Tag Archives: Brooklyn Botanic Gardens

Cherry Blossoms in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

sketch of cherry blossoms

“Cherry Blossoms” mixed media by Kerry McFall

I got to spend another Saturday with the Urban Sketchers NYC  group, this time in the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens – lucky me!!  What a glorious place, and a glorious day!  I’m told that next weekend is The Time to go for the Cherry Blossom Festival in the Japanese Garden, but I’m not sure that their festival could be any more wonderful.  There were hundreds of people getting the jump on the blossoms, so many that I could barely see the pond from where I sat at times.  Why aren’t they in the drawing?  Because I’m not fast enough yet to draw so many moving bodies… for now, the trees are the stars of my sketch.  Given that we were in the Japanese garden, and given that the graceful limbs of this weeping cherry seemed to arch perfectly over each other, this became something of an abstract.  I tried repeating the curved fan shapes here and there in the clouds and other foliage… I like it.

I feel like I have some catching up to do to reach the skill levels of the other sketchers, especially with capturing the gestures and movements of random people that walk through my line of vision.  I also needed to have my long underwear and a folding chair – it was beautiful, but after sitting for a while I noticed that my hands were going numb… brr.  There were two parts to the sketch event scheduled, so after lunch I moved on to part 2 a little ahead of the group, at the Brooklyn Art Museum across the street where it was warm.  What a jewel!  There was an exhibition of sketches there – I kept wanting to “turn on the lights”, it was so very dark, but the sketches were wonderful.  There has to be a better way to display sketches… I want to go to the Sketchbook Project Library before I leave Brooklyn to see how they do it.  And oh yeah, there were a million watercolors by John Singer Sargent…. total overload on Awesome…

sketch of seated woman

“Nude Woman after Albert Sterner” pencil by Kerry McFall

I chose this sketch to copy because a) the artist made it dark enough that it was visible even in the very low light, and b) because I love it.  A simple pose, simple lines, no fuss and bother.  The blue tag up in the corner is what they give you when you pay admission.  I’ve begun to paste/tape little tokens like this into my sketchbooks, they add a bit of – what? – flair maybe… just another graphic representation of being in the moment at the place.