Sketching weekend in Portimão #2 / Fim-de-semana de desenho em Portimão #2

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In a happy coincidence, Hélio Boto organized an Urban Sketchers Algarve sketch meeting in Portimão, with the cooperation of the city hall, on the same weekend that the sketching workshops at ISMAT were taking place. The weekend quickly became all about sketching! The theme of the sketch meeting was architectural heritage. There was, of course, a lot to sketch, as Portimão is an old industrial and fishing town, with its urban design deeply connected to the estuary of the Arade river. The city’s culture councillor toured us around a few gems in the old town during the morning, and then invited us to have a hearty lunch in a small, cozy bar, loaded with solid wood furniture, traditional kitchen devices and a whole ceiling ceiling covered in wine corks.

Numa feliz coincidência, o Hélio Boto organizou um encontro dos Urban Sketchers Algarve em Portimão, com a colaboração da Câmara Municipal, no mesmo fim-de-semana em que as oficinas de desenho decorreram. O fim-de-semana revolveu todo em torno do desenho. O tema do encontro foi o património construído de Portimão. Havia, claro, muito que desenhar, já que Portimão é uma cidade piscatória e industrial histórica, com um desenho urbano profundamente ligado à ria do Arade. O vereador da cultura da Câmara mostrou-nos as pérolas da cidade antiga durante a manhã e, mais tarde, convidou-nos para um almoço caloroso num pequeno e acolhedor bar, cheio de mobiliário de madeira maciça, equipamento de cozinha antigo e um tecto inteiro revestido a rolhas de garrafas de vinho.

The usual Urban Sketchers Algarve gang was gathered there, reinforced with a few new friendly faces.

O gangue usual dos Urban Sketchers Algarve esteve mais uma vez reunido, reforçado com algumas novas caras simpáticas.

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Sketching weekend in Portimão #1 / Fim-de-semana de desenho em Portimão #1

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ISMAT, the local university in Portimão, organized an event to promote its next school year to new and old students. Based on the emphasis that the courses in architecture and design have in the university’s portfolio, it seemed fit to include free sketching workshops as part of the event. I, together with expert sketchers Luís Frasco, Filipe Almeida and Hélio Boto, banded around 50 eager students and showed them some simple exercises that allowed them to explore and enhance their sketching experience.

O ISMAT, uma das duas universidades em Portimão, organizou um evento de alguns dias para promover o seu próximo ano lectivo. Como os cursos de arquitectura e design tem um enfoque especial no currículo da instituição, parecia natural incluir oficinas livres de desenho como parte do evento. Eu, lado a lado com os exímios desenhadores Luís Frasco, Filipe Almeida e Hélio Boto, reunimos cerca de 50 alunos e mostrámos-lhes alguns exercícios simples que lhes permitirão explorar e melhorar a sua experiência de desenho.

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During the morning, Luís and Filipe showed everybody how to differentiate the foreground from the background through different techniques: line weight, the use of washes and the amount of detail employed. Students explored the techniques by the beautiful shoreline of the Arade estuary.

Durante a manhã, o Luís e o Filipe mostraram a todos como se pode diferenciar o primeiro e o segundo plano num desenho, através de diferentes técnicas: espessura de linha, o uso de manchas e a quantidade de detalhe empregue. Os alunos exploraram os exercícios espalhados ao longo da brilhante ria do Arade.

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I took the morning time off to be their student and also to prepare some exercises for later on. After a quick lunch, Hélio took the lead on the afternoon workshop, showing a couple of perspective templates: a street perspective and a corner perspective. Students were told to go out and find those templates in the streets of Portimão and sketch them. Perspective is a tricky concept for new sketchers, but with few pointers, everything fell into place eventually. Later in the afternoon, I showed the students how to deal with moving people, just to allow organic, quick, expressive lines to flow out of their pens and pencils.

Usei a manhã para ser aluno deles e também para preparar alguns exercícios para mais tarde. Depois do almoço, o Hélio arrancou a oficina da tarde, mostrando dois modelos simples de perspectiva: uma rua e uma esquina. Os alunos foram encarregues de encontrar esses modelos nas ruas de Portimão e desenhá-los. A perspectiva é um conceito tramado para iniciantes do desenho, mas com algumas dicas, tudo correu pelo melhor. Mais tarde, mostrei aos alunos como lidar com pessoas em movimento, apenas para permitir que linhas rápidas, orgânicas e expressivas pudessem começar a sair livremente dos seus lápis e canetas.

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While Filipe had to leave early, the sunset saw a trio of tired but satisfied sketchers by the shore.

Enquanto o Filipe regressava a casa mais cedo, o pôr-do-sol assistiu a um trio de desenhadores à beira rio, cansados mas satisfeitos.

 

Books, birthdays and booze

Diana's birthday

In our first and second days in Lisboa, we ended up being invited to birthday parties that we didn’t know were going to happen in the first place. We just happened to be in the right place, at the right time, with the right people. Diana had her birthday celebration at home with a few friends. Simple and delicious salmon pasta went around, garnished by guacamole. Books were passed around and shared and taken note of. Germany won its match against Algeria

Márcia's birthday

The next day found us snacking snails, bifanas and beers, then crashing another birthday dinner party and following after the small crowd to a house for drinks. I for one was delighted that the Márcia, the birthday girl (plus a few of the guests) was from Portimão – the town right next to my home town. This way I got to hear that heavy accent they have over there and enjoy regional booze from Monchique: the notorious medronho and the less known (unknown even to me) melosa. The former is strawberry tree moonshine, bitter and warm, which Márcia explained that it is expensive to acquire, but almost every household has a bottle and that it is customary to be offered a drink of it as a guest in the standard Algarve home. The latter is liquor, sweet and mellow, distilled out of honey.