Holiday Sketching


What will the weather do today? That question is getting harder to answer. I used to be able to count on gorgeous days whenever we sketched, but lately someone isn’t playing by the rules. Well fine. We’ll get on with sketching and ignore what’s coming out of the sky.

A couple of found items today became our sketches over coffee. I’d picked a delicate flannel flower on the track earlier, including the leaves, so we could really observe the info. Soon after one of the girls found a perfect dragonfly, not alive but great for a closeup sketch.

Flannel flowers are very much part of the native flora on North Head. Quarantine station, just done the hill was where ships over the centuries had to land any passengers with viruses or plague symptoms. They were isolated from the population in an extraordinarily beautiful part of Sydney Harbour. Not everyone lived. Nobody was safe from the illness once they went down with it.  Nurses, child passengers, Navy officers, Chinese and Japanese crew members are all are buried in the surrounds above the bay.

Flannel flowers grow when the seeds have been dug up or disturbed, particularly where graves have been placed. Exactly as the red poppies came up after bombings or graveyards were dug in Europe.
They are the most beautiful soft white with a tinge of green on the point of each petal. The leaves are a wriggly shape and a little like the colour of olive leaves, more bluish the sap green.
Then we found the dragonfly. That definitely needed to be sketched. Amazing tiny detail to be seen as we all peered closely to see it all.

We finished the day with a quick sketch at Cemetery No 3. with headstones giving a hint of the story of people who never made it to shore after their long ship journeys from countries far away.
Not many flannel flowers as it’s a bit late, but still a glorious view of Sydney Harbour.

Next Holiday Sketching at Bella Vista on Wednesday January 17 ’18 at 10am.

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