Category Archives: Great cities or places in the world

Huatulco, Mx

We are spending our last days of our winter retreat in Huatulco [ wa’tulko]. A beautiful, modern planned city with a different vibe from Puerto Escondido. When in Puerto Escondido, we stayed in the older part of the city. Routinely, we heard in the background roosters crowing, hens clucking, dogs barking and sometimes a child crying but they are sounds you become at easy with. Here it is very “ tranquillo”

In Huatulco, for myself, who enjoys plein air sketching it has everything needed – architecture, culture and people. However, the colour palette has changed to turquoise, pink, lemon greens, pale creams and cerulean blue.

There are several parks nearby with bandstand, manicured grass, shrubs and plenty of shaded areas. My choice is where the workers are up on the roof replacing tiles.

Bandstand, workers at work, watercolour, 2018

My next choice is the park of lovers across the street from our lodging.

Lover’s Park, watercolour, 2018

The main town square, La Crucecita, has a lot of shade, benches, shopping and restaurants but my purpose is the church, referred to as lgelesia of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Here, the Mexican artist Jose del Signo has covered the whole ceiling of the church with a mural of the pregnant Virgin Mary. It is worth the visit to see this image and enjoy the work of this Mexican artist.

Nuestra Sēnora de Guadalupe, La Crucecita Plaza, Photo from tourism Huatulco

 

Nuestra Sēnora de Guadalupe, La Crucecita Plaza, watercolour & gouache, 2018

The square is a place to enjoy the sunny weather which Huatulco offers 330 days a year with an average temperature of 28 degrees Celsius. I looked towards the water fountain and there is a sketch waiting for me.

Water Fountain, La Crucecita Plaza, watercolour & gouache, 2018

So for another year we wait to visit Mexico.

Parksville, Vancouver Island, Bc

Parksville, Vancouver Island, 2017

This month we made a trip to Parksville, Vancouver Island to visit friends. November is the rainy season and it did not disappoint with torrent downpours each day.

We managed well staying at the Beach Club, visiting multiple “friperies“, vintage, secondhand stores or rummage sales. There are other gems in this village; glass blowers, and potters but best of all at Coombs, Goats on the Roof  a “must” tourist destination. The locals visit often to shop and to dine at Cuckoo Trattoria & Pizzeria. It is open throughout the year.

When I decided to sketch in watercolour, I needed a dry spot and the saleslady pointed to the adjacent boutique filled with carpets, armoires, clay pots, water fountains and a collection of steel weathervanes.

My space out of the rain, watercolour, 2017

Courtyard at Coombs Market, watercolour, 2017

For sale Weathervanes, Coombs Market, watercolour, 2017

Pointe-du-Moulin & Vieux-Montréal, 2017

Many of us continue to enjoy the Tuesday plein air organized by Linda Drewry. This past week we spent a beautiful rain-free day at Pointe-du-Moulin, Notre-Dame-de-I’île-Perrot. The historical park is in summer mode offering tours of the windmill and visits to the stone farm house. Some of the staff are dressed in period costumes. So, when the lady of the house came and sat in the doorway, I decided she needed to be part of my sketch.

Old Stone Farm House, Pointe-du- Moulin, watercolour, 2017

This past Saturday August 5 Montréal artist Marc Taro Holmes organized an informal gathering with Australian artist Liz Steel and French artist Anne-Laure Jacquard  at Place Jacques Cartier in Old Montreal. All three are ardent sketchers and instructed workshops at the recent Chicago 2017 International Urban Sketchers Symposium. This was a stop over before heading home and an opportunity to sketch and visit our city.

Thanks to Chi Mai Vo for the photos

The day started with a downpour of rain, an ITU World Triathlon at the Old Port, incredible road traffic and street closures. I arrived late at Place Jacques Cartier to see only two ladies sitting on a bench with sketch book in hand from Upper State New York. As Marc said, “We’re easy to find- just look for people with sketchbooks and drawing boards!”

Eventually, everyone used the same strategy and with the rain gone and the sun out a final gathering at Jacques Cartier Place completed the day.

 

 

I am always aware of my environment as I sketch and today was no exception. I heard the cheers of the nearby cycling and running portion of the triathlon. Spain’s Javier Gomez Noya won the Montreal triathlon. He completed the 1.5 kilometre swim, 40 kilometre bike ride, 10 kilometre run in one hour 47 minutes 50 seconds. The women’s race was won by Australian Ashleigh Gentle with Canadian Joanna Brown of Ottawa in fourth.

 

 

 

City Hall, Jacques Cartier Place, watercolour, 2017

Nelson’s Column, Place Jacques Cartier, watercolour, 2017