Thursday, December 28, 2006

New sketches

Nowadays, I sketch at least one in a day. Whenever i'm outdoor, especially when the weather is cooperatve, I do live sketching. At home, I usually go to my photos' album. The color and atmospher would not be the same as the original image necessarily. In other word, I change it as I like.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006


We have all passed through the moments like to be just by ourself and experience sorrow or some other feelings deep inside. This quick sketch reminds me of this glorious moments.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Poerto Vallarta, city bus

I did this sketch from a photo taken in a city bus in Puerto Vallarta during my recent visit to this city.The basic lines are in watercolor penci, highlighted by watercolor ink and fountain pen. Waterbrush filled in with light w/c ink was added in last stage.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


I met Louis and his younger brother in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico wandering around a beach while their mother was selling mexican hand crafts to tourist. while I was sketching some scenary, I asked him and his brother to come and sit by me. Though they did not know English at all and neither me Spanish, we could communicate very easily. To get them attracted, I handed a paper and pencil to the younger boy to draw. And while he was busy with drawing, I made a sketch of Louis, the older boy.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

What is a sketch

What is a “sketch”?

Browsing old sketch files in Wetcanvas, I ran to a posting by : Katherine Tyrrell,
dated Aug. 04 which sounds very interesting and practical for
sketch lovers. You may read the main part of her writing bellow .

"A sketch, in art terms can be
a way of practising and refining your skills in drawing and mark marking
* an exploratory drawing – exploring how something works/might work
* a quick drawing – e.g. sketching in public tends to be time-limited rather than open-ended
* a rough description – it’s OK if they lack detail; don’t fill the page or are not even completed

* a record of something you’ve seen

* a record of one or more aspects of something you want to develop into a painting e.g. a colour study

*a preliminary study – for a later painting (done before you start to check how your painting will work rather than as an underdrawing on your final support)
A sketch may be an imaginative or a creative interpretation of reference material – but it does not involve meticulous copying of a reference photo.
Very often a sketch is a study of a subject that the artist can see – and consequently involves working and drawing from life. This is the sort of sketch we will focus on in this lesson.
Why sketch?
Sketching broadens and enhances your basic skill base. As you practice and progress, sketching will also help you to:
  • Develop your freehand drawing, mark making and observational skills
  • Draw something everyday – an exercise which will bring fluency and confidence to your drawing
  • Get a better record of the colours and tones you see
  • Practice how to crop a scene and compose a picture
  • Develop finished artwork without relying totally on a reference photo
People who sketch gain value from the following activities:
  • Practicing freehand drawing skills – tracing reference images and using grids can mean that some artists lose their fluency in freehand drawing skills or fail to develop them at all. Sketching improves freehand drawing. With practice comes fluency and the ability to draw more quickly and make more creative and interesting marks.
  • Drawing with minimal aids – when the only drawings aids you have are your pencils and maybe a viewfinder, you soon learn to develop your observational skills. Looking more carefully means you get better at measuring judging by eye alone. You also understand much better ‘how’ a view works – you understand the architectural perspective, the aerial perspective and grasp the recession which often gets flattened in a photograph.
  • Ability to see values and colours – unless you are an expert photographer, once you start to sketch and compare your sketch with photos you took at the same time, you will learn very quickly just how poor photographs are at capturing the true range of tonal values that you have seen. In addition, because you learn to look more carefully at colours, you will also begin to understand how most photographs can distort both contrast and colour, particularly on very bright days. Take photographs to record details and check drawing and sketch to get values and colours correct.
  • Ability to see ‘pictures’ - Once you start to sketch and practice looking at your environment more, you will start to “see pictures” everywhere you go. For many people this marks the point when they know they are beginning to think like an artist. You’ll find you will start using your very own fingers and thumbs to construct a viewfinder to check out potential images to sketch. (Do try to avoid driving the car at the same time!) You will soon find yourself wanting to learn more about about the design and composition of your drawings and paintings. You will want to practice sketching to develop your skills in making choices in this area.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


After reading an article abour waterbrush by Russ ( and viewing some of his waterbrush works, I thought it would be a good idea to start with it for sketching. So, yesterday,I bought a hulbein brush with some transprant watercolor fluid and started to sketch right away. After experimenting some lines and cures, I rathered to dillut the watercolor with more water for softer and more managable effects. The images posted are done with waterbrush and in some cases addes some pen & ink. I should thank Russ for initiating me to this new brush.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Drawing class

Today it was the last session of the 5 weeks drawing class I took with Erick Budovitch in Toronto. though before taking this class, I had done lots of drawing, sketches and paintings, he simply showed me that for a fundamental drawing, it is better to start from the very beginning. Through some hard and sometimes boring training he demontrated that for a good drawing I should forget the details for a while and just try to see the shapes in big masses and geometrically , eather in figures , lanscapes or still life . Seeing the values and contrast of lightness and darkness of the model come in the next stage.

