parade sketching

Fool’s Day Parade

The Fools turned out in force to celebrate April 1st in traditional Occidental style Fool’s Day Parade on Saturday. I donned my tutu and joined them along with sketcher friends.


Lamy Joy fountain pen and watercolor in handbook field watercolor journal, 8X8″

While waiting for sketchers to arrive I met Baan who was kind enough to pose. Her mermaid tail was a kind of hand-sewn blanket which added the marine effect to the gourd hat. A mix of themes creating a perfect fool-style costume.


There was time for a quick picture of us with our green “official fool” badges before the parade.


It was about 85 degrees in the shade by the time the parade got started and the parade was NOT in the shade. Wiltingly I marched along for a while.


Switched to the brush pen which gets the idea down faster when there’s movement.


After a bit of walking I ducked into the shade to watch and wish I had an umbrella. I’m not sure how I would have managed the sketching with the umbrella? And at this point the brush pen ink seemed to be melting, so I switched pens again.

The butterfly lady was added at the end of the parade when I was all warmed up and cooled down, sitting on a stool in the shade!


And this one, while sitting around with the other sketchers, enjoying the last bit of fanfare and then sharing of sketches.

Next year will be my fourth year of foolery and I’ll be ready again! Zero the Clown will be back with his declaration to “do anything that brings fun, silliness, harmony, happiness, celebration, relaxation, health, love, joy, creativity, pleasure, abundance, grace, courage, balance, spontaneity, passion, beauty, peace and life energy to thyself and all other beings everywhere.” I figure that about covers it.


Chinese New Year


Sailor (bent nib) fountain pen, watercolor on Fluid Watercolor paper

The Chinese New Year festivities and parade in Chinatown, San Francisco was last Saturday! This was my first time going, lured by the SF Sketchers Meet Up group. I followed some of the sketch veterans out to Market St., which was teaming with costumed color. We followed this band of Kung Fu students back to an alley where they were waiting for the parade to start.


These young girls were sitting on a stone wall with their red stilts and playing a game, gesturing and counting on their fingers and trying not to notice all the photographers (and one very brash sketcher who was standing a few feet away) who were drawn to them like bees to honey. Meanwhile I became part of the attraction, standing there with my sketchbook and paints, because several photographers snapped shots of me as well!


This young high schooler was totally absorbed in the warm up performance when I caught him. I’m standing on the edge of the band with their BIG music  rocking my socks. . .now that’s what I go to a parade for.


This one I did from my iPhone pic after the fact. By the time the parade started at 5 there was a dizzying level of activity, color, and mind numbing noise in every direction!


Back to the Workshop Cafe where our group met to share sketches. Such a fun and talented group, and so welcoming. Want to try this some time? All media and levels of experience are welcome. You can find the future Meet Ups on their SF Sketchers page.