Stephanie Bower

Stephanie Bower | Architectural Illustration: | Sketching Workshops: | Sketches: on Instagram at @stephanieabower & | Urban Sketchers Blog Correspondent | Signature member of the Northwest Watercolor Society

Friday, February 16, 2018

What I Learned About Sketching on a Trip to India, # 3

Working large, this sketch is 20" wide, but I kept things simple. These are the giant boulders at Hampi,
looking downon the temples. See the people on the left? That's how HUGE these rocks are!

3. Know when to work large or small.

Working on a small sketch is much faster when pressed for time--you don't have to fill the page AND you can get away with showing less detail. 

I always tell people new to sketching to work small...don't expect to fill a huge piece of paper right off the bat. At the beginning of my trip, I sketched small, and once I got the hang of it, I naturally gravitated to the large Fluid watercolor paper, which was great for capturing architectural scenes.

A hybrid of Hindu and Christian architecture in Goa.
By dividing up the pages in my sketchbook, I could easily work large or small as needed, 
which was 
much faster than filling a whole page. Plus, I get a nice sequence of sketches across the spread. 
This is in my Pentalic AquaJournal, 7"x10". Great sketchbook!

This is one of my large sketches, sitting in my lap. It's the Fluid Watercolor block, 8"x16". I used this paper for toward the end of the trip for sweeping architectural views. This is Cave 16 at Ellora. Seeing these incredible Buddhist caves, all carved out of one piece of stone, is worth a trip to India!!! This was easily my favorite place in the 3.5 weeks.

It is truly one of the wonders of the world!!!


  1. wonderful sketch ! I visited there forty or so years ago -- your paintings are urging me to pull up my pics of Ella and Ajantha and do a late late travel sketch diary ;)

  2. Nice post. It is really interesting. Thanks for sharing the post!
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