The following is taken from the article : "In praise of drawing " by robert Genne in " Painter's Keys , published : Aug. 1st. 06

Did you know that between 1820 and 1860 there were more than 145,000
"How to Draw" books ublished in the USA? In those pre-camera days, gentlemen and ladies kept memories alive by drawing them. A book by J. Liberty Tadd instructed young women to sketch pigs while standing in a pigsty--"in order to more accurately reflect nature." Many of these books are now on the trash heaps of history, but they nevertheless remind us of other times and other values. This is being made clear in a current exhibition in New York's Grolier Club. "Teaching America to Draw" is worth taking a look at if you happen to be in the area.

Show reviewer Michael Kimmelman says, "Drawing used to be a civilized thing to do, like reading and writing. It was taught in elementary schools. It was democratic. It was a boon to happiness." He notes that these days we have acquiesced to playing a passive role as receivers. We consume drawings rather than make them. There are easier ways to collect images than to draw them.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Painting of the day

This sketchy painting was done with watercolor pencil. The background is soft pastel.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Washington D.C. journey

A week ago I took a trip to W.Virginia to partcipate in the engagement party of my niece Farzad.To escape the airport hasseles and American security checks and enjoy the fall sceneary rathered to go by bus . While I could have been happy with a few sketches on this route, a sudden storm on the way back to close to buffalo, stocked me in the bus for about 10 hours. The sketches in this section are part of the images I made in that trip

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

In praise of drawing

"Do not fail to draw something every day, for no matter how little it is, it will be well worth while, and it will do you a world of good." (Cennino Cennini, 1370-1440) "

"For those of us who would be fine artists, drawing is still the bottom line. Next to composition, it's the most neglected skill. A drawing a day keeps the cobwebs away. One in the morning before coffee is a credible tonic for a day filled with above average work. Canvas or paper, it matters not. "Good drawing forms the bones on which a strong painting hangs." (Chris Bingle) (In praise of drawing)
The painters Keys archieve,
August 1, 2006

Sketching for years has led me to drawing world again. Drawing is skelton and infrastructure of all good paintings. No wonder the masters put so many times and efforts into drawing.many art classes advocate painting before grasping the roots and essense of drawing these days. Though the students will be happy not spending much time to draw and jump right away into painting, their teachers are in fact not leading them in the right trait.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Lugano, Switzerland

These images show Lugano the city in Swiss, close to Milano. The Mountain in the background is Sansalvadora' seen from all angles in the city. You can walk along the lake in less than an hour. I've done some paintings, sketches and photography from the scenes of the city and surroundings on different occasions.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Abstract image

As a flavour to sketches, I thought why not post some sketchy paintings once in a while between the real sketches .


This sketch was done in a couple of minutes. While I was going to draw a bit more detail of this figure she changed her pose quickly and left the location where I spotted her. I had to stop .

Friday, September 22, 2006

Sketch of old man in N.York Library

You can find people from all walks of life in main libraries in Toronto. Libraries, as in book stores, in North America are very alive and active. The first thing that impressed me in the time of my studies in the States back in the 70's was the different large libraries you could find everywhere at campus or in the city. I usually spent a few hours a week in North York library and my favourite book store Chapters. I sketched this old serious gentleman in the same library. He was so mean that I hesitated to sketch him right away. So, after I was sure that he was busy looking at the paper I made this quick sketch of him.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


Sun flower is my favourit flower which you may see everywhere you go from mid summer up to mid Fall . The seeds spread around very easily. I have painted several live sunflowers that you may see in the still life gallery in my website : . Recently, some friends of mine have become interested in this painting which appears on top of my website . Since the original is not in a larg size, if interested, I can reproduce it ias you want.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Corner of Yonge & Church, North york. Toronto

this small size grave yard is on my way to everywhere. No matter where I go in the city, I have to pass by it. The night this pic was shot was a Sunday which luckilly the camara was in my pocket. Today I had a chance to take a more lighter one. I always envy the people who respect the culture and the past. According to the its profile, when there was no Yonge St, and more farm lands were around, this graveyard was part of the church right on the other side. It is good to have the dead not too far from us , isn't it ? There is a full moon and a reflection of the street lights on the standing tomb.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Testing the water

I'm testing the sketch papers I bought recently from the "Above the ground", art shop. The paper is good for sketches with dry and light washe . I changed the setting totally, From studio to a bright sea side. Also I tried the whole washes with no prior design. The shadows are emphezied by watercolor pencil. The hair is darkened with pen and ink for a better effects.


Sunday Sep. 10 Old painting

This is one of the first watercolor paintings I made in mid 90's with not much of technic knowledge . FirstI I soaked the paper in water and did a wet in wet brush work for most parts. Roses are done with dried brush. To paint loosely with not much overworks, is kind of ideal for me now.The joys of Sketching almost every other day, has made me lasy to work on more datailed paintings. May be this is one reason that I would not be able to put a show in contemporary commercial galleries. But, I 'm looking for a place to put up mainly the sketches and small paintings with no frames. I will do.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

July 08/0 North york Library, T.O.

