Thursday, December 23, 2010

Last of the China Sketches

This page is from temples, restaurants, museums and what not. The horse and rider was a large brush painting and I added color to the flower which was a stone block. The orange shape is a carrot garnish from lunch.
We went up the mountain to the Kumbum Tibetan Monastery. No cameras but I was ready to sketch. My favorites are the door knocker with the silk scarves, the cubbies holding the prayer scrolls and the monk's
"Happy Face" kneeling rug, no really!

Then we went to the Tibetan Medicinal Museum which was quite interesting. There were walls of dried plant displays. The red silk banners and colorful tassels were hanging around most of the room.

Next was the Tea House in Mei Jia Wu village. Only the top two leaves with a little growth at the top are picked for the emperor's tea. The more mature the leaves the lower quality of tea. Then on to West Lake for a stroll and boat ride.
In Hangzhou after the lake we visited the Lingyin Temple. Yin and Yang, incense, pagodas, and lots of lotus and bats designs. I am amazed I only sketched 13 pages in 21 days. Not quite up to par for me but a grand trip and memory.

Robert Bateman 6" x 9" sketchbook
Pen and Watercolor

Monday, December 20, 2010

China Sketches

Here are some bits and pieces from displays at the Xinjiang Museum in Urumqui. From musical instruments, jewelry, flint and a colorful tobacco bag. It was great to see all the cultural influences.

These images are from the Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes. There were all these amazing rooms with statues, carvings and walls full of frescos. Buddhas, buddhas everywhere. And look, I found the post office all by myself and somehow walked out with two cancel stamps.
Just another crazy white lady.
The Gobi desert was very interesting. We walked on the sand to an oasis with a beautiful pagoda and then took a short, thank goodness, camel ride. This section of the great wall is mud and reeds and is thousands of years old. I saved my camel ride ticket. Camel #317
The bus helped me paint the Yadan landform. The bumpy ride was great for uneven colors. The rest of the images are sections of the walls, roofs, pagodas and tiles of places we visited. This was a real "sketchwalk", I had to sketch while I walked to keep up.

Robert Bateman Sketchbook 6" x 9"
Pen and Watercolor

Friday, December 17, 2010

China Sketches

I took a trip to China with a great group of people this last October. A little behind in my posting...okay a lot behind! We were there for three weeks and followed part of the Silk Road from Beijing to Shanghai. It was quite a trip.
We did a quick walk around the Olympic Venue in Beijing and then on to the Great Wall. I admit I didn't climb very high but it was amazing. The locks are placed on a chain on the wall by lovers. Many of them are engraved and don't have a key hole. Now, that's commitment.
These are some antique hairpins, a sketch of Heavenly Lake and a building from the ancient city of Jiaohe. While I was doing the building a Chinese tour came by and took lots of photos with me and gave me "Thumbs up".
This is me sketching Heavenly Lake. I actually got to sit and sketch for a few minutes. Most of the time we were on the move and going in one way and out another so sketching was a challenge.

There is a large well irrigation system in Turpan. These were objects on display in Karez. The bird sketch is a fresco in the Astana Tomb. There were four different birds but I only managed to capture one of them.

Robert Bateman Sketchbook 6" x 9"
Pen and Watercolor

Monday, April 26, 2010

Silk Road Exhibit

Back to Bowers Museum this time for the Silk Road Exhibit from China. It is a very interesting exhibit with lots of things to sketch. Would you believe Plum Blossom Desserts from the 7th century! Or an eyebrow pen and ink stone from the 2nd. How about a hair comb that is over 3000 yrs. old.
This is part of a child's silk robe from the 2nd to 4th century. I was really drawn to the color blocking and full sleeve. The mirror bag was also very colorful, I like the scrappy fringe. This wooden comb is well over 3000 years old. Amazing it is still in one piece.

These carved wooden figures were very interesting. They are wrapped in cloth held in place by wooden sticks. One had earrings and a simple carved face and the other just a face with painted lines. The carved female figure had just the remnants of cloth over the body. She looked great for being just over 3800 years old!

Robert Bateman 5" x 7" sketchbook
Pen and Watercolor

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Yikes! It's been awhile....

Although I haven't been posting, I have managed to do a few sketches here and there. In January during our big "Storm Watch" Yukon, Lisa and I sketched inside while the rain come down outside. These little ceramic pieces are from Yukon's collection of chop stick rest. I always look through them on every visit and took this chance to sketch them.
In February, my friend Elizabeth and I drove down to Sherman Gardens in Corona del Mar. It was a beautiful sunny yet still cool day and there is always lots to sketch at the gardens. I bravely attempted a turtle in a pond but unfortunately it was from a very bad angle. I did apologize to him as I left.
In April "TAL" the Tustin Art League held a two day Paint Out at Linda's house. Yukon called and off we went. Linda's garden was to be on the Garden tour the next week so it was beautiful. I couldn't resist the lovely Irises and they were just perfect for one of my grids.
Give me some rusty metal or some old wood and I am a happy gal. I love trying to get all the wonderful colors and nuances of these two textures. This is a 9 foot tall metal whirligig in Linda's back yard. Somewhat of a challenge as there was a nice breeze and it kept turning but it was lots of fun.

Robert Bateman 5" x 7" Sketchbook
Pen and Watercolor

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Holidays in Mexico

Really behind on my postings! These sketches are from a holiday trip to Mexico. Even though I was there for two weeks I only managed a few sketches as we were busy with a wedding, baptisms, troubadors, mariachis, baseball, picnics, dancing, you get the picture. Our family friends have a home in San Pedro in Puebla and this is part of the casita, little house, that is over 120 yrs. old. They use the courtyard to dry the corn.
In one of the rooms of the casita the corn with the husks are laid out to dry. When the husks are dry they are removed and saved for making tamales. Then the corn is moved out to the courtyard. The corn was yellow, red, blue and everything in between. Oh, did I mention they make their own tortillas...yum!
On Christmas day we all walked down to the local baseball field to watch a very loud game between the two rival teams of the town. Cachorros, Cachorros, Rha, rha, rha! Then we went into town and the big market day. Wow, is that ever an eye full. It was challenging to shop and sketch at the same time. Soon the bags became too heavy to try and sketch.
After all the "hub-bub" of the festivities we decided to have a picnic on the mountain. Their version of a picnic is 5 cars, 40 people, 2 bar-b-que grills, tables, chairs, and don't forget the gas generator for the two foot speaker. In Mexico, there must be music! I did manage to capture some of the beautiful wildflowers on paper.
We left Puebla and headed for Queretaro and the home town or I should say village of my son in law, Barrio Santa Maria. It was great to meet his family and spend a week with them. Once again I didn't manage to sketch very much but I was able to spend a little time around the courtyard trying to capture the whimsy of his mother's garden. All in all a fabulous trip. Can't wait to go again, soon I hope!

Robert Bateman 6" x 9" Sketchbook
Pen and Watercolor