Ink and watercolor wash People Places Sketchbook Pages

Sketching at Bridges Rock Gym

Sunflowers by Tin Roof Yoga, ink & watercolor
Sunflowers by Tin Roof Yoga, ink & watercolor

For last Tuesday night’s sketchcrawl, we went to Bridges Rock Gym to sketch people climbing on the rock structures and practicing “slack lining” (like tight-rope walking). When I arrived I sketched these sunflowers growing on a little garden plot besides Tin  Roof Yoga, attached to the gym. The Assistant Manager, Jeffie, told me that the sunflowers were “volunteers” that sprouted up in the dirt they obtained for the plot by Annie’s Annuals.

Climbers at Bridges Rock Gym, ink and watercolor
Climbers at Bridges Rock Gym, ink and watercolor

Since I was hungry and we were sketching from the cafe on the loft’s balcony I enjoyed a plate of homemade hummos, veges and pita bread, and sketched the salt shaker while I waited for my food. The cafe was offering free samples of their homemade ginger cookies — best I’ve had! Then I tried to draw the moving targets of people climbing rocks (above).

Cathy worked quickly and did a great job capturing so much of the movement and action of the climbers and the balance of the slackline (like a tightrope only springy) walkers. Here are two of Cathy’s sketches:

Rock Gym Climbers by Cathy McAullife
Rock Gym Climbers by Cathy McAuliffe
Climbers and Slackliners by Cathy McAuliffe
Climbers and Slackliners by Cathy McAuliffe

If you have a chance to visit the gym, be sure to look at their amazing photobook of the gym’s owner slacklining high atop peaks in Yosemite, from tree to tree in the Berkeley hills, and several floors above a Polish shopping mall. Visiting the gym made me wish I wasn’t scared of heights — it’s such a beautiful place, with great amenities and very friendly staff. Everyone is welcomed and the night we there we saw absolute beginners, a small group of children, and some very advanced climbers with amazing muscles.

When it was time to go, I was just starting to get the hang (no pun intended) of how to approach sketching the climbers, noticing that as they climbed or balanced on the rope, the movements were in patterns that kept repeating so it was just a matter of waiting a couple seconds and they’d be back in that frog-like position, for example. I’ll come back to sketch again and to try out their yoga studio.

2 replies on “Sketching at Bridges Rock Gym”

your blog is unique.thank you for teaching us the way to learn to see the world around us.You are a great artist dear Jana


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