On Wednesday, Jan. 30th at 1pm, Chris is going to be meeting on the +15 level of the Watermark Tower (530 8th Ave SW) near Caffe Artigiano. The spot is just west of Holt Renfrew, and overlooks the 4th Street C-Train station and the old courthouse. He posted on our main page more details about it, but if anyone is up for a mid-week afternoon sketch, I hope you can join him!
My apologies for this late post. I have been overwhelmed with moving preparations. At our last sketch walk, several people mentioned that it might be different to go\ to a mall for our next gathering. Chinook Mall was mentioned and since it is the place where a few of us started the discussion about one day becoming a chapter of urbansketchers.org it seems to be a reasonable choice. It also has indoor parking as well as accessibility by C-train. (albeit with a few minute walk thrown in for exercise). I’d suggest meeting at the food court in the centre of the mall. From there options abound, or, you may want to hone your people sketching skills right there at the food tables. In any case, 11:00 am on Saturday, Jan.26.
On Saturday the 19th, we will meet on the second floor of Brookfield Place (225 6 Ave SW, Calgary) at 11am. This is the +15 level, and should be accessible from the Scotia Centre/Hudson’s Bay across the street too. There are lots of massive windows facing the various neighbouring buildings, and with an atrium space with trees, tables and seating, it’s fairly expansive to spread out in as well. I have checked with security and we should not face any issues. The only downside is that apparently none of the businesses there are open on the weekends, so you’ll need to bring your own coffee from somewhere nearby.
This Saturday as well, we are planning to take a nice group shot of all of us to be used in an upcoming issue of “Drawing Attention” to introduce our chapter. Let’s try to make it a really good turnout!
After a great time sketching on the +15 last Saturday, let’s gather at the upper coffee shop in the Central Library. There are always sketch possibilities but more importantly, there are a few members with ideas about sketch locations and we should toss those areas around. Plus, with my impending departure, we will need someone to step up to replace me as one of our administrators. AND I am hoping some of our newer members will come by and give us a chance to meet them. So, Saturday, the 12th, at 11:00 am at the upstairs coffee bar in the library. See ya.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
I trust everyone had a great Christmas and a safe and celebratory New Year. For the three of us who attended the Core sketching session, we were somewhat dismayed to find out that the 150 tree display left the night before we arrived. Who said timing is everything. So we sketched the giant tree that remained and for some, Santa greeting the children and others on his chair at the base of the tree.
For our next session, Belinda has been busy checking the Plus 15 rules and regulations on Saturdays and Discovered that the city needs to update their info. When a sign says weekdays, that may not be the case. The City worker also confirmed that if an area is open, we are welcome to sketch there as long as we don’t impede the flow of traffic. Good News!
Belinda suggested three spots for this Saturday, the 6th of January, but I am suggesting we meet at one of them and decide from there if we want to split the group over a few venues. So, bring a stool to the plus 15 between Suncor and the Bow. It’s a great spot for sketch views in a couple of directions and wide enough that we won’t block anyone’s passage. The time is 11:00 as always and we will have no problem picking a coffee spot to follow our sketching time.
‘‘Tis the Season
Okay, folks, here’s the deal. We are getting close to Christmas, like, danger close. So, when Belinda pointed out that there are 150 trees on display at the CORE downtown, we thought, “What a great spot for our last pre-Christmas/New Year outing.” We can sketch and finish our shopping in one fell swoop. I suggest we meet up at the Tim’s on the 4th level at 11:am or earlier, Saturday, the 22nd, and decide from there how we want to handle the time.
Back to the Books
This Saturday, December 15 we are back to the new library where there are so many sketch opportunities that one of our sketchers commented, “Oh, there are books here?” Personally, I have decided to try and-quick sketch people, which is an attempt to strengthen a weakness I have in this area. So far, in my sketches, one might be led to believe that humans have left the planet (with Elvis?). I am told that there are great views from the upper floors which I haven’t visited yet so I may head up there after we gather at 11 am in the coffee area on the 2nd floor (level? Mezzanine?)
By the way, in the Spring, we have got to back to the Atco Park. Fabulous!
Atco Energy Corporate Headquarters
Sorry I took so long and thank you Deb for a great suggestion. We are heading to 5302 Forand St SW, otherwise known as Atco Park. It is also accessible from Crowchild Trail. Their lobby / coffee shop etc, is open until 2pm on Saturday, the view is outstanding as Deb’s photo shows, and they are open to having us riff-gaff sketchers lazing about. 11:00 am Saturday the 8th of December SKETCH A CHRISTMAS GIFT. BE THERE! There is no c Train close by but there is a bus stop. Also ample parking.
