18th Century Military Topographical Drawing Workshops

18th Century Military Topographical Drawing Workshops

Lecture and Hands-on Workshop in drawing “on the spot”

The Crown Point State Historic Site is pleased to welcome back James Lancel McElhinney, Author of the Sketchbook Traveler book series for the first of three sessions capturing the seasons as summer turns to fall.

History comes alive at what was once considered “The Gibraltar of North America”. Learn the concepts and techniques behind topographical watercolor landscape painting that were practice by Thomas Davies, Thomas Pownall, and other British military officers who documented the terrain of Crown colonies along the Atlantic seaboard, and the newly-captured territories of Canada. Drawing “on the spot”, the first visions of the American landscape were by trained artists.  In the 18th century, military officers–especially engineers and artillerists–were expected to have mastered several arts practiced by civilians; notably drawing and penmanship. Following the Seven Years’ War (which lasted for eight years in America), draftsman and watercolorist Thomas Sandby was engaged to teach topographical drawing and painting to cadets at the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich. The high command believed that  apart from drawing being a necessary skill, artistic training would make keener observers of military officers in many situations, including on the battlefield.

A series of workshops at Crown Point State Historic Site in 2022 will unpack these concepts and practices in ways that anyone can learn. While the historic media used during the 18th and early 19th centuries were primarily graphite, ink, and watercolor, these will be plein-air experiences.

All media are welcome, including photography. No prior training required. Adults 18 years + are welcome. Some materials will be provided. 

To register please visit: https://needlewatcher.com/marketplace/military-topographical-drawing-crown-point-state-historic-site/ 



Crown Point State Historic Site
21 Grandview Drive, Crown Point, New York
Ph: (518) 597-3666
Visit Web Site   
Sat, 10/08/2022
1:00 PM
Series of 3 sessions: $90; one session: $35