Big Draw: Old Railway Station

Eric Ngan organised The Big Draw Meet-Up in Auckland’s old Railway Station for this, the last Saturday of June. I trained into the new train station at Britomart and walked the short few minutes around the corner to the old train station on Te Taou Crescent.

The forecast this weekend was in keeping with the season, and as I emerged from the underground train station I saw it wasn’t just raining, it was *chucking* it down. With luck though, the wind wasn’t too bad and the walk to the venue was rather pleasant - you know - for a rainy, Winter’s day.

We had a pretty good turnout to the Meet-up with a number of new faces. The old station has been turned into private apartments, but we were allowed into the cavernous entrance so we could still draw while the weather did it’s own thing outside.

I came to this Big Draw with a very paired down set of tools. In fact, if I couldn’t carry my equipment in my coat pockets, I left it behind. One thing with us watercolourists though, we need water to paint with and generally take sealed jars of water, but this time I decided to use a new tool: the water brush. These brushes have a soft plastic barrel that holds the water and with a gentle squeeze, the water flows out through the brussels of the brush.

It was a revelation to use. I’ve known about these brushes for years but never tried them. Now I’m wondering if I’ll ever go back to traditional brushes; certainly not when out-in-the-field anyway.

The best thing about these water brushes for me was that I didn’t lay down as much paint on the page. It’s something that annoys me about my technique and it was delightful to be able to brush the delicate washes of colour onto my drawing.

It was so well worth braving the weather and making the effort to transport myself to the Meet-up today - as it always is. I was reminded, yet again, that making the effort is always worth it - for the drawing, and for the group.

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