No deadlines, no expectations, just an exercise in creativity. The plan: Use our motorcycles to scout out a location where we can sit down with our sketchbooks, relax and draw. We planned to meet up with our illustrator/motorcyclist buddy, Chris, and allow our kindred artistic spirits to sketch outside the four walls of our daily gigs. Where’d we end up?
We’re lucky to enjoy our careers as graphic designers and Chris is an accomplished illustrator by trade, but today we’d go back to our younger days when we did more sketching simply for the joy of sketching.
We like to connect the dots of excursions like this via motorcycles. Art is fun enough for us right-brained folk, but using bikes for all the to-and-from trips is icing on the cake. It extends the time you’re not under a roof.
We chose a gravel lane just off of West Street in downtown Indianapolis with a wonderfully industrial view (above) of the thermal energy chilled water plant. The facility’s one-note whoosh was intensely loud, but it drowned out any aural distractions.
This ride ‘n sketch session was an exercise; an opportunity to find an impromptu location and draw it. It’s also an excuse to get out and explore on motorcycles to see where back alleys lead or what’s off the beaten path.
We concluded the gravel lane drawing drill and headed toward the “circle” in the heart of downtown Indy for some lunch. We sat and ate in the shadow of 284-foot tall Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument, a neoclassical homage to those who fought in American wars.
As for what location or subject may be next, who knows. What’s certain is, this sketching excursion primed us to plan another session of motorcycling and art. We hope this inspires you GSG readers to pack up a pencil and a sketchbook, hop on a bike and go find a scene to absorb and record. Don’t draw? Bring a good book, write a poem, play a guitar. We’re bettin’ the experience will be heightened if a motorcycle is your transportation to a creative escape.