Thursday, 28 August 2014
There are a lot of ancient WW2 tanks, boats and planes at display, in museums and set up as monuments.
The Sherman tank was at display on the invasion beach itself, just as if it had conquered the dunes on D-day.
The plane is a restored DC3 Dakota, in the museum of Ste Mère Eglise.
It seems weird to draw war machines in these troubled times, when wars seem to flare up all around us.
At least on this D-day it was clear which side was the good guys.
Who can tell today?
Monday, 25 August 2014
This is a local foodmarket in Tarbes (France), held every morning next to the exit of a multi-story parking.
I think these are private farmers, because they sell only small stuff: 10 tomatoes, a few flowers and a box filled with peaches, garlic or unions.
It was next to the hotel I used to go a few years ago with a huge building project. I've drawn here before.
Friday, 22 August 2014
It's an open browncoal mine, used to produce electricity, and vast areas (50 km2!) are being excavated. Countless villages had to be moved for this project
These machine are huge, 100 meter high and 240 meter long.
I made this drawing for a friend of mine who organizes a vintage car tour (MGs) in the area around the excavation. The image was used as sign.
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
I made this drawing on the last days in Normandy, it's the island Le Mont St. Michel. Even though its riddled with tourists, it's still a fantastic town. We spend a whole day there, climbing the steep roads, monasteries and remparts. My company was patient enough to let me draw this scene, as we were sitting on the new (but not yet finished) pedestrian bridge running from the coast to the town.
At least it protected me from being overrun by tourist busses.
Monday, 18 August 2014
Saturday, 16 August 2014
Like painting the eye and glueing and treating the cherrywood base.
Here is Icarus in full extent. About 40cm high.
I also fixed the hardstone base of the Chameleon: here you see all recent glasswork objects together.
Thursday, 14 August 2014
The only thing I forgot, which would have made this perfect drawing evening even better, was a small bottle of wine....
Monday, 11 August 2014
He was a short period with Urban Sketchers, but left due to differences in opinion. He started a Facebook group called "Sketching Workshop. The aim of the group was learning and improving by discussing each others drawings.
He asked me to join, to post, help and comment on others. Quickly the group developed into a very active community of 150, with activities like Comics (which I hosted), portraits, drawing games, maps, online chats and interviews and many more.
I had long chats with him, but never had to chance to meet him in person.
He left a family of a wife, three daughters and a son. He will be missed.
Sunday, 10 August 2014
We also visited Sainte Mère Eglise, the town where the 101st airborne landed. They are well known because of the (excellent) TV-series "Band of brothers". And of course the part of John Wayne in the movie "the longest day".
We visited the museum there, quite impressive, especially when you realise the gliders were built from a few tubes, plywood and textile fabric. They someone got out alive is a wonder in itself.
Above sketch is the backpack as being worn by a paratrouper. It was on display in the cemetery in Colleville.
The other is the churchtower of Sainte Mère Église, a paratrooper got stuck on the steeple and became deaf of the ringing churchbells. I had full view from a nice sunny terrace on the other side of the street, while enjoying a nice café esprès. What a difference with 70 years ago.
Friday, 8 August 2014
Body Worlds (formerly Körperwelten) is an anatomy exhibition in Amsterdam. It used to be a travelling exhibition, which we visited before in Cologne and Antwerp, but it has a permanent location in Amsterdam now.
I would like to state that I have my reservations about this show. They use real corpses, which are treated with a kind of plastic, and then cut up to show the insides. It's hard to realise these have been living men and women. I also would like to add that the persons involved have volunteered to be displayed like this.
Having said this, it's quite interesting to see how we people are built up: it's unbelievable how intricate our body is put together. And how can such a complicated system be reproduced, again and again, generation after generation. And grow, maintain and repair itself.Each time I see it, I stand in awe.
This is one of the sketches. Arches paper, 70x33cm, watercolour pencil (Faber-CAstell) and waterbrush.
I had to scan the drawing in parts, and fit them together with GIMP software. Still, the top of the drawing is missing.
Wednesday, 6 August 2014
I have a lot more drawings of my Holidays, but here is a quick in between drawing from this morning.
The central library of Maastricht has an exposition on the involvement of Maastricht in the first World War.
The Netherlands were neutral during 1914-1918, but the war raged in full force just 5 kilometers south of Maastricht, across the Belgian border. The German Kaiser only wanted to reach France by crossing Belgium, there was no need to provoke the Netherlands as well. So they sticked to Belgian terrain, even made a difficult and expensive railway just 1 km south of the border at Moresnet.
This model T from 1913 was used for the transport of injured.
The picture shows the materials I used for this one: a Moleskine watercolourbook, a mechanical pencil, a Lamy fountain pen with Noodlers grey ink, and a 12 pan watercolour box (van Gogh).
Monday, 4 August 2014
70 years ago a guy called Elzie L. North, age 22, from Duval county Florida, died in Normandy France.
He gave his life a few day after D-day, during the invasion in Normandy.
Just a Private First Class of the U.S. Army,116th Infantry Regiment, 29th Infantry Division.
He is buried in Plot J, Row 18, Grave 14. Among 9.385 others who gave their life to defend our freedom. What can you say if someone is prepared to risk his life for the benefit of others, that he didn't even know, in places that he never heard of.
Saturday, 2 August 2014
It's a beautiful region with steep cliffs, numerous medieval castles, countless caves and baffling views.
And the warm reception we got in this place was staggering.
It's an 220 year old house, beautifully restored and refurbished by the French owners. They have three rooms to offer, one even better than the other. We enjoyed the stay and the warmth of the company of Christine Balhoul and her husband. I can and will recommend this place for anyone up for real French hospitality at its best.
Monday, 28 July 2014
I was on Lourdes again yesterday. We are making a tour around France at this moment. We already did Normandy and will be heading north tomorrow.
Lourdes is always impressive, to see all these ill and handicapped people get strength out of their faith. And all these young people pushing carts and helping any way they can. Touching. A quick sketch of the grotto of Bernadette with the sacred source.
Thursday, 17 July 2014
Horrible images on the internet, had to rework them in this drawing.
I mean, I have been to the Ukraine a few times, know how the country looks like. I've flown over the area a few times to Asia, and we often travelled with the travel agency that had Dutch passengers in this plane. It suddenly comes near.
Tuesday, 15 July 2014
Friday, 11 July 2014
I took a picture of a Le Mans 24 hour racing car from 1970 (a Porsche), and tried to draw speed.
I am not sure the drawing really conveys speed, I'll check in a few days.
I even wonder if the choice of watercolourpencil is the correct one.
Sometimes it takes a few days to see clearly if you achieved the goal you set for yourself.