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Sketching Characters at Montreal’s 18th Century Market

September 7, 2015

New_France_Market_2015 (2)

Every year the Pointe-a-Calliere museum takes over their corner of Montreal’s old port to put on the 18th century New France marketplace.

It’s always a great opportunity for USK:MTL to get together and sketch.

I imagine most people have some sort of costumed re-enactors group in their area? These guys above are the Compagnie du 2e Battalion du Régiment de la Sarre.

You might want to scout around your own area online. Many cities have some sort of military re-enactors, a local crew of pirates, or a medieval history group. I highly recommend this sort of thing for a fun afternoon sketching characters in fancy dress – and an opportunity to draw as much as you like without your subjects running off. (Not that they won’t move, but at least they’ll stay in the area :).

If anyone else has sketches from costumed events (or might be a re-enactor themselves?) – why not post a link to your drawings in the comments – and tell us when and where the event takes place. Maybe there are some people in your area that will turn up for the next event – sketchbooks at the ready!

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New_France_Market_2015 (4)

For the artists out there, these are sketched in pencil while walking around following my subjects, and tinted with watercolor during lunch and teatime. I skipped drawing in pen and ink over the pencil as I sometimes do. These days I’m tending to do either pencil + color or straight-to-ink + color – but rarely all three, pencil and ink and color.

Even though I do recommend all three when teaching beginners, after a few years of thinking about this, I feel it drains some ‘freshness’ (and slows you down) if you do too much drawing before the paint.

So – as you get more comfortable, you can skip one step – and just get more drawings done in the session :)

New_France_Market_2015 (1)


13 Comments leave one →
  1. September 7, 2015 4:00 PM

    What a fun subject!

  2. permalink
    September 7, 2015 7:39 PM

    Hi Marc, I would like to buy your latest water color class. On line….how do I do that? Please. I took a class from Shari and she told me about you!

    Thanks, Bonnie


  3. Ruth T permalink
    September 7, 2015 9:09 PM

    I really love the loose style of your work! I’ve improved in my art since taking your Craftsy classes but I still have a long ways to go.

  4. September 7, 2015 10:58 PM

    Wonderful detail, sense of movement and personality in your drawings.

  5. permalink
    September 7, 2015 11:30 PM

    I signed up for your new class, Marc. Thanks. Some people today at Anacortes sketchers were raving about this new class! Thank you.


  6. September 8, 2015 6:31 AM

    Fabulous work. You inspire me.

  7. September 8, 2015 6:59 AM

    Hi Marc, as always your work is gorgeous and inspiring! I’m taking your new class, too-it’s great!

  8. Margaret Hunt permalink
    September 8, 2015 9:31 AM

    These are great. I thought about doing this yesterday while standing in the long lines at the movie theater. Guess I will next time. Thanks!!

  9. Dominique Gaillard permalink
    September 13, 2015 12:52 PM

    Hi Mark
    Absolutely fantastic spontaneous style, love to watch your progression. Congratulations ! I’m a fan !
    1 question: do you use frisket to preserve your whites ? (I’m thinking particularly about the waters and skies of your Key West series). It doesn’t look like it, but I just would like your take on this tool.
    Thank you very much
    Dominique Gaillard

    • September 13, 2015 4:55 PM

      Hey Dominique – No I don’t use frisket. (Liquid latex used to seal the paper and thereby preserve whites when removed). I just ‘reserve the whites’ – as in, everything white is just what’s left un-touched. I suppose many artists use frisket to good effect – but I’ve never found it necessary, and I think it would slow me down to take the extra step.

      • Dominique Gaillard permalink
        September 13, 2015 10:12 PM

        Thanks Mark, I thought you didn’t and wouldn’t given your free loose style. I asked because I’ve experimented and found frisket to make the whites ‘artificial’ looking, but have also seen some very skilled applications by other artists.

  10. September 9, 2016 6:28 AM

    Good job, I love your sketches. You really do a good job, keep it up👍

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