Familiar corner

One of the things I love best about urban sketching is getting to tell the stories of the people or places I sketch. There’s not much of that happening these days, and I miss it. But today I have a story from my own neighbourhood. I have sketched the west side of the Pioneer Bar building in Pointe-Claire Village many, many times. You can see it on the right side of the sketches here and here and here. And there are probably many more sketches of it in my archives.

My story today is that when I arrived to sketch at my usual spot, the Pioneer was gone. It’s been scheduled for demolition for years, but there was an ongoing controversy because heritage groups for the city of Pointe-Claire were against the construction of condos and commercial properties being built in its place, and fought (and lost) to prevent its demolition. I have to admit the building was a bit of an eyesore, which you will see when you click on the link to the newspaper article, but I will miss the yellow stucco side wall, the big propane tanks and black metal fire escapes that provided me with so much opportunity for brush calligraphy. Au revoir Le Pionnier!

9 Comments on “Familiar corner”

  1. Gerry says:

    Thanks, Shari. I love the fact that you DO tell the stories of your paintings. That makes them so special. I also love that you often show us that ordinary Objects around the house or whatever are great things to paint. Thanks for the inspiration!


    • Gerry, these days there is nothing but the same old, same old to sketch but I try to make it new by using different materials (like gouache) or painting at different times of day. Thanks so much for writing!


  2. It is so interesting to see the same location sketched again over time. A good reminder not think because you sketched it once you cannot go back and sketch it again. It looks like you did today’s sketch in gouache. We have so much development in our area. It is disappointing to history vanish.


    • Carmel, I go back go the same places again and again. Especially if I can find parking in winter. That is one of the spots I like. Yes, today’s sketch is in gouache on Stillman & Birn toned paper. Are you sketching the places that are disappearing due to new developments? I can’t believe how many places I have sketched in the past few years that are gone now.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Shari, yes I have been sketching the beach houses that are being sold so a high rise can go in. We counted 11 cranes building high rise buildings along the coastline from our boat.


  3. Bernadette says:

    This one is a beauty…but then, they all are! It is so simply stated, not overworked. It takes a talented eye to see the shape and shades within. Very, very nice!

    I like to see your use of gouache.I’ve never tried it.. I wonder how differently it responds in comparison to acrylics.


  4. Judy Sopher says:

    This is so interesting.A quote from the old Doris Day series-“Nothing stays the same.” And you still make a fine painting of this site. I love the reds that give color to a drab setting. Maybe its my age, but there is a sort of energy in old neighborhoods and old places.


    • I agree Judy. I keep going back to this area because it has a sense of history, and some really old building. That is unusual to find in the suburbs but I’m lucky to have it so close to home.


  5. One of the fun things about sketching the same location several times is seeing the changes that happen. I never like when something disappears totally. Those changes are too drastic for me. Nice sketch of the area! It will be interesting to see what gets built there.


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