Books and Looks
it has been suggested that if we are not going to switch to a two-week schedule for the winter months, we consider having the new Central Library as our destination every second Saturday. The library presents myriad opportunities for sketching, whether you want a view of some part of the inside of that amazing structure or prefer to take a vantage point overlooking a part of the city from any of the windows on all the levels. And so, this week, the library is the sketch destination on Saturday at 11:00. The C-train to City Hall station practically drops you on the doorstep so that is another plus when the temperature plummets.
11 am, Saturday, December 1, let’s meet at the coffee bar and go from there. If you have ideas for other upcoming locations, bring them along.
Fair’s Fair Bookstore, Inglewood
Saturday, November 24th at 11am, 907 9 Ave SE. Anyone familiar with the Inglewood neighbourhood has likely stopped in to browse at Fair’s Fair at some point. It’s an expansive second-hand bookstore with a lot of interesting nooks and crannies to explore, and should make for good people watching too. I have contacted the manager, Bob, who is amicable to having us sketch in the bookstore on Saturday morning, although with the disclaimer that Saturdays are their busiest days. He said it should be no problem to accommodate us as long as we’re spread out, and I told him that we’ll plan to leave around noon. I’m going to suggest travelling light and limiting to dry mediums if we can, and take it as a good opportunity to practice doing smaller, quick sketches and studies. Happy sketching and hope to see you there on Saturday!
Back to School
On November12th, Rod and Peter went back to Grade 3 to see if they could get it right. Actually, they had the pleasure of meeting up with the teachers and students of the City Hall School and, after sharing a few sketching ideas and pictures with the students, got to spend time sketching with the the boys and girls at the incredible new Central Library.
And so, we are really excited, Rod and I, and hopefully all of you to go back to the library next Saturday, November 17 at 11:00a.m. The library is an absolute wonder, affording views of the downtown buildings and businesses through multiple floor to ceiling window spaces. It is a hive of activity and yet, when we were there with the children, we still managed to find ample room to sit and sketch. A small stool is an excellent idea if you have one. I suggest we meet at the coffee shop, which I couldn’t possibly direct you to, but if you wind your way up the ramp at the edges of the building, you will find it.
Bad News/Good News
Hello all. The bad news is that I have been so crazy busy that I haven’t come up with a sketch site for us this week. Fortunately, this weekend is the end of the stuff that has occupied my time so completely. If Jeff or Rod have a site in mind at this eleventh hour, they could put it up quickly for all who could make it.
The Good News is that I have contacted the manager of Rosso’s (my son, Jason) and he will arrange with the Rosso’s, Ramsay to expect us there on November 10th. He says that we will have plenty of room there and it should be an interesting spot. One of our group mentioned that a two week schedule through the winter might be more manageable, so we may want to discuss that over coffee on the 10th. Meanwhile, even if we aren’t together, KEEP SKETCHING! Sketch your kitchen, your cat, your garage or those pesky neighbours. And I will see you at Rosso’s on the 10th of November at 11:00 am. 803 24th Ave SE.
Sunalta LRT Station
Let’s face it. The last C-train station sketching was a monumental architectural task. So hey, why not do it again. The Sunalta raised station affords more options for views and angles than the Kerby station did, as evidenced by the photos. And it looks like this may be our last chance at an outdoor gathering until next spring (except for possible surprise Chinooks). I hope for a really good turnout so that we can get the creative group shot that urbansketchers.org will want when they do a feature on us. 11:00 on Saturday, Oct.27. Hope to see you there! I finally have a Saturday!
The Rundle Ruins
As much as it pains me to suggest it, since I have to be away for a few more Saturdays, I think this warm spell of weather might just be perfect for sketching the ruins of this early hospital. It is one of the earliest examples of the sandstone buildings that were once so prevalent in Calgary’s early days.
Bring coffee with you if you want it because it is some distance to the nearest venders of any description. Great subject, though. 11:00 am at the Rundle Ruin site on Saturday, the 20th of October “IN THE SUNSHINE!”
The Bow Lobby
So, I have no idea whether anyone gathered at the library last week. I am quite sure, however, that following the 30 -40 cm dump of winter we experienced on October 1st, that our days of outdoor sketching are either over, or extremely limited. I am suggesting, therefore, that we gather on Saturday, October 6 at 11:00 am in the lobby of the Bow building. There are food and coffee services available and opportunities to sketch inside as well as a varied selection of views of the outside. From the upper mezzanine level, you might want to sit, sip, and sketch whatever captures your eye. It is also connected to the +15 system for either access or escape. Hope to see you there.
