Friday, November 29, 2013

Sketching the NY Theatre District - November 23, 2013

The Saint James Theatre
In addition to being the densest concentration of NYC Theatres, West 44th Street would also be the ideal spot for a wind turbine to harness the power of the wind coming in off the Hudson River.  It was cold on Saturday but the wind made it  nearly intolerable.  As I sketched people watched and chatted and, as often happens when Urban Sketching, the act of sketching in public became part of someone else's experience of the city that day.

The Shubert Theatre

I moved up the block hoping the wind would be less strong.  Shubert Theatre is located at a mid-block cut through that connects 44th and 45th Streets - known as Shubert's Alley.  If anything, that alley concentrates the wind patterns and gives each blast a chance to turn around and have another shot at you.

A great location, but it was being ruined by the cold and the wind.  Svetlana made a generous and brilliant suggestion.  She invited us to sketch from her office, located a few blocks away with beautiful aerial views of Times Square.

One World Trade Center
Looking down Broadway featured a distant view of the One World Trade Center - also known as the Freedom Tower.

The Water Towers
New York is one the cities that uses large water tanks on top of buildings to distribute water to the offices and apartments.  NYC pressure get's the water up to the wooden storage tanks and gravity feeds the water down to the occupants of each building.  Walking in the streets you catch a glimpse of these wooden structures, but once you're up high, looking down, they're everywhere.

42nd Street Looking East from Times Square
The view looking down at Times Square is a scramble of bright yellow taxis, pedestrians surging everywhere and disappearing perspective lines.


  1. Mark, great sketches!!! I didn't realize you got to sketch more than one theatre before I wonder you were frozen. You did a lot at Svetlana's office building. I really like the one with the view of the World Trade just sings! Hope everything went well after you left us.

  2. Really nice color choices, Mark. I started noticing recently that your color palette is becoming recognizably yours.

  3. Boy I sure was wrapped up in myself that day and didn't realize how many sketches you were doing. And ditto Svetlana re your palette - nicely vibrant and "alive". I love the plaid on the side of the third sketch - it describes so much. Brilliant.