Here in Chicago, we're lucky to have a wealth of world class museums to visit. Several of them, including the Field Museum, the Shedd Aquarium, and the Adler Planetarium, are clustered in a group next to Soldier Field known as the "Museum Campus". As a student, I made numerous trips in from the western suburbs to visit each of them years before I could appreciate what local treasures they are. Fortunately, I'm part of the Chicago Urban Sketchers, a group open to artists of all backgrounds and training, who are interested in sketching in a live environment, and our regular sketching meetup this month took us to the wonderous Field Museum of Natural History. Here are some of the sketches from that trip: This one is of a Peregrine Falcon, which has recently been upgraded from "endangered" to "threatened", thanks to the efforts of wildlife conservationists. This is a sketch of a Black Hat Dancer's costume worn by Buddhist monks in the ritual of the Cham dance, which is considered a form of meditation and an offering to the gods. This is the Field Museum's most famous resident, Sue, sketched during an earlier visit. She was acquired in 1997 and is, to date, the largest, most complete, and best preserved Tyrannosaurus rex ever discovered. Here's a sketch of a pair of fighting African elephants who, along with Sue the T-Rex, are featured prominantly in the main hallway of the museum. These elephants are one of the first specimens displayed by the Field Museum in 1909. Here's a fun video about the people & taxidermy involved in bringing the pair to life. And finally, here are a few more miscellaneous sketches of various exhibits throughout the museum.
It's been a while since my last post, which is for the best of reasons (busy with freelance assignments), but hopefully that will change (frequency of posting NOT the level of freelance work). I have a couple of bigger posts I'm working on, but in the meantime, here are some quick sketchnotes from a presentation at the downtown Chicago Apple Store last evening: The Mimimalists.
Josua Fields Milburn and Ryan Nicodemus are two guys who met in grade school, went on to successful careers, and ditched them for a stripped down, simplified existence which they discuss in a couple of books and will expand upon in a documentary which they're currently working on.
The hourlong presentation was full of inspirational thoughts on the benefits of paring down one's lifestyle as a means to improve mental and physical health. The grand message seems to be that anyone can benefit from looking at their environment and asking themselves, "Does the stuff I'm surrounded by really add value to my life?".
The Minimalists, Joshua and Ryan, are currently on a 30+ city tour to promote their latest book, "Everything That Remains".
I'm trying to get in the habit of doing more sketchnoting; keeping it loose and trying to boil down the essence of a story into a few drawings and bits of text. This past weekend's edition of CBS Sunday Morning featured the theme "That's Life"; stories about the way we live and how we handle death.
I'm trying to get used to doing quick sketch notes of news programs to keep in practice. Here's a few from yesterday's "CBS Sunday Morning", a show that I love and try to never miss. The idea here is to do this as often as I can and hopefully develop my sketch note techniques.
Something from the sketchbook.