In the extreme

This is a bit of a messy sketch but I have a good excuse. The daytime temperature in Montreal today is -25°C. That means that inside my car it’s not much warmer. There’s no way to be precise when your hands are frozen, your feet feel like blocks of ice and the paint on the paper never dries, even with the heater fan turned on full power. Most of Canada is under this Arctic air mass, and some provinces are getting blasted with a snowstorm too, so I am grateful that the sun is out and I have some good shadows to work with.


32 Comments on “In the extreme”

  1. said-simply says:

    A lovely, very appealing illustration.

  2. sue sladen says:

    I wish my warm fingers worked as well as your frozen ones.


  3. Myra says:

    Wonderful and thank you for always sketching; even in sub zero temperatures!! .

  4. Tom Jump says:


    WoW -25 even with sunshine… what dedication! Great as always!
    Thanks, Tom

  5. I admire your determination, Sheri! This really captures the clarity and sharpness of the winter light and cold.

  6. Alison says:

    Well, I guess sketching n these conditions is one way to keep things loose and spontaneous. Great sketch! Beautifully observed scene.

  7. Beth McGale says:

    This sketch is so wonderful! Do you just sketch in the car and then come home to add the watercolour? or…. Do you add the watercolour right there in your car? I think it is great that you get out even in this rotten weather… it’s very cold in Alberta too.

    You inspire me…

  8. Lee Kline says:

    We are all in awe of your dedication and skill. This is interesting for how it shows so clearly your pencil beneath. Thanks and Happy New Year!

  9. Lynne says:

    I always love all of your sketches but this one really appeals to me with it’s slightly jagged, quirky feel. You should draw half-frozen more often 🙂

  10. Connie Renaud says:

    I love it. I feel inspired every time you post a sketch. Thank you.

  11. This might be one of my all time favorites of yours. I guess I love what you call ‘messy’.

  12. Susan says:

    Wish my messes looked like this!!!

  13. Mary says:

    Hi Shari, Haven’t been online for a month and missed seeing your wonderful work.
    Happy New Year and what a way to usher in 2014 in this brutal cold! Love this little yellow cottage which radiates a cozy warmth in spite of these temps 🙂 How did you still maintain
    a beautiful looseness using frozen fingers ? You’re amazing and can’t wait to see you
    later this month 🙂

  14. monbaum says:

    No excuses! Wow. I love all of the contrasts. It’s beautiful!

    And here I am wondering whether it will be too uncomfortable at +6° C sans car to go for a sketch.

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