Plein-air pen and wash on paper

Coherent Structures


Shq’apthut – A Gathering Place – on the campus of the Vancouver Island University (VIU) is the home providing Services for Aboriginal Students.

This site  has a nice looking building with a contemporary  design and is marked with three totem poles; the last one was recently completed and unveiled.  The wood carver’s temporary  shelter is still there. 

I stopped here again today to take a break from cycling  uphill to where the VIU is located, and to make a sketch.

The design of the large (ASTEC) building in the distance incorporates the exposed air plenums in the architectural treatment of the building’s exterior.

VIU Campus

VIU Campus Building 180

The poles in the foreground  and the tubes wrapping the building in the background make for a coherent sketching set-up. It also reflects the cultural diversity encountered on this campus; Mr. Trump’s election ideology would not find much support here.

I tried to draw these totems as a standalone subject on previous visits and ran into problems with the complexity of these magnificent sculptures. In this sketch they are shown somewhat schematic,  so you can get away with it because a significant amount of detail is left out.

Author: John Hofman

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2 thoughts on “Coherent Structures

  1. Interesting composition. The juxtaposition of poles and pipes draws the eye.

  2. I love this sketch of architecture that represents old and new. The color on the totem poles is very effective.

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