24 August 2012

Sketching local history...live!

Yvan (in period costume), Céline, Katherine
and Sylvie sketch a young festival participant.
Photo by Jacques Laroche, 2012
Several Quebec City sketchers participated in Quebec City's summer cultural festival by joining and sketching les Fêtes de la Nouvelle-France.  Recording this annual celebration by hand is quite appropriate, as the festival highlight's Quebec's French origins, and the creativity and determination required of the first habitants who settled in this province.  

If you were there, and sketched the festivities, please consider sharing your sketches here!  We'll be posting a collection of sketches related to our monthly theme at the end of the month, and would love to include yours.

Local sketchers Larry and Yvan shared images and impressions of the event.  Keep scrolling for Larry's description of the festival, and several sketches and photos from Larry and Yvan.

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Larry said:

Nicolas, a local sketcher, marching in the parade.
Photo by Larry D. Marshall, 2012
"This is only a sorta-kinda sketching post. Last night was the beginning of Fete de Nouvelle France, which is a celebration of the founding of an official French presence in North America (1603). Sam Champlain founded Quebec City in 1608. Anyway, the five-day festival is launched with a parade and my wife and I went to take photos (things move too fast for slow Larry to sketch). As we were watching, my sketching buddy Nicolas came strutting by, waving a large flag. I snapped this shot of him and share it here as evidence of the fun I'm having with my new-found sketching buddies. We've got a group sketching session planned for Saturday morning but I fear it's going to be too crowded for sketching. 

Nicolas was dressed as a 17th Century peasant as he was part of the parade but the most fun part of Fete de Nouvelle France is that LOTS of people dress in 17th Century clothes. There are indians, trappers, the gentry, the peasants, pirates, priests, etc. They roam the streets of 'lower town' for five days. Many sketchers in our group like to do people sketches and with all the costumes it was a perfect fit.

I will have a costume for next year - it looks like lots of fun. I'm just looking for 17th Century shorts and t-shirt as it's really hot and humid here in August. I don't know how people wearing coats/vests or heavy dresses manage to survive.

Larry D. Marshall, 2012
We had a couple gatherings of sketchers during this event and I managed to get to the one on Saturday. For me it was a mix of sketching, talking, and wandering around, enjoying the events. Only managed one sketch, made with my Hero 578 (fountain pen). It's nearly three times the weight of the pen I usually use, and to get thin lines I've got to hold it almost vertical and I suspect that is why some lines are not straight. So here's my crooked little house. There were lots of people walking below the sketch.  Maybe the lines in this sketch felt more crooked than normal to me because of all the people walking by and looking over my shoulder."

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A few of Yvan's images:
Yvan and a young festival participant.
Photo by Jacques Laroche, 2012
Yvan Breton, 2012 - costumed festival participants
Yvan Breton, 2012 - costumed festival participants

If you missed the festival, we'll see you there with a sketchbook in hand - same time, same place, next year.

Links to contributors:
Yvan Breton
Larry D. Marshall


  1. This looks like a great day! Fun to see the sketchers in costume :)

    1. Thanks, Marc!
      I agree, it looked like so much fun. Sadly, I personally was out of town, so have to just enjoy it vicariously through Yvan, Larry, and the others'.


      P.S. If you've ever done sketches related to Nouvelle-France here in Quebec City (costumes, buildings, etc.), you would be welcome to submit one (or more!) for inclusion in our August Theme post(http://drawntoquebec.blogspot.ca/p/monthly-sketch-themes.html).