Monday, September 9, 2019

Amsterdam - after Symposium 1

I'm continuing my posts about my trip to Amsterdam, here are the first  and the second posts.
I stayed in Amsterdam one week more after the Symposium. I already knew this feeling - passing at the familiar places that yesterday were filled by lots of sketchers and now look empty, even if they were full of people. After the bust of adrenaline - emptiness... But everything ends, and it was a great opportunity finally to see the city, to stroll without any goal, to slow down, to feel and absorb, and, finally, to sketch! :)
One of the "must" Amsterdam points for me were visiting Van Gogh museum. The visit was very emotional. Van Gogh were one of my "mentors" when I was young, before his painting turned to be labels of vodka or cases of cell phones. I remember myself as a teenager reading his "Letters to Theo", amazed by Van Gogh's thirst for painting, his madness for depicting the life around him. I think it was one of the moment I thought - this calls to be an artist, his way. I love the way the museum shows Van Gogh's life though his paintings. I loved to see especially his small and less "famous" paintings, enjoying to experience them in real and imagining Van Gogh painting them. I also loved to see the interaction of the visitors and the paintings, people's reactions, the way art influence us from back in time and stay ageless. Here are some sketches I did there that help me to keep those memories.




I also visited Rembrandt house, another and very different Dutch painter who I admire - place turned to a small museum, featuring mainly his etchings, and it was exciting as well!
One more of my after-symposium plans were to take a boat tour and to see and try to sketch the city from the canals.  The idea were given by Richard Briggs, when we played with him "draw what you see from the window" on our way to the Royal Talens factory. Not enough that when we sketch everything is moving around us, now we're moving as well!  The low speed of the touristic boat, stopping to let people get on and off, allows to capture just enough to get the feeling of the places, and there are some repeating generic elements, such as tunnels, bridges, bicycles and other boats, it's possible to complete almost any time. It's really fun and challenging, and adds to sketching experience kind of third dimension.
Another fun and challenging experience were sketching the Pride Parade, which takes place in Amsterdam on the canal on boats! Colorful boats were moving too fast so I sometimes was needed to "mix" several boats together.  It was so fun!

Will be continued!

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