Sunday, May 22, 2016

Lincoln Fields Blossoms

Mother Nature decided the date of this sketch outing. We originally planned it for May 8 but spring was slow to arrive in Ottawa this year. Last week, some great folks on social media sent messages that the trees in Lincoln Fields were in full bloom!

The fact that the blossoms were peaking on the Victoria Day weekend meant that a lot of other urban sketchers were out of town at cottages and unable to join us at this urban sketching event. I was so happy to see that some familiar faces did manage to find time to visit.

There were plenty of other folks at Lincoln Fields coming and going, taking photographs, having picnics, playing with their children or sitting under the beautiful canopy of blossoms to read a book.

Artist celebrating her 75th birthday with a stroll through the Lincoln Fields blossoms
I met a woman (pictured above) who was taking a stroll through the blossoms on the occasion of her 75th birthday. She told me that the last time she strolled through the blossoms on her birthday, she was celebrating her 48th and she stopped to sketch the blossoms on that day! I learned later from her daughter that she is a gifted artist!

It was a blessed, serendipitous encounter that left me feeling incredibly inspired about art making and reinforcing the importance of seeking out places of beauty to sit and sketch.

My first sketch

For my first sketch, I sat close to the pathway so that any other urban sketchers could find me easily. This sketch took me around 45 minutes. I found the blossoms to be quite a challenge to sketch. The range of hues, the abundance of blossoms and branches, the rows of trees can all be very overwhelming

Birds (warblers, orioles, woodpeckers) landed all around me as I sketched and when the wind picked up, petals showered all over me and my sketchbook. It was lovely.
Abundant bird life at Lincoln Fields

The beautiful blossoms

Sketch #2

My final sketch was of a family picnic in the orchard - the family came over to see my sketch and the children seemed to like it. This family has a picnic in Lincoln Fields every year when the blossoms peak. What a beautiful family ritual!

Family Picnic
I plan to do this again next year. What a beautiful way to spend a lovely spring day. I highly recommend it!

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