I had to go out to Stazione Tiburtina with one of my students to retrieve his laptop. He had left it on the train when he arrived here in Rome, and we figured it was gone for good when a wonderful rail worker by the name of Francesco Bonelli sent an email to say he had found it. So we met him at Tiburtina, and he wouldn't even consider accepting any money as a reward. Outstanding human being. So I sent my student back on the metro and did a little sketching in a part of town I had never visited before. This is one of my efforts, and I was trying out a technique I hadn't used in many years - a thin black pen (Uni-ball Vision Exact) and a thicker black marker (Pilot Bravo) - in my Moleskine Large Watercolor book. I was having fun building the drawing for a little while when I noticed that the ink from the Pilot wasn't drying very quickly, and I was starting to smudge things up with my sketching hand. I finally got a bit frustrated and stopped drawing, thinking I might add watercolor later to flesh it out somewhat. When I did try to add watercolor, several hours later, the ink from the Pilot immediately started bleeding (you can see a little of this in the trees at far right). I know that many people use soluble inks to get this effect intentionally, but that's not what I was hoping would happen. So I called it quits and left it alone ... a worthwhile experiment.
I've had a few days to get back in the groove here in Rome, the students seem to be settling in nicely, and I've had a couple opportunities to sketch. I don't have a lot of time to write at the moment, but I wanted to get a few drawings up on the blog to break the ice. The first two are drawings I did this morning over Piazza di Sant'Eustachio, and the last sheet is a group of very brief sketches I did while teaching our first sketching class. I was trying to get students to focus on two things - perspective/composition, and light. It's really wonderful to be back in the city I love more than any other!
View Sketches - Roma in a larger map
I just finished updating my Google Map of Rome Sketches, after uploading dozens of sketches from years past on Flickr over the weekend. There are now more than 150 sketches geotagged on the map. As I mentioned in my previous post on this subject, I plan to use this map as a guide this summer, and beyond. It's obvious that I've been neglecting some areas of the city, for whatever reason, so this map has already given me a better sense of what to focus on in the next couple months. I leave in two days, and I look forward to seeing some of you in Rome and Lisbon!