What is on my table? January 2021.

Imagine you just walked into my studio in the middle of the day - this is a typical January 2021 table mess view: recently revived ackerman pen that made my January a very inky month, pencil sharpener (I found it in my drawer) that is working really well for some finicky color pencils (thick luminance pencils for example), gouache palette and notes and sketches on a project I am working on. 

Recipe: Borscht

There are many wonderful spellings of this word БОРЩ in English but I will stick to this one: BORSCHT. It is a very tasty Ukrainian beet soup, winter version of which is eaten warm. I will draw the cold one when it is more appropriate for the season :)

I drew this for my friend Suhita and she followed this recipe to make it and liked the result - so it is proven to work :)

Grateful: Sketching with friends online

During the times when going out to the library or cafe to sketch with friends is not an option I sketch with friends online. 

It is not a meeting. There is no agenda, no rules, obligations. It is a very low-key event that happens almost every week and I am very grateful for it. 

I just have a standing appointment with myself to be online at certain time, sometimes I am alone for 30 min - drawing. But usually Suhita Shirodkar joins me and sometimes others too. And for half an hour or so we can talk or be silent and just be together doing the thing we love - drawing.

In the past we sent each other photos of streets to draw, we tried live cams of different places, tried finding places on google street view or mapcrunch to show each other places we know or to find a completely new places we've never been to. 

Lately we've been using the window-swap.com to find a location to draw. You can read more about this simple site in the New Yorker's article here. I miss the snow (this year especially) so I've been looking for windows with the snow lately. 

Grateful: libraries

There are many things that are making life more complex these days and many things that are genuinely helping with that. It means a lot for me to look at things that are helping, so I wanted to pay them more attention and tell you about what helps me.

Here is one - my city library is working! (There will be a separate post about it as I want to draw some things for it - so not today). But in addition to my library, the system of the union of libraries works too! It means that I can order books from over 70 libraries around California and Nevada. For free. They will be shipped to my local library. And I can keep these books for 21 days with the possibility of renewing for another 21 days. Did I mention that it is free? I've been on a binge - hoarding bags and bags of books to look at pictures, learn new things, try new authors, read new poetry. 

Here are some of the libraries that loaned me books this week:

Beginning of 2021

In this household we are holiday omnivores and celebrate everything. So there is a lot of traditions around holiday season and a lot of gifts. I got inspired by Rama Hughes drawing his gifts and drew some of my too: