Monday, 28 April 2014

Sketching Antiques in Brisbane

On Sunday I joined fellow Urban Sketchers from Brisbane on a sketch crawl. We met at the Woolloongabba Antique Centre & Cafe. It is an Aladdin's cave of wonderful antiques and collectibles. 

There were so many things just begging to be sketched it was hard to choose. The Barber Shop was wonderful. The colourful decor coupled with a comfortable seat made it a perfect sketching spot. One of the barbers was happy to pose for us. I didn't do him justice but we had a good time.

 The Barber Shop - Ink - Fabriano Venezia Sketchbook ©2014 Carol Lee Beckx


After spending an hour or so drawing inside, we walked up the road and spent some time in the pedestrian precinct near The Gabba Stadium. I loved the corner building housing Absolutely Fabulous - it's famous for gifts. 

Absolutely Fabulous - water soluble ink & watercolour ©2014 Carol Lee Beckx

In spite of packing carefully, I managed to forget two important pieces of sketching equipment - my favourite Lamy Safari and my little bottle of water for painting. Sketchers are a resourceful lot so I used a water soluble Pilot pen and a black ball point pen. The Pilot was quite good used with some watercolours and a water brush, although I do prefer using my travel sable brush.

The old Moreton Rubber Building has been around since 1890. My recent sketch of the Bonded Stores in Margaret Street has spurred my interest in old buildings. This article from 2008 in the Courier Mail tells the story of this building.

Moreton Rubber Building, Logan Road Brisbane ink, gouache and watercolour
 ©2014 Carol Lee Beckx


A page pre-prepared with grey gesso that echoed the aged building seemed to be the right choice. However, there are drawbacks to using gesso. A good pen can be ruined by the rough surface and both the Pilot and the ballpoint weren't tough enough for the job. A traditional nib pen would most likely be best for this surface. On my return home, I added gouache and more pen lines with a fine liner. The toned paper is enjoyable to work on but I think in future I will keep to a watercolour wash or invest in some proper toned paper. My plan is to return to this grand old building to do another painting.

I had left my car near the Antique Centre so after lunch I returned and completed a couple more drawings inside. For these I used the Bic ballpoint and was rather pleased with the results.

  Blue Willow - ballpoint pen ©2014 Carol Lee Beckx

 Giant Fork & Spoon ©2014 Carol Lee Beckx

Old Telephone & Coffee Grinder ©2014 Carol Lee Beckx