Corner of sixth
Urban sketching really connects you to your surroundings in a way that studio painting does not. I haven’t been out in my car to paint for a while (extreme cold weather, lots of snow, holidays, etc.) but drawing this morning reminded of what I like best about being out there, even if it is from the confines of a vehicle. As I painted, it became clear that someone inside the convenience store was watching me. First I could see a silhouette in the window, then the door opened a crack and closed. This happened several times until the man ventured out to the stoop for a smoke. He tried not to stare at me but when I finally lifted up my sketch to show him, a connection was made. He smiled and crossed the street to see it. I guess Montreal is still a fairly safe place because I rolled down my window to talk to him, something that I might have been reluctant to do before I started sketching outdoors. We had a little chat about what I was doing, where else I had sketched, and he had a look through the book. Once his curiosity was satisfied it was pretty much as before — I finished my sketch and he went back to dépanneur business.