Wednesday, September 28, 2016

In Gex

Today is a beautiful day, sunny, warm, and quiet. Yes, quiet because I already did the hard work for this week, so today I took it easy, and I relaxed. And when I am really relaxed it seems like the noises are less noisy, and that everything in general is more calm. Gex was calm today. Quiet, nice, sunny, and welcoming. Because the center of Gex is beautiful. With its little steep streets, with the old village houses all with their colored shutters, the squares lost in between the houses, and the atmosphere of a still a small village, even though Gex became a city many years ago. 

In the center of Gex there are two main streets, both going upwards to the city hall. Today, I first draw one, in one of these little squares. Rue des Terreaux is where the weekly market in Gex takes place, every Saturday morning.

When I had finished I had still some time, so I just walked around, and took the other street, which goes mostly parallel to the first one, and that is called Rue du Commerce. Rue du Commerce is narrower and steeper than Rue des Terreaux, and is full of nice village houses with shutters. I found one spot in the shadow, facing downwards, and just did a quick quick sketch, before running to pick up my daughter from her theatre class.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Sketching the Vide Grenier in Crozet

Once a year people in Crozet empty their houses of the stuff they don't use anymore, and a big market is organised. It is like a giant garage-sell, where everyone from the villages, or from neighboring villages, can participate. It is called a "vide grenier", which literally means "empty barn", because probably the barn, or the grenier, is where people used to accumulate the stuff they wouldn't use anymore. 

In a vide grenier you can find almost everything, toys, clothes, bikes, books, music, useful things and things that you have no idea what are they for. You can also find all types of sellers: professional ones, with high prices and who participate in all possible vide greniers; normal people who are still attached to their things so they put as well very high prices and sell little. And others who just want to not come back home with their stuff and they almost give away their things. 

And yes, the other thing you find it the vide greniers is buyers, or people walking around, people talking, touching, negotiating. People. People everywhere!! So that's what I drew today :)

This is the first sketch of today. In the background you may recognise the mairie of Crozet, which I sketched yesterday with my daughter.

The second sketch, people shopping, looking around and passing by, with the chapiteau in the background.

And the third and last of my sketches. The little bar restaurant where everyone buys their lunch, also myself :)

The day has been great. Super sunny, but not hot, nice environment, and nice people who stopped next to me while I was drawing and gave me nice conversation. Few of them also posed in funny ways and had a good laugh. So I'm looking forward to sketching La Foulée in Crozet next week!

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Place de la Mairie

It is already several days I want to go out and sketch something, but I have so many things going on at the moment, I really don't find the time. And I keep doing all the stuff in my to do list, but it never seems to get shorter. 
But then, if I never stop, then things aren't as fun anymore. Indeed, it's all about balance! And it is not that I did this whole reflexion, not consciously at least, but finally, today, I took my bike, my stuff, and my daughter, and we went off to draw. It was something very quick, but oh, it felt so good.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Expo Crozet 2016

And, finally, all that brainstorming I started talking about two entries ago was about this. This poster. For some of you it might seem a bit too much... whaaat?? for a poster?! but yes, indeed after a well done poster there's a lot of thought and care! This one is for an Art Exhibition, in Crozet, the first weekend of October.

Each year during the exhibition the artists have a contest among themselves about a given topic. This year the contest is themed "Black and White" (Le blanc et le noir), and that's why I was forced to go back in time, to what it seemed ages ago, when I mostly drew but seldom colored my drawings, and my brainstorming brought back illustrations like the ones in my twenties. Even these patterns, they go all the way back to my seventeens. Although the patterns, they never completely abandoned me.

So, if you are around, you are all invited to the Art Exhibition. As last year, I will be exposing my latest works, together with other artists of my village. And there will be paintings, photography, and other craft arts like clothing works. 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Patterns, it's all about patterns

And voilà the peacock finished. That was a hell of a work, and I don't know why, but it gave me a lot of thirst! I drank a lot of water while doing it!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Work in progress

Here's a video of the last illustration I'm working on... while working on it! The illustration is part of this same project I was brainstorming about the other day. So all this brainstorming lead me from that illustration to this one. They are quite different, yes, and this difference gives a very good idea of what the creative process involves, and how random it can be. 

It is my first video and there's room for improvement, but I hope you enjoy it!

Thursday, September 15, 2016


Sketching ideas for a fast project, this little drawing popped up. It was a long long time since the last one I'd made like this. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Works in Crozet

Since several days there are works ongoing in some of the paths where I use to walk my dog. I don't go there that often because it doesn't add too much to the walk, but it is a useful shortcut for days where my dog has already done a lot, and we still go out for a short last walk in the evening.

The path is a dirt road, with a little canal running next to it. My dog loves water, so he always gets inside the canal, which isn't enough to swim but it is to get a fresh belly when it's hot. Now, during the works, we cannot pass by there, but today I went alone, and drew a bit of the machinery. 

This is the first sketch I've made. In fact very quickly, because they stopped working for the day just after I'd got there!

At the beginning I was a bit disappointed, but then the quietness allowed me to get closer, and draw one of the machines in more detail, and in a more relaxed way. Because they really move a lot while working, and I had never noticed that until I wanted to sketch them!

Now, after having observed one of these beasts for real (because yes, I never look at things as intensively as I do when sketching) I guess next day sketching them while they're moving around will be less tricky (or not!)

Sunday, September 11, 2016

At the Forum

Since June, I've become the president of the Association of Arts and Culture in Crozet, the village where I live. This is an honor but also a responsibility that comes with many obligations!

Today it was the Forum des Associations in Crozet. For those not French, it basically consists on a day where all the Associations in the village expose their activities to the interested public. So our Association was also invited to attend. We organised an atelier of origamis for children, that they could later decorate. Kids had fun, and there was movement all around all the time we were there. I was quite busy helping them doing their monkeys, birds and fishes, but between folding and folding I managed this quick sketch!

Of course I did a first sketch and then got distracted and when I came back to it the ladies talking had moved on and were not talking to each other anymore. So between folding and folding I looked for them while they moved around, and I could finish the sketch. One of the three ladies had left when I had it all done, but the other two, they were happy to recognise themselves.

Lots of work this days... tomorrow, first day of drawing lessons for the older children!