From My Sketchbook – Week 2

As I mentioned last week, my musical performing schedule has intensified quite a bit of late.  And to combat the frustration and guilt over not being able to spend quite as much time at my drafting table as I’d like, I’ve taken to carrying around a sketch book with me so that I can fit in a daily quick-sketch, if nothing else.

This week’s sketches were mostly done on the subway to and from Lincoln Center.  In most cases, I had little more than a stop or two in which to try and capture my subject.  I’ve switched to sketching in pen – I’m using a cheap steel-nib fountain pen – since I’d rather put up with ink blobs than smudged pencil.  My sketch pad is small, only about 4×6 inches, so it’s also a challenge to scale the image to fit the page.  I’m timid about sketching people, but since most people these days tend to be absorbed on their devices, it’s relatively easy to sketch unnoticed.

Here are two of the more interesting sketches from the week…

Lady in the headband

Two ladies wating for the subway


Hope you’ll stick around to see more next week…

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Filed under art, Influences, ink sketches, motivation, New work, New York, sketchbook

Friday’s Thought – Naturally

Cardinal in winter

“A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.”

(Maya Angelou)


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My Favorite Things – Love, Hearts and All Things Cupid in the Big Apple

It’s cold and wintry in New York City, but with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, things just might start to heat up!

hearts in the snow bank

At the Hudson Cafe you and your sweetie can grab a romantic table for two…

Hudson Cafe

Or head south of the border for some Mexican food at Móle!

Mole restaurant in the Village

Curious sweets are on sale here…

Curious window

And you’ll find lots of curiosities here!

Valentines window Upper West Side

Caliente?  The equation couldn’t be simpler!

Muy Caliente

(♥ + 2)

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From My Sketch Book – Week 1

With my mom visiting this past weekend, I got the chance to play tourist and enjoy some of the best things New York City has to offer.  In addition to visiting various foodie spots around town, we also attended several great plays ( Every Brilliant Thing at the Barrow Street Theater is a must-see in my book!), and went to both the Metropolitan Museum and MOMA to see art exhibits.  While the  Henri Matisse: Cut Outs exhibit at MOMA is ending tomorrow, the Madame Cézanne exhibit at the Met will still be up for another month…and it is well worth seeing!

Included in the Madame Cézanne exhibit are a few of Cézanne’s sketch books.  Cézanne not only sketched daily, but was frugal, often using the same page in his sketch book for various different subjects.  I found the sketches in the exhibit to be particularly lovely, not to mention that they caused a light bulb of sorts to go off in my head.  Because my music performance schedule has become increasingly busy, there are periods of time when I can’t get to my drafting table as frequently as I’d like.  Carrying around a small sketch book and a pencil in my purse is easy enough…and the challenge of sketching something quickly each day appeals to me.

I was fortunate to actually have a chunk of time in which to sketch yesterday.  My concert loafers were the subject as I sat sketching and waiting for the the orchestra’s turn to play during the New York City Ballet’s matinee:

pair of loafers

Today’s sketch was done in a restaurant in the few minutes that my mom left the table to use the restroom.  My subject was a young woman seated at a table nearby:

Girl with glasses


Next Monday I hope to post a few more of my week’s sketches.  Hope you’ll come along for the ride!

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Friday’s Thought – Illuminated

Lantern in Central Park

“I have believed the best of every man. And find that to believe is enough to make a bad man show him at his best, or even a good man swings his lantern higher.”

(William Butler Yeats)

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My Favorite Things – A Behind the Scenes Look at the Elite World that is New York City Ballet

This past Monday – a very icy and frigidly cold night – my husband and I trekked across town to attend the movie premier of Ballet 422, a documentary featuring the creation of a new ballet by New York City Ballet’s resident choreographer and corp dancer Justin Peck.  The movie is officially opening in theaters on February 6th and you can watch the trailer here:

As a long term substitute musician at the ballet, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know more and more of the dancers and staff in the company.  At the premier, I was sitting between my husband (yes, that’s him conducting the orchestra in the trailer above) and Ballet Master, Albert Evans.  Albert, who seems pretty beloved by the dancers, is a sweetheart; he also happens to have some of the funniest lines in the film.

The enthusiasm, hard work and passion that the dancers display day in and out is quite infectious.  And it’s always a delight to see the ways in which they evolve and mature on stage.

(By the way, if you’re curious to see more of Justin Peck’s work, you’re in luck.  His newest ballet – to the music of Aaron Copland’s Rodeo, Four Dance Episodes – premiers tonight.  You can purchase tickets here.)

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Friday’s Thought – In the Dead of Winter


“Nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own.”
(Charles Dickens)

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