Saturday, August 6, 2016

Royal Queensland Show - Ekka Residency Day 2

Today it was all systems go from the minute I walked through the gate and into the Showgrounds.
The very loud refrain of  "a land down under" by Men at Work was thundering from the Space Roller ride. Loud music is good if it is something you know and like.

Again today the plan was to explore and sketch a variety of subjects. This first one was from the little kid's area beyond the Show-bag pavilion. I was quite pleased that I managed to capture the two selfie-taking girls on the right. They only held the pose for as long as a photo click but I am really trying to train my visual memory. I take a photo in my mind to remember the pose and replicate it.

I had a problem getting the watercolour to dry so I decided to take the painting into the toilets and use the warm air hand drier but it was one of those ones where you lower your hands into a slot from the top and the wet paint darted off in little lines as you can see. Well I am always going on about the value of the accidental mark, so here are a few of those!

This next subject would have to be one of the weirdest at the Ekka. "A Triceratops Tiara Tea Party" with the dinosaurs all dressed up outside the Old Museum Building which is now part of the Ekka for the first time in years. 

Part of my duties as Artist in Residence is to give some demonstrations in the Fine Arts area. I had thought I would take in some items from a show-bag to use as still life subjects but in the end I decided to just wing it and sketch whatever was in front of the demonstration table. So this is some of my audience.

It is very special to be able to see large animals close up so I went looking for the horse pavilion. It was impossible to get a good position looking into their pens so I found an area where a couple of people were washing them.  There was so much movement and people walking in front of me that this was the best I could get. Results are uneven when you work this way.

These days I can't even imagine taking a photo and working from it in the studio. Everything has to be done on location or it isn't real. Working from a photo means nothing to me. Why even do it if you already have a photographic image?

The last one is just some random turkey and duck heads from the poultry area. They kept moving also but I captured a general impression. This is my favourite spot. I will be going back.

I realise I have to make a list of the "must capture" subjects and there are so many of them.

Back tomorrow.


  1. What fun you are having :) Love your sketches.

  2. Great blog. I was wondering about drying the water colours. What did the Masters do before the Dyson? Perhaps you need one of those little personal battery operated fans ... love the concept of visual memory snapshots. The poultry heads made me smile! Don't forget the woodchop.

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    1. Thanks Jennifer, Paper drying is normally not a problem if it is sunny. I have some papers that are great and some not so good. I just have to remember which to use when I feel like splashing out!