These are the last; there will be no more

sketches of people at the dinerOn offer today: some marker and pen sketches of folks from the last Friday night at Hope & Anchor. Officially closed as of Sunday, and as I understand they had a sort of second line jazz funeral for the beloved diner and karaoke joint of Red Hook.. It’s a place I’ll sorely miss; another casualty of the sweeping change that’s been a kind of secondary storm in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
pencil sketch of people at the diner

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Jolly sketches of karaoke time at the diner

drawing of someone singing karakeSpent some time in Red Hook over the weekend; went to say goodbye to that institution of a watering hole Bait & Tackle, followed by a visit into Sunny’s (where yesterday’s photos originated), and finally dinner and some time with friends who sing at Hope & Anchor, also soon to be no more.

This is a city that changes constantly, it’s true. But there’s something altogether too fast about it when three places at the heart of a small community like the Hook all disappear in short order (the third will be Ice House; not sure when). It’s going to irrevocably change the fabric of that area, and for the worse, I’ve no doubts. Especially judging from the new bits of residential real estate that’ve been popping up.

Development, left unchecked, will be the undoing of any kind of character or authentic qualities this town has left.

ink drawing of someone singing karaoke

Everything pales as it recedes

Here is a fox. This is a study or start of the character design process. He will appear in the animated short I’ve undertaken to create. I’ve still not done any story boards, nor have I a story set in my mind, but I do tend to get ahead of myself with these things.

Below are some scratchy starts of other potential characters; deer, and the horses (who shall be background characters, seen off in the distance where the farm is). I’m beginning to have grasp what a lot of work this will require, creating the whole thing of layered pencil drawings! But jolly fun.

At the bottom you’ll see two of the six sets of trees that so far comprise my introductory forest scene; dark trees are foreground, and everything pales as it recedes.

pencil sketches of deerpencil sketches of horsespencil drawings of trees

Within an hour of waking, the sun has gladdened the windowpanes

ink sketch of a fence and field, trees in the distance

I stayed home last night; missed several parties, missed toasting with friends who I’ve not seen enough of. A head cold has been slinking ‘round the door for a few days (probably a few weeks), and by Midnight it’d overtaken me. I didn’t have any the past two winters, but I’ve been burning candles at both ends lately, so I can’t be too surprised or upset.

Despite feeling poorly, it’s not a bad thing to cross the threshold of a new year quietly and in solitude. I did this little drawing to mark the changing of the guard. (I added the snow on a whim, though clearly those aren’t winter trees, all clad in leaves.)

I’d hoped for a cold-bright wander on New Year’s Day, but that’ll have to wait for better health. Glad tidings, with a few sniffles! I’ll see what I can make of it. More drawing, whether for me or my freelance project, will make a fine start of things for 2018.

The day following the feast was sunny and mild

The day following the feast was sunny and mild, inviting of a long wander. Following lunch in a sunny local, we embarked on a meandering walk that included many stops along the way in a handful of neighborhoods.

Eventually we found ourselves again at the harbor, staring out at moon-glittered water in the early dark. We breathed in the salt smell of that black and brackish channel where the sea and river meet; entrance and exit of the city where  boats are welcomed by la dame verte.

The carving knife has been sharpened on the whetstone

drawing of a turkey for dinner

And the steaming bird, fresh from the oven, rested on the sideboard, waiting to be carved for the feast of giving thanks.

The kids love to karaoke

On a Friday night in Red Hook, a delightful reunion of friends over a swell dinner and lots of singing. (I don’t sing at karaoke, but I sure love listening and drawing.)