I gave myself a full day in Chicago before the symposium so I could sketch and do ANYTHING I WANTED without being on anyone's timetable but my own. First stop? Navy Pier! After having brunch with a friend who conveniently works at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, she let me into their building for an exclusive view of the Ferris Wheel. This one was done with Qor watercolors and was my warm-up for the day.
Next stop? The Chicago Theatre! I walked down the Magnificent Mile until I hit the beautiful marquee. I took a bunch of photos, and am hoping to do a studio version of this. I loved the complexities of the color in the shadows, and will accept any excuse to use Vermillion.
Next I stopped by Millennium Park to cross a big one off my sketch list: The Bean! I love painting reflections, so this extra-shiny sculpture is right up my alley. Naturally, I ran into a handful of other sketchers who arrived early, with the same idea. The first sketch, I used my normal palette, and for the second, I swapped to Qor watercolors to help prep for my review (which will soon be typed up into it's own blog post!). It was super helpful to paint the same thing in the same conditions, back to back (though obviously in a slightly different way) to get a feel for the differences.
After I grabbed a bite to eat, the sun was starting to get low in the sky and I headed over to Buckingham Fountain. This one was a challenge, because not only was the light changing, but the fountain changed how much water it was spraying and then the architectural lighting on the fountain turned on.
Last but not least, I wrapped up the day with a quick nocturne from the park. I didn't quite get it as dark as I wanted, but it was a good warm-up for nocturnes on following days!