Lisbon Again: July/August 2018

No, I’m NOT back in Lisbon. (Although I wish I was) I just have 3 days of sketches done in Lisbon at the end of July that haven’t made it to the blog yet! After a fantastic symposium in Porto, I headed back to Lisbon to sketch for a few days before heading home. Sketching with my urban sketcher buddies is a great way to wind down from teaching at the Symposium.

Lisbon is all slopes and stairways, often opening up to lovely vistas. Here is one. portugal2_view1.jpg

And not far from there, a baroque fountain at Largo do Carmo.

That was about it for the evening I arrived in Lisbon. But the next day, we headed to Belém and to Jerónimos Monastery. The elaborate decoration on the arches in the cloisters was quite a challenge to capture!

And I decided I needed to try a no-line version. This one uses watercolor and Art Graf watersoluble graphite. No points for guessing who I went sketching with.


After breaking to fortify ourselves with Belem’s famous Pastéis de Belém we sketched the Belém Tower. We must’ve been there a while, because I ended up with not one but two sketches of it.


On our way back to Lisbon, we sketched the Jerónimos Monastery again, this time from the outside.


And that was the end of an eventful day.

Next up was a day with lots of sketchers led by Ketta Linhares showing us around Lisbon.

We started our day at Elevador de Santa Justa because you just have to draw this gorgeous lift atleast once.


Just look at us all lined up to sketch it!

This was my view as I ate lunch. That’s the Ponte 25 de Abril in the distance, a bridge often compared to the Golden Gate Bridge.

These street vendors were outside the dramatically charred Igreja de Sao Domingos church. Their lively colored and patterned costumes reminded me of how much I want to visit and experience countries in Africa (a continent I have never visited) one day.

The evening ended up at Miradouro Nossa Senhora do Monte. This quick rickshaw sketch and super-quick brushpen view is all that I had the energy for.


One last half-day in Lisbon and we started pretty early at Praça do Comércio, a magnificient square in Lisbon. I was sketching with Liz and she has a penchant for complex buildings that she manages to communicate the intricacy of in quick sketches. As for me, it really takes thinking to separate the structure from the ornamentation and get the feel of it down in a sketch.portugal2_view12

This next place was probably the only place in Lisbon I found disappointing: the fish, vegetable and flower market near Time Out market.  I draw markets wherever I go and I was hoping for a more old fashioned market, this one was new and sanitized.

Ah well. The good thing is, all it takes is a quick pastel de nata to get over the disappointment. I eat them too quickly to draw them, though…

With time running out, we squeezed in a quick sketch with the Pedros.

And then a really fun one of the yellow tram with a big group of sketchers. This one is one of my favorites from the trip.

There were a lot of us eating and sketching by that tram, a perfect way to close the trip.trampeople.jpg

Well, kinda close the trip. I ended my trip with one last sketch, this time with only Uma Kelkar, Liz Steel and me sketching these guards at Museu Guarda National Republic.

portugal2_view16And then I headed back home. Even writing about leaving Lisbon makes me sad. I love that city so much.



About Suhita Shirodkar

obsessive-sketcher. graphic designer.
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7 Responses to Lisbon Again: July/August 2018

  1. Actually a question not a reply. Am I correct in guessing that your basic approach is watercolor first, ink second?


  2. Sounds a lot like my approach. I am trying to teach brand new sketchers the idea of putting blobs of color on first then the lines. My thinking is that new sketchers get home and up on trying to draw a specific lines and by seeing masses of colors in rough shape so it will be easier. We’ll see how it goes


  3. Love these! Having just returned from Lisbon, I feel like you’ve captured it brilliantly!


  4. Nice sketches of Lisbon, you really captured the essence of the moment well en plien aire.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve recently returned from Lisbon and your sketches were like a serendipity! Beautiful work ❤️


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