Sketching in position of face to face is much harder than from behind or from the sides. In libraries, bookstores or the coffee shops, when in mood of sketching, first i choose the location carefully. The safest position is when the model is not aware of, and you can study them a bit and make a relaxed sketch. In libraries you may find sitters in relaxed positions and not much conscious. i found these two ladies in the reading room where they were sitting apart toward the windows. I made them closer to each other to have both in one shot.

Media : pen & ink, and washes of light watercolor.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

09/07/06 Hippie time, Urbana Illinois

what a pic !!! I was browsing my photo albums that ran to this nostalgic pic. The time is 1971 . Yes, almost 35 years back and the location is in our back yard in Urbana, illinois, the city i did my M.S.studies in social work and privileged life studies in post Vietnam war. The chaps , besides me , are cool hippie yankees who all used to live together in a large house sort of commune kind of life. We shared the expences; rent, food and etc. that did not usually run more than 70-80 bucks in a month. The vegetables, like zuccinni, brucli, tomatoes and some sort of herbs was grown in the yard and had food enough to feed some uninviting quests who often walked to the house. The people lived togethernwere doing job in whatever they liked. Andy facing to us, worked in a bike repair shop. You can see the tiny mirror right in the corner of his left eye for not being hit by the cars. Ed. looking toward left was a math. instructor and boy friend of sue who is sitting in front side. There were three more in the house who used to do some other odd jobs. we all had a good time together and now i fell that I miss them all.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Fall in Toronto 08/31/06

When Fall arrives in Toronto , aside the cold breez , you will be witnesing the change of colors in trees, weather and even the sun. This image was taken in Oct. 05 from the balcony of my residence in North Yorth region.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

08/29/06 Toronto subway

This is a typical scene in subways almost all around the world. I had few minutes to sketch the outer lines and later on, sketched the hair and shades with watercolor pencil.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Sunny morning smile, 08.27.06 Babol,Iran

I can't resist not to include some pics from my various albums in this weblog. May be for the name of blog that sounds more skechy like. Anyway, I just decided that between the uploading the dailysketches, that take some time ,I will brows my photo albums and select the ones I mostly like.
In a short trip to Babol in the latest New Year of Iran (March 06.) , the next morning I took a walk in the Thursday market.While there was attractions a lot around, this beautifaul indiginous lady indirectly welcomed me to take her picture with a wide smile. She was selling bulk butter and rice.Alsi, I made a painting of her , with hope to catch her sunny smile. You can see this image in my website.

Friday, August 25, 2006

08/25/06 copy from Ed. Degas

This sketch is depicted from Ed. Degas, the French Imperssionist. I made it mainly with a light wash of watercolor and the rest with marker.

08/25/06 Location : Mel Lastman Sq.

This is Kiran, the indian teen ecountered with in Lastman sq. this week. Whie I was working on a morning sketch, she came to me and asked for a buck. She had a cute asian innocent dark face that in the first glance I wished I could sketch her face. With a few words exchanged, when I told her about my intention, she smiled and sat next to me , far enough to keep her face within my view sight. I tried to show her mood in this sketch. When finished, I paid her more than a buck.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

23/08/06 ,Marche, Toronto

This is Antoine. Last Sunday, we arranged to meet at Edwards Garden on our bikes. I cycled from Finch & yonge and he from somewhere in Scarborough, Toronto. We had a good time in the park. We were sipping our coffees that Christa, an old girlfriend of him , who directs
" A stroll in the Park " came to him and after a very quick reunion, she offered us to join her group of single strllers after a short break. I didn't know man that strolling a group of walk lovers and handling weekend natural trips is a job. In few minutes she strolled us around the spots that I wasn't aware of before. Then she offered us to join them in Marche, corner of Bayview and York Mill. We let them go and cycled to Marche ater they did depart. I took a chance to draw this sketch of Antoine while was drinking his beer and chatting loudly with Christa. He liked this sketch which of course is a bit younger than him.

Date :Aug. 23/06
Location : Second cup pattio in Impress Walk, North, York

As far as I sketch, I'm glad have enough for daily posting. I 'm getting more at ease to sketch and then with some light watercolor washes on, when got home. I also getting into sketching with different media according to overall set and setting. You can find live models everywhever you sit and with a small sketch book in hand, a cup of coffee in a friendly setting,. First you better to spent few minutes just to make a quick survey of the model. I usually rather to have my models position; side, or back to me. In this position , your model may stay unaware of you. My favourite places to sketch are coffe shops, food couts and side walk cafes.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


This quick sketch was done in seniors, art class in acrylic. In fact this is my first try of this medium.

Aug 23.06
Location : Chestler village
I'm trying to organize and write more about the sketches that I make in every occassions. This is Anna in the same class of painting for seniors. She used to be very polite and self critical. I liked to work and assist her. After helping her to finish her works, she would say : you are marvelous. It was nice to hear a compliment from an old humble lady. I sometimes helped her cleaning her fragile Hand after the class

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Johny is an artist paint mainly in oil . He is the motivator and organizer of a small group of plain air painter in Toronto. We paint together outdoor in different occasions.