Text Box: A Corner of Paris

A year ago the first chapter of neilink featured a drawing of Shakespeare & Company in Paris. That was the second drawing of a set. This monthís drawing is the first in the set which was done nine years earlier. This scene is around the corner from the other drawing at the end of the block to the left of the Rue de Bucherie, I think itís at the end of Rue Julien Le Pauvre on Rue Galande.

I loved the buildings and the Friterie but the building on the left was boring and the middle was just tables for the Friterie. I decided to replace the things I didnít like on the ground floor. I made up the Boulangerie but I think itís pretty representative of the style. The Crepe shop was actually a couple of blocks away across Blvd. Ste. Michelle. It was more of a hole in the wall so I gave it a door and a big open window. 

Iím always amazed by the way buildings like these fit together in Paris. I assume the two little structures came first and then the larger ones were built around them but why are there no windows above them?

Quite often I collect people while doing a drawing. I usually bring a little folding seat and take a long time drawing so people walk by a number of times in the days Iím working. People like to look and comment on how itís going. This used to make me uncomfortable until I started keeping the drawing in a kind of partially finished state so there was always something to see. I keep working on one section until itís done and try not to jump all over the paper. Eventually I get to the point where Iím astonished to see that it really is done. 

This one was strange because I did it from the top down. I donít think anyone spoke to me until I was doing the shops that werenít really there. 

I donít really speak French but I know when Iím being complemented so thatís good. In this case people started asking me long questions seemingly about why I was drawing something that wasnít there. I eventually started doing long explanations in English which seemed to do the trick, at least for me.

In retrospect I think the Creperie was based as much on a stand that used to be on St. Marks Place in the East Village in New York as it was on anything. 

This is one of my favorite drawings. I have a 33Ē by 42Ē copy in multiple frames over the fireplace in my apartment.

†Close Ups

Text Box: My Failed Cartoon Career

All material copyright 2016 Neil Borrell


Text Box: Email   neil@borrellcompany.com