I thought I’d be so busy with Grey Matter, that I wouldn’t have the time or energy for anything overseas this year. But – fate (and Art Safari!) has a way of throwing things at you, and when this trip showed up, I decided to take it!
So, I’ve renewed my watercolor palette, and switched out compose blue for a cobalt turquoise. (So yummy!)
A little geography quiz for you, can you name this country? Hint – it’s NOT in the northern hemisphere!
The creatures I most wanted to see, who made me tear up when we saw our first herd, and they are so beautiful that I wonder – how can anyone even consider shooting one?
The elephants. We were quite fortunate to see many herds, although I’m sorry to say I have no idea which ones we may have seen the day before. These magnificent animals were described in the brochure as “Large, grey and unmistakable”. I can’t put it into words any better, so I’ll just post these 2 sketches.
Not sure if you’ve seen enough, but here’s some more art made from my trip photos and sketches. I haven’t even gotten to the elephants yet, (my favorites, you may recall!) I’m saving those, and I may shed a tear or two while sketching as they are so dear to my heart. ❤️
Hyena – I wondered what he was looking at?
The giraffes were very tall!
Zebra – their black and white stripes were quite vivid.
Our huts were mostly quite clean, and (I think I mentioned) the beds were quite comfy. But somehow, these little guys (or gals, not sure) managed to enter and keep me company every day!
I even did a photo album titled: “There’s a frog in my …!” And of course, one of them got sketched.
With Zambia temperatures in the high 90s, the heat and dust made me wish for cooler weather. Waking up back home in upstate NY, the cool rain was exactly what I needed.
But – Africa, right? It’s now in my heart and in my dreams.
There is a lack of focus in these posts, so let’s blame it on jet lag, okay?
I’m not sure where to start, to share parts of this experience. It feels like words aren’t enough to describe it. Well, of course there are sketches, but maybe I’ll start at the beginning.
When you’re my seat mate, or in an airport, know that you are fair game to be a sketch subject.
Arriving at Thornicroft Lodge near Mfuwe, we had a perfect view of the river, with hippos and various birds.
Our safari rides into South Luangwe Park started on Tuesday. My dream on this trip was to see elephants, and they did not disappoint! So as not to overwhelm you, I’ll only post some of the sketches today. There were many fantastic opportunities to sketch, and we took advantage of them!
Yes, I’ve been busy, buying special clothes and repellant and whatnot for the upcoming Zambia trip. But on a quiet night recently, I thought it might help to practice sketching elephants, so I turned on a documentary, and here’s the result:
Pasted the stamp that arrived on my Zambia info packet, then realized I had plenty of room to sketch!
I also thought I’d try on an “outfit” while holding a sketchbook, and did a selfie sketch.
Yep, I’m a nerd! But you probably knew that.
I really should be practicing other animals, but… I have no idea what we will end up seeing!
For now, I’ll just practice sketching – anything, just to keep the pen and pencils and colors moving!
In spite of a lack of posts, I am still sketching, but haven’t been posting much.
Let’s catch up and see what I have been working on. Way back in January, the same day I found out that my second grandbaby would be another girl (yippee!), I was also thrilled to meet Heidi and Mary-Anne from Art Safari! This is the company that I went with to (amazing) Morocco last fall.
They were touring NYC with a small group, and we were able to coordinate a short meeting at the Museum of Natural History. They are just as friendly and charming in person as they were via email. You might notice how much I enjoyed the dinosaur exhibits by my sketches here…
PS – Granddaughter #2 arrived recently and all are doing well!
My 3rd sketch at the museum – I feel like I warmed up with the first two!
My 2nd sketch of the day
Dinosaur at the Museum of Natural History – His head was sticking out of the room to show how large he was!
Day 1 started off with a short art lesson on the roof. Temperatures were comfortable mid 70s the entire week. Karen (of Art Safari) had some really great tips and instructions on perspective, and how to “shrink” people as they get further away, depending if you are sitting or standing. She also gave a few pointers on the different arch types in buildings.
Our first lesson was valuable with so many people around!
Then, we were off exploring this new town. So many sights, sounds, people and creatures – it could have been overwhelming to the senses, but Karen got us sketching first thing, and that definitely got me focused: What do I want to sketch? Study it before starting. Then, just make the lines. Everything else slowly fades away.
After a bit, we all stopped for a break. The mint tea again! Oh joy. I so need to learn to re-create at home. But it’s never the same, is it?
Then more walking, some lunch and more sketching. (Exactly what I came for!) We found (I should say Abdul found it!) a shop that sold spices and watercolor pigments. The owner happily demonstrated the various colors, which several of us went back to purchase later.
Watercolor Pigments such as mogador blue and blue marjorelle
Closed up the afternoon sketching in a square with colorful rugs for sale, displayed on the sidewalk, even hanging from trees!