relatively cool and we're all relatively well-rested. At the end of the tours, we're often in some part of town that I might not visit otherwise. And, at the end of the tours, I'm usually very eager to stop walking or standing and just sit somewhere for a little while. All this creates ideal conditions for sketching, and shown here are a couple efforts that came directly from these situations. The first is one of the 13 obelisks currently standing in Rome. This particular one is in the Villa Celimontana, and it's just the top third that's actually a chunk of an obelisk, sitting on a granite shaft below. This one is from the Temple of Isis (one of a pair with the obelisk in Piazza della Rotonda), and is the smallest obelisk in Rome. It was nice to take my time with this sketch ... for some reason I've been shying away from watercolor in favor of pencil sketches, but this one helped to break the ice a little.
This sketch is from a bus stop adjacent to Piazza Venezia. It's a rather chaotic part of town, so it had never really appealed to me as a sketch subject before. But it seemed like a nice spot to sit, rest my feet, and watch Rome swirl around me. Lots going on in this drawing, so it was a struggle to avoid too much detail.
Next up ... a couple watercolors from Ostia Antica.