A morning in Clérigos

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Porto, or how foreigners say it, Oporto, is the second largest city in Portugal. Although Lisboa’s known as the city of the seven hills (a rip-off from Rome?), Porto is way much hillier. Sitting in the north bank of the winding Douro river, the city pours down along the slopes of dark granite though tight streets, archways and a few ruins. Urban Sketchers Portugal Norte organized a few routes across the city for a sketch meeting – cross sections of Porto’s best. Our journey started in the Largo dos Leões, looking the tower of the Clérigos church, the 18th century baroque icon of Porto.

O Porto, ou como se diz em estrangeiro, Oporto, é a segunda maior cidade em Portugal. Apesar de Lisboa ser conhecida como a cidade das sete colinas (um saque a Roma?), o Porto é bem mais colinoso. Assente sobre a margem norte do Douro, a cidade escorre ao longo das encostas de granito escuro, através de ruas estreitas, arcos e algumas ruínas. Os Urban Sketchers Portugal Norte organizaram alguns percursos ao longo da cidade – cortes transversais ao melhor do Porto. A nossa viagem começou no Largo dos Leões, olhando para a torre da Igreja dos Clérigos, o ícone barroco do Porto.

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The Passeio dos Clérigos, an outdoors shopping mall cuts a contemporary path between the Largo and the landmark. A walkable olive garden covers the shops. Right next to the Clérigos tower, Campo dos Mártires da Pátria and Assunção streets draw the line between the late medieval town and the expansion beyond the city walls. It’s here that we start to notice the traditional street elevations of old Porto, with tight plots and tiled façades.

O Passeio dos Clérigos, um centro comercial de rua a céu aberto, corta uma via contemporânea entre o Largo e a torre setecentista. Um jardim de oliveiras circulável serve-lhe de cobertura. Mesmo ao lado da Torre dos Clérigos, as ruas Campo Mártires da Pátria e da Assunção marcam a fronteira entre a cidade medieval e a expansão para além da muralha fernandina. Aqui, começam-se a notar os tradicionais alçados de rua Portuenses, com lotes estreitos e fachadas em azulejo.

Shapes of reality part #2

António Procópio, FASVS, workshop, Amoreiras, Lisboa, Portugal

The second exercise of António Procópio‘s workshop at FASVS was to use our skill capturing shapes of reality, as in the previous exercise, and set a scenary where we would frame the sketch with an outer shape, like the void of an arch or between two trees. That frame had to be filled with the shapes of whatever stuff we could see through it.

O segundo exercício da oficina do António Procópio na FASVS era montar um cenário, usando a perícia adquirida no exercício anterior, onde um vazio serviria de moldura, um arco ou o espaço entre duas árvores. A moldura teria de ser cheia com as formas do que lá se encontrasse.

 

António Procópio, FASVS, workshop, Amoreiras, Lisboa, Portugal

The third exercise was the opposite: one had to start with a central shape, and draw every shape adjacent to it in an outwardly movement.

O terceiro exercício consistia em fazer o oposto: começar com uma forma central, e desenhar todas as formas adjacentes que lhe eram adjacentes, num movimento de expansão.

António Procópio, FASVS, workshop, Amoreiras, Lisboa, Portugal

Shapes of reality part #1

António Procópio, FASVS, workshop, Amoreiras, Lisboa, Portugal

António Procópio‘s workshop in FASVS brought us all back to basics. He showed us a simple technique to commit to paper the simplicity of what we see, rather that the categorized complexity of what our brain sees. Reality, António told us, can be decomposed in simple bi-dimensional shapes. As a warm up exercise, in the diversity of planes, objects and points of view that the Amoreiras park had to offer, we had to fill a spread of our sketchbooks with disconnected shapes. Just shapes, that represented a unity of a plane, a color, an object or a void.

António Procópio, FASVS, workshop, Amoreiras, Lisboa, Portugal

A oficina do António Procópio na FASVS trouxe-nos a todos de volta à base. Ele mostrou-nos uma técnica simples para passar para o papel a simplicidade do que vemos, ao invés da complexidade categorizada do que a nossa mente vê. A realidade, diz o António, pode ser decomposta em formas simples bi-dimensionais. Como exercício de aquecimento, de entre a diversidade de planos, objectos e pontos de vista que o Jardim das Amoreiras tem para oferecer, tivemos de encher um spread dos nossos cadernos com formas desconexas umas das outras. Apenas formas que representassem uma unidade de um plano, de uma cor, de um objecto ou de um vazio.

António Procópio, FASVS, workshop, Amoreiras, Lisboa, Portugal

 

Celebrating biodiversity

biodiversity, Gulbenkian, Lisboa, Portugal, flora

The 23rd of May was a day to celebrate biodiversity in the grounds of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, a lush park in the heart of Lisboa. Designed by landscape architect Gonçalo Ribeiro Telles in the late sixties, around an iconic building complex, the park holds several flora and fauna species, as well as a few sculptures, an amphitheater and a central pond. Two art museums and other art and cultural infrastructures are connected by several paths through the park, in a carefully designed and intricate network of art, leisure and nature. During the warmer weekends, Lisboetas flock to this public but safeguarded park seeking coolness, silence, outdoorsy leisure and a place to meditate.

biodiversity, Gulbenkian, Lisboa, Portugal, flora

The biodiversity day celebrations motivated several activities in the Gulbenkian grounds, including an Urban Sketchers Portugal sketch meeting. The job was to focus on flora alone. Not being a specialist, I chose my subjects by aesthetics alone. Would be nice to have a specialist insight on the species in the sketches. Volunteers anyone?

A year of sketching for the future

Eduardo Salavisa, Jardim das Amoreiras, Casa Museu Vieira da Silva, workshop, sketching

Eduardo Salavisa is a monthly instructor in the year-long program of sketching workshops organized by the Casa-Museu Vieira da Silva (Historic House Museum of artist Vieira da Silva).

Eduardo Salavisa, Jardim das Amoreiras, Casa Museu Vieira da Silva, workshop, sketching

His workshops endeavor to map the area around Amoreiras public park. In the february workshop, he challenged us to sketch the same subject three times in a row, using different levels of detail.Eduardo Salavisa, Jardim das Amoreiras, Casa Museu Vieira da Silva, workshop, sketching

The first sketch had to be done in 2 to 3 minutes. The second one in 10 minutes. And the last one in half an hour. Most of the color was added indoors, afterwards.Eduardo Salavisa, Jardim das Amoreiras, Casa Museu Vieira da Silva, workshop, sketching