Memorial Park Library
Saturday, September 29th at 11am near the front (East) entrance. With all three of the USk admins unable to make this weekend, we needed to come up with a plan for a chilly and potentially rainy Saturday. I chose this spot because the brave/bundled among you can sketch the beautiful fall colours of Central Memorial Park or the heritage building that is the library itself from the outside. The inside has a number of lovely architectural details and a great vantage on the west side looking onto the park. This will likely be the perfect weekend for autumn foliage in Calgary, so I hope everyone can take advantage! I have spoken with one of the librarians there, and we shouldn’t expect any issues like we experienced last week at Gulf Canada Square. They simply asked us to be quiet and requested we not photograph any of the patrons. There are a number of cafes nearby to grab a coffee before or after, and they offer weekend tours of the building as well, if anyone is interested in learning more of its history. Happy sketching! I’ll be sad to miss it.
Gulf Canada Square
On Saturday, September 22, let’s meet inside Gulf Canada Square at 11:00. There is a beautiful interior if it is cold or wet, including views from the +15 upper level. Outside is a CPR engine and the locale affords us numerous opportunities that we can decide on the spot.
Working on our Core
Now that the weather is the ‘wild card’ in planning our sketching events, I think we need to be prepared for ‘in’ and ‘out’ options every week. So, with the completion of renovations to the Devonian Gardens, that indoor oasis on the 4th floor of the CORE shopping centre, I thought we could meet there, grab a coffee and decide whether we want to brave the elements on Stephen Avenue, the modern architecture surrounding Bankers Hall, or sketch one of the myriad perspectives of the gardens or the Core itself.
So, we meet at 11:00 am, Saturday, September 15, on the 4th floor at the garden end. Hope to see you there! We have been having great numbers. Let’s keep it up.
Back Alley Challenge
Okay, ask yourself, “When was the last time I spent some quality time hanging out amongst the dumpsters in a back alley?” Most of us would probably say, “Never!” But for one of our members (name withheld to protect the guilty), her answer would be, “When I took a ‘Calgary Back Alley Tour.”
So, you guessed it, that’s where we’re headed, next Saturday, September 8th. There is an alley behind the Palomino Smokehouse that has some real character to it and any number of perspectives you might want to explore. The facades of so many city buildings often cloak all manner of original construction materials that for me define ‘Urban.’
So, weather permitting, gather at the corner parking lot just east of Palominos at 11:00am and then we’ll make our way into the alley.
Once in the alley, there is a variety of angles to choose from. You may want to use the alley walls to bracket a focus on the Bay at one end or the Hyatt on the other. Or, you might want to do a close up of some of the great texture of mottled stone or crumbling brick. Any of the choices will surely increase you repertoire of subject matter.
Oddfellow’s Hall (Chamber of Commerce) 517 Centre St. SW
For those of us, for whom the Labour Day weekend does not include leaving the Calgary precincts for some exotic, exciting getaway, a sketch walk presents another opportunity to get together and do what we love to do before the weather prevents us from doing it so easily. So, for those resigned to a Calgary staycation on SATURDAY September 1st, I am suggesting we gather at 11:00 am on the corner opposite the Oddfellows Hall to sketch this historic 1912 building. It is a classic semi-flatiron style structure and the spacious sidewalk plaza kitty-corner from it provides a great vantage point. It is also easily accessible from the C-train station as the map shows. If you can make it, send me a message here. Being downtown, I think we could find a coffee shop or cafe after our sketching to spend some time together.
St. Patrick’s Island/ George C. King Bridge
**Please note. We will gather at the north side of the parkway near the Bridgeland Memorial C-Train station. But be warned if you are approaching from the downtown East Village side, the bridge is closed for repair and will be closed until early September at the earliest.**
Since coming to Calgary, I have always been attracted to the view of the bridge afforded from the Bow Valley Pathway, but have never ventured down to sketch it. The easiest access would be from the Bridgeland/Memorial C-train station. It;s only a 6 minute walk along the pathway to a couple of benches and the perfect vantage point. At 11:00 am, which is our usual time, the light hitting the bridge and the city buildings behind should be perfect.
There is also good access from the south side of the river, from the Simmons Building area of East Village. Whatever works. So, we gathered 11:00 am on Saturday, August 25, hoping for “NO SMOKE” at the benches on the Pathway shown on the attached map. A ton of sketch opportunities surround the area. Hope to see you there. Bring a friend!
The West Kerby Krawl
Good news folks. It turns out that Rod’s art show is actually next Sunday, not Saturday so we are on to meet up at the West Kerry C-train station next Saturday, August 18th. We will gather at 11:00 am in front of the Kerby Center, which is next to the eastbound side of the station. Check the map. Since this is Rod’s neck of the woods, we will let him point out the sketchable opportunities.
Hope to see you there. Once again, if you can make it, send a message from the Contact page. And hey, invite a friend! If you are coming from the west or south and plan to arrive by C-train, make sure you take the train bound for 69th St.