Saturday, January 25, 2020

Casa Casuarina: Versace Mansion

Orlando Urban Sketchers, Tampa Urban Sketchers and Miami Urban Sketchers teamed up to offer workshops ad demos at the 3 day Miami Beach Art Deco Weekend. My first demo was titled, Leaf Something Behind, and my plan was to sketch the Versace Mansion on one of the large circular Sea Grape leaves that can be found all around the beach front properties of South Beach.

Before the demo, I decided to sketch the mansion on good old paper to get used to it's proportions and patterns before the challenge of working on a leaf. For this weekend I brought along some gouache paints in a new palette. I immediately fell in love with the option of being able to put down pure bold opaque colors wen needed. I decided while doing this sketch that opaque white might be needed when I decided to work on Sea grape leaves. These leaves are leathery when they dry out and rather study. A tour guide had told me that they can be sent through the mail as post cards.

One of the event staff go carts was parked in front of the mansion as they needed to drop off water and other supplies to the VIP dance area behind me. All around me people were in a hurry to set up their tents to be ready for the crowds that would decent on the festival over the weekend. Rain threatened multiple times during the morning, but the showers were short lived squalls and I put the umbrella up and continued to work.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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