Images of Koyasan, Part 1

Well I’m back from a great trip to Japan so I can now upload some of the sketches I made while I was there. For the most part I managed to keep to my challenge of drawing something everyday, whether in my diary/sketchbook or an e-drawing on my phablet. I’ll bring you the drawings in several chunks.

Today I’m starting with images from the mountain town of Koyasan. This town is a religious centre for the Buddhist Shingon sect.  The main form of accommodation in town is at hostels run by the various monastic temples. The main drawcard to this type of accommodation is the vegetarian cooking that is prepared for guests. Believe me when I say that this food is not a form of abstinence (well apart from not eating meat). Here is a sample of one evening meal, for one person.

Dinner for one at the Jimyoin monastery, Koyasan, Japan

Dinner for one at the Jimyoin monastery, Koyasan, Japan

Guests, whether Buddhists or not, are invited to attend morning prayers in the temple. Prayers are led by the head priest, who is supported by other ordained priests. It was half an hour of chanting in a darkened space, lit only by candles, a time of focus and being present.

I thought it was also a perfect opportunity to practice fixing an image in my mind. This drawing was made after I returned to my room for breakfast. The first morning I was seated directly behind the head priest. The priest is marking the prayers with the ringing of a bronze bowl.

The head priest at the the Jimyoin Monastery, Koyasan, Japan

The head priest at the the Jimyoin Monastery, Koyasan, Japan

Two days later I drew another part of the temple furniture, in this case a cabinet containing images of the Buddha.

A cabinet containing images of the Buddha, Jimyoin Monastery, Koyasan, Japan

A cabinet containing images of the Buddha,
Jimyoin Monastery, Koyasan, Japan

This week’s cafe drawings

It has been fairly quiet this week. I’ve been working on exhibition applications of my own and also with friends so there hasn’t been too much going out and about.

I did have a quick coffee at the National Portrait Gallery, one of the newest national institutions in Canberra. They have a very welcoming attitude and encourage drawing and community participation.

Napkin and condiment box at the National Portrait Gallery of Australia, 24 march 2014.

Napkin and condiment box at the National Portrait Gallery of Australia, 24 march 2014.

I had my red paint marker in my bag so the red box and table number just begged to be drawn.

Back to the Bakery the next day, looking up the street in the opposite direction to my last Bakery drawing.

View from the Italian Bakery, Mawson, 25 March 2014.

View from the Italian Bakery, Mawson, 25 March 2014.

I bravely decided that I didn’t have to use my red paint marker in all my drawings.

Umbrellas, 3 ways

I  love my cafe umbrellas. When I recently found myself at three cafes in the one week, a bit unusual for me,  I couldn’t resist the opportunity to draw my favourite subject matter. One twist however, I decided to draw each one with a different medium.

The first was in my black ball point pen. I had already completed a drawing inside the cafe when I glanced up to see this group of furled umbrellas.

Repetition, furled umbrellas at the Italian Bakery in Mawson, 2 February 2014.

Repetiiton, furled umbrellas at the Italian Bakery in Mawson, 2 February 2014.

The next was drawn at our regular Cafe Wednesday watering hole. This time I used my phablet to draw using the SNote function (Samsung Galaxy). Very simple.

Umbrella drawn with SNote, 5 February 2014.

Umbrella drawn with SNote, 5 February 2014.

Finally, at the Beaver Galleries cafe I drew using my new fountain pen. I’m still working on using up the blue cartridge it came with.

Cafe umbrella at the Beaver Gallery, Deakin, 6 February 2014.

Cafe umbrella at the Beaver Gallery, Deakin, 6 February 2014.