The Great Garden Sketchabout in Sydney

Following up from the mention on the recent Drawing Attention, I am very pleased to let you all know a little more about an exciting sketching event in Sydney.

Starting this weekend for 6 consecutive Saturday afternoons (from 12 Mar-16 Apr) the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney is holding a Great Garden Sketchabout. We will be meeting at the Palm Grove Centre at 1pm (the Garden Shop) before scattering throughout the extensive gardens for 2 hours of sketching. A special afternoon tea is also on offer – which I am naturally looking forward to! It is a part of a big festival – The Sydney Morning Herald Autumn of Arts festival – and as such the SMH actually had a special feature today – which included an advertisement and article on the Sketchabout. Read more here. How exciting for sketching to make it into the newspaper!!!! Not only is this a great opportunity for Sydneysiders to get out and do some sketching but there is also a competition and exhibition at the end!

Although the article has made a bit of a feature of me, I am only part of a wonderful team (sketching buddies Wendy, Annie and Alissa) and together we have been working with the Gardens staff to plan this event. Of course one of the important preparation is to visit and sketch the gardens!!! The more that I visit, the more I see and the less I feel I know it properly – there are just SO many things to sketch!!! The garden is far more than just an extensive botanical collection of plants- there are magnificent views of the city and the harbour, buildings, sculpture, fountains, animals etc.

In many ways it contains a social history of Sydney – an important part of the local Aboriginals culture before the landing of the First Fleet and within the first year of settlement the area became the Governors ‘Domain’. Each subsequent generation has made its own unique mark on the gardens.There is no doubt that since I have started sketching there I am realizing more of its significance! This is a sketch of a wall built by Governor Macquarie which I had walked past many times without really noticing it – and yes, there are a colony of huge flying foxes (bats) in the gardens as well!

Needless to say we are very excited to be involved. We have no idea how many people to expect…and hope the weather will be good for the first week. If you are in Sydney please come along!!! Stay tuned and I will post more later.

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