Sketching Sydney – Chatswood NSW

August 10, 2012

Still a slave to habit, but lots of new ideas are at work in my head, even if I’m slow to put them into practice. The smaller 4×6″ sketchbook is for when I’m not carrying a bag – “opportunistic” as opposed to “planned” urban sketching.

Took a very quick detour to take in the new Performing Arts Centre, which I’d read about recently. It occupied a much larger space than I was anticipating, fronting directly on to Victoria Road in part. Obviously I need to go back and study its veils of white walls more closely and from different angles. Checking out the concert hall interior would be fun too. Parts of Victoria Road closer to the railway station have very good public seating for drawing people (coming to you obliquely for quite a distance) and the footpath is wide enough in places to draw the outdoor mall scene with food sellers, especially from outside vacant shopfronts) but my particular angle here was a bit difficult footpath-wise. 2-3mins max.; I was expected elsewhere.

Later on, outside the Chinese cake shop in Orchard Road looking across to Help Street (and the restored railway building rendered helpless and in miniature by the soaring towers all around), I stuck to the Veronica Lawlor principle of thumbnails (but not so quick as to not go back for tonal values). Again, very rushed – on the way to somewhere else. The restored railway building (far left) would have formed a second conflicting focal point, so at least I’m clearer about what to come back and look at next time. I’d better be quick though, this is another high-rise tower going up over the railway track, symbolic of the huge architectural changes going on here in recent times. Interestingly, the heavily ornamented facades of the very few old buildings still standing shine out all the more: the restored Victorian railway building and the 1930s Art Deco pub right at the concourse, in particular.


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