Monday, 7 July 2014

A few days in the South of France - Nice

Before leaving the South of France, I spent a bit over one day in Nice. I was surprised at how much I liked the city. Before visiting it, the first thing that would come to mind when thinking of Nice was mainly beach. Nice, has beautiful architecture, though, and many great places to sketch.

My first stroll around the city led me to Place Massena. I'm not sure about all the historical aspects, for I was really just walking with no particular aim, but I think it is the biggest square in Nice. I might be wrong, though, so someone correct me if that's the case, please.

I didn't want to get lost in details (and I didn't have the patience for them either), so I applied the watercolour first and pencil later, like I first tried in Gréoux-les-Bains. I don't like the result as much, but it is definitely a good technique for me when I just want to record the impressions of a place and not all its details.

Place Massena
An old lady came to chat with me. She moved from Paris to Nice years ago and never looked back.
I went for lunch with Nathalie, the girl I met on the train from Marseille. We went to a restaurant a librarian recommended to me earlier, Restaurant du Gesu. It had typical yummy dishes from Nice. All in all a great lunch!

I aged Nathalie considerably on this portrait...
In the afternoon I walked up to the castle. I made a short stop at the cemetary, where I found a very convenient bench with a good view on this chapel. I tried to keep in mind what I learned during Sagar Fornies's workshop in Barcelona last year. I still need some practice, but I'm quite satisfied with the result, specially given the short amount of time I spent on it.

It was so nice and sunny that day!
On my way down, I sat down to sketch one of the narrow streets. I love such sights! I started with watercolour again, it seend to fit the subject. The weather got gradually greyer as I worked on this sketch, so I didn't stay there too long.

I have to saturate my colours more, I think
As the weather seemd to worsen, and I was near the museum of modern and contemporary art (MAMAC), I decided to go in and see what it had to offer. Plus the entreance was free. Que du bonus!, as they say.

I love Ben's work!
My flight only left the next day in the afternoon, so I took the time to enjoy the Promenade des Anglais in the morning. There were many people jogging, and graddually people came to sunbathe and enjoy the beach.

Promenade des Anglais
I would have loved to go in the water, even if the beach full of pebbles was not really inviting. I'm spoiled by Portugal's nice sandy beaches!

Instead, I took out my Pentel brushpen and started to quickly sketch the people there. That was a fun exercise. Will definitely do it again.

People on the beach are the same everywhere
This short escapade in Nice was very refreshing. I might go back one day, for a longer time, to see what else this beautiful city has to offer.

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