European Sketchbook #1: Italy

Palazzo Celsi
Palazzo Celsi

Here are some sketches from the trip I took to Europe with the family in June and July. Our first stop was Venice, then we moved on to Florence, where I collected research for a book project about Renaissance architect Filippo Brunelleschi and his discovery of perspective.

David Chelsea is reading
“Godel, Escher, Bach”
by Douglas Hofstader

Baptistery
Baptistery

A lot of the drawings from Florence are of things Brunelleschian, including his death mask in the Opera Duomo Museum and the Florentine Baptistery, subject of Brunelleschi’s first perspective demonstration. I also sketched contemporary scenes, like the supermarket near our hotel and a museum guard reading manga at the Ufizzi.

Museum Guard at the Uffizi
Museum Guard at the Uffizi

The kids kept busy sketching as well; Ben spent several hours on this pencil drawing of the Neptune fountain in the Boboli Gardens, and Rebecca painted a watercolor of a Florentine peach.

Sketches from Opera Duomo
Sketches from Opera Duomo
Florence Supermarket
Florence Supermarket
Ben's Fountain
Ben's Fountain
Rebecca's Peach
Rebecca's Peach

Our time in Venice was shorter and I did fewer sketches there, but I did find time to draw the Palazzo Celsi, ancestral home of my putative relative, Doge Lorenzo Celsi. We also visited the bell tower at San Marco, where Eve noticed this sign, an apparent prohibition against sketching the bells:

This was a challenge I could not resist:

Next: Sketches from Germany