[by Mario Luz, Christchurch, NZ] We had only seen it from the sky and had stopped there a few times "on transit" to New Zealand, but this time we finally went to visit Australia, I mean Victoria and New South Wales coast. We first landed in Melbourne and spent a few days enjoying this very cultural city. We saw some awesome graffiti on the streets, the narrow lanes packed with people and good food everywhere.
Brunswick St, one of our favorite streets for it's shops, street life and facades.
One great thing about this journey was to meet the Urban sketchers from Melbourne, Evelyn Yee was our contact, we met her and 2 other sketchers at the Harbour and did a sketch together on a sunny Saturday Morning, see above. From Melbourne we drove up to Sydney through the coast on a campervan, this road doesn't always get close to the sea but there are a lot of nice villages to stop and have a swim on the estuaries, lakes or beaches. Sleeping on a van was the highest moment of happiness for our daughter Eva, look at her floating on the Cuttagee river near Bermagui.
After so many beautiful landscapes it was time to reach the city again, before arriving to Sydney we tried to find out with USk Sydney if there was some sketch meeting that week and Liz Steel told us that they were actually going to meet on the Saturday in Manly. It was a great change to see this very cool place, located on the north of Sydney Harbour and met other Urban Sketchers. There are so many ways of looking and sketching a place and is good to learn and share techniques. The drawing below was made while the market was going on and people were moving towards the beach.
After visiting the "must see" places, our favorite way of seeing a city is to wander around and follow the instinct, the topography, and "the shades" on sunny days. Its always exciting to find great spaces by chance, for example the Sydney Theater company and the amazing cafe with a view to the bridge and the boats (see below) and also a Chinatown quick sketch made while Liliana was in the queue for some mechanically made Emperor Cakes. After this trip we definitely want to go back and discover other places in Australia.