Road trip in California: Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego and Los Angeles

dessin de San Bernardino
San Manuel Stadium, San Bernardino, California, ink drawing on paper

First drawings of a project that I have had in mind for a few weeks. In order to prepare for the next vacation in the United States and to take a road trip in California, we are scouring many potential destinations on the West Coast of the United States. The choice of places to visit is difficult to determine, we will have to decide which places to choose. Based on this observation, we take our time to study which would be the cities, sites, national monuments in which to go.

Dessin à l'encre de San Diego en Californie
San Diego beach, California, ink drawing on paper

As naturally it is not possible to go on an adventure without my painting equipment, my current approach is to actively spot many Californian spots. It allows me to roughen up a bit the sites that will more or less catch my attention, to create a library of places that I would be more likely to stop to draw. This investigative work is quite exciting, because I can thus project myself into this beautiful project, and experience a virtual road trip before making it a reality. Although I prefer to paint from nature in general, this research allows me to make sketchbooks in advance and is a source of inspiration for the future.

dessin à l'encre de Sacramento, Californie
Sacramento, California, drawing on paper

My active collaboration with the magazine France Amerique gives me many opportunities to illustrate articles on French culture established in the United States. This time the exercise is a little different: it allows me, the Frenchy, to discover a deeper, more confidential America. Indeed, we will inevitably go to see the must-see places in the US, but the desire is to put yourself in the life of the locals and also see everyday places. Besides San Francisco and Los Angeles, what about cities like Sacramento, San Bernardino, Palm Springs or Monterey? Places less familiar to us Europeans, but none the less intriguing.

Road trip in California: Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego and Los Angeles
Los Angeles, California, ink drawing on paper

To make this series of travel sketches that just begs to be enriched, I opted for pen drawing. As a magazine illustrator, I have several work tools that I use depending on the mood. It’s a tool that I love most of all: the hard, dry point allows you to scribble on paper in a vivid way, like graphic writing. In addition, it provides great freedom in the choice of ink colors. So far I’ve gone in the sepia tone, but I can’t wait to use other colors to give this collection a bit of rhythm, and to have a look that better matches each of the destinations.

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