Airport drawings

I’m an anxious traveller so I always arrive at the airport way too early. When I was flying to Amsterdam this summer I got to draw an airplane, in detail, because I had about three hours to kill.

Airplanes are surprisingly hard to draw, which is probably why I don’t draw them often. I think I’ve tried and given up in the past, but I persevered with this one. And did lots of pencil drawing and erasing before I added any ink. It’s the nose of the plane that’s the hardest. And getting the wingspan right. And figuring out the foreshortening of the body of the aircraft. Well, all of it I guess.

I also like to draw people in the airport because as it turns out, they are easier than airplanes. I often use my iPad for this. On my way home from Amsterdam I caught a guy enjoying his last Heineken before getting on the plane.

I also had some time in Seattle to draw a guy who was enjoying a very good nap on the airport carpet. He was in a deep sleep when the alarm on his phone went off and he groggily shook himself awake, straightened out his rumpled shirt and trudged off to catch his flight.

28 Comments on “Airport drawings”

  1. Gerry Draper says:

    I just love that you are comfortable drawing wherever you are. I get too self-conscious!


    • I got over that years ago. Now if someone sees me drawing them, I just show them the drawing and they usually just smile. Not sure, though, if the carpet sleeper would have appreciated this portrait!


  2. TonyU says:

    Spooky similarity between the guy on the floor and the aircraft!


  3. Wiafe Ababio says:

    Like a view from a mountain top, is amazing. 👍 Sent from Mail for Windows 10


  4. karim waked says:

    Have a wonderful time in Italy loveboyds!




  5. wispyartist says:

    I love your drawings. I know foreshortening can be a pain to pull off but you certainly do it well!


  6. Donna says:

    I just loved this——capturing the ordinary and the extraordinary! Drawing certain things can be a challenge. I’d be working on the lane forever


  7. Barbara Lindsey says:

    Amazing. Love the people doing what people do in airports. The plane is something I would probably (read definitely) not take on. Yours is fab’.


  8. Agnès Bolley-Vittot says:

    Hi Shari, your airplane came out quite fine! what size is your IPAD ? is it a size you recommend for sketching?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Judy Sopher says:

    Even your sketches have so much character. And speaking of character, some people lose all sense of pride at airports. I once heard a funny discussion about at what age one shouldn’t sleep on airport floors. (There was no conclusion) And my last comment–carpet on an airport floor? Wow!


  10. I love the drawing of the aircraft, Shari. There are just some things – bicycles, aircraft, horses – that I would never attempt. Seeing how you handled the ‘plane gives me fresh hope!


  11. Lynn Holbein says:

    OMG, Shari, I love these! I particularly love it when people show how they use “waiting time,” using their time to be creative instead of impatient or annoyed. You nailed them, as always!


  12. joantav says:

    Wonderful sketch of the plane at the gate. I agree that they are hard to draw, especially if you can see a lot of the windows. Then there is all that “airport stuff” that I can never figure out. lol Love the sketch of the sleeping guy and the story about his alarm.


  13. All terrific drawings and compositions — each with it’s own character.


  14. Nice drawings, I really like your tired people which is always my experience with travel. One of our Neighbours actually works at the Airport in Dorval. He drives one of the vehicles that take people out to the planes. A lot of people in Cornwall work in Montreal!


  15. Bob Glazauskis says:

    I guess I am the opposite Shari as I have been working in aircraft maintenance with United for over 30 years and almost 8 years in naval aviation prior to that. My issues are
    having a limited amount of time while at work at O’hare to sketch. So my sketches tend to be pretty loose and free flowing and done quickly with color being added later time if any. I post a lot of my sketches on the usk chicago page and am a active member with them. I kind of have following within the group with my airport sketches. It most certainly is a challenge with the foreshortening even at ground level. Then add wing and winglet angles and the tail surfaces and other odd looking equipment moving around them or pulled up to them! I will try to start posting them more to the urban sketchers group timeless ne

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Jan says:

    I love your drawing of the airplane. And it did my heart good to hear you say people are easier to draw than airplanes. I’ve been challenging myself to draw airplanes and then reward myself by drawing a sleeping passenger, never one on the floor – yet. LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

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