Monday, October 9, 2017

New Orleans in the Storm

In the summer of 2003 I did a long road trip through the states of the Deep South: Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama,Georgia, and South and North Carolina. I wasn't trying to prove any political point, I was just curious about a part of my country that I had never visited before. I had a lot of fun looking at the landscape, eating local food, and drawing a lot of pictures. I used the same ink-and-colored pencil technique I would later use for my winery drawings. 

New Orleans was one of my important destinations but what I didn't know, since I was not connected to Internet and not watching TV, was that a tropical storm named "Bill" was also about to visit New Orleans. Just after I landed in New Orleans the rains came. I didn't mind the deluge, and toured the town anyway. I had a late lunch at a restaurant in the French Quarter called "Pere Antoine's" (not the famous "Antoine's") where I had a mediocre submarine sandwich and drew this picture of the street under the pouring rain. I tried to suggest the torrent through vertical pencil strokes. I was sitting at a table under a sidewalk porch roof and the restaurant staff were agitating me to move back into the restaurant so they could close up the outside panels against the wind and rain. I finally complied once I had hurriedly finished my drawing. There were some flooded areas from this storm and I now call it the "rehearsal for Katrina." I wonder if I'll ever get back there.

Tech pen black and brown inks with colored pencil, 6 1/2" x 9 1/2", June 30, 2003. Click for larger view. I'm sure I've published this picture somewhere online but if I don't remember where, you probably don't either.

1 comment:

Texchanchan said...

I visited New Orleans in September 2005, immediately post-Katrina when it was still deserted. Spooky as he**. Empty streets with Hum-Vees at the intersections. I have a couple of pictures, one I took at the time, and one from Google Street View of the same street. Like night and day.