Thursday, 2 October 2014

Island-Hopping with a Sketchbook

Okay, I promise, I'll stop banging on about Brazil soon. But, the thing is, I haven't even mentioned the boat trip (what on earth is going on with my knees below..?):

It was Brenda's idea - she's the kind of person who gets things done. She organised us all, then pep-talked us into it again, when we saw the cloudy weather that morning and started to dither. Here she is, in the red, as we make our way to the pier and the little boat we hired. Well done Brenda!

Because it was a wonderful idea. Despite the lack of sunshine, it was still warm enough to sit up on the top of the boat and sketch together, as beautiful scenery glided by. 

The sea was peppered with pointy islands. It was incredibly restful. 

We anchored just a small way from a tropical island and the more gung-ho members of the party jumped off the boat. A few of us swum all the way to the island. Then our captain rowed the others across to join us. We saw blue butterflies the size of your hand and bright red crabs scuttling on the rocks. A spotty fish came to investigate my toes... Bliss.

The next island we visited had a little bar cum cafe - we didn't swim to this one, but were ferried in shifts in the dingy, so I was able to take a sketchbook. 

I had an odd but delicious sandwich, deep-fried (!), then sat next to my mate from New York, Mark Leibowitz, drawing the view with the boat, above.

The sandwich lady had two little dogs which sat doe-eyed beside each of us in turn (you can see Mark studiously ignoring their pleas). I think it was Brenda who turned out to be the soft-touch (I gobbled mine down - no sharing!). 

We started back shortly after that, because the weather was getting worse. Instead of idling along, we picked up the pace, so it started to get chilly. 

Undeterred we sketched on: 

We piled on what little clothes we had with us (which is why, once again, I donned my fetching bag-lady look):

I was sketching in two different books, both home-made. One from ages ago, my first foray into sketchbook binding, but also one of the concertina books I made not long ago. It was perfect for folding out so I could draw bigger (although I had to hang on to it tight, once the boat really got going):

We made it back to shore before it rained and, as soon as we were stationary, it wasn't even that cold.

We found time on our walk back to do a quick throw-down of the sketchbooks, to get a proper look at what everyone had done:

I hope you appreciate how brave I am being in putting up that photo - what DO I look like? The pink T-shirt was meant for swimming, in case the sun was out: even I wouldn't deliberately match pink and orange!

We had a lovely time and, just like in Rio, it was great to spend several hours with a small group of friends, sketching together, getting to know one-another better and sharing a special experience. Thanks again Brenda. Good one.


Eve Barbeau said...

It's very inspiring to see you out there sketching even when the weather isn't great. I think the pink and orange sweaters are excellent together.

Lynne the Pencil said...

Thank you Eve. Well, at least there was no traffic to stop :-D