I traveled with seven of my sketching buddies from home, and we spent the first few days of our Italy adventure in Cinque Terre. Click here and here to read about our time there. But I didn't wait until we were on Italian soil to begin my travel journal. I wanted this sketchbook to be about the whole experience, so on the flight over to Italy, I penciled in the lettering for a travel quote on the first page and did a rough sketch of a plane flying over the Atlantic.
|10" x 7", ink & watercolor, Handbook Field Watercolor Journal|
There was no way I could do the watercolor washes in the cramped confines of my airline seat, so I saved that for later. Then I turned the page and started on this two-page spread showing the joys of travel...
|Click to enlarge|
I knew it was going to be a l-o-n-g day as I made my way from home in Prosperity, PA, to Cinque Terre, Italy, so I decided to document it all - the early wake-up, the car ride, meeting my friends, waiting in lines at various airports, and riding in planes, shuttle buses and vans.
The lines for security and customs at JFK and in Rome seemed endless...
but we eventually arrived in Pisa...
We had a private tour of the Piazza dei Miracoli, where the Leaning Tower stands (or leans)...
and finally made it to Manarola in Cinque Terre... 27 hours after leaving home!
Travel is definitely not for sissies! It's exhausting and frustrating and can seem endless at times, but it's easier to handle when you're with friends, and, in the end, it's worth every grueling minute of it just to be in ITALY!
|It was worth it, to see this!|
The first day we were there, I did a sketch of the view from my room at our B&B, Affittacamere San Giorgio...
I had stayed there on my first trip to Italy in 2013, and you just can't beat its location, close to the train station in the little town of Manarola. The rooms are spacious and modern, and we were right in the heart of the village.
|Our B&B was on the upper floors of this beautiful historic building|
Manarola suits me, because it's a little quieter than some of the bigger towns in the Cinque Terre, like Monterosso and Vernazza. It's so quiet at night that you feel like you're one of the natives, strolling through darkened streets on your way back from dinner.
|View from my room|
But during the day, the shops and restaurants are open, the ferry boats are running, and there's plenty to see and do (like sketching!)
This tiny cottage was so weird and interesting that I just had to sit and sketch it. It looked like a hobbit house, with its round windows, log posts and arches, whimsical chimney pot complete with metal flag, and flowers all around. So cool!
Italy is filled with unique scenes like this. Just go for a stroll, open your eyes, and you're bound to see something interesting.
Watch for more sketches from Italy coming up soon!