Stefan Bleekrode is an artist that impressed me with his pure passion and patience. His amazing collection of black and white line drawings of cities throughout Europe and the US but also his persistence throughout the years of his carreer is the proof of that passion. The drawings you will see below were done in pen, ink and watercolour and mainly drawn from memory!!
Stefan Bleekrode born in 1986 in Eindhoven, Netherlands began in 1996 doing small pencil drawings of cities.
A trip to Rome and shortly thereafter to London in 2002 encouraged him to pick up painting and seriously persue a career in art. After finishing highschool in 2003 in briefly went to artschool only to drop out after three months. Later in 2004 Stefan discovered the work of Edward Hopper in London which influenced his painted work substantially.
Between 2005-2008 prolonged stays in the UK and trips to America continued to influence his paintings, while the drawings became smaller in size and only occasionally he would do a bigger piece. By now Stefan was working in ink and occasionally he would experiment with shadows but didn’t think much of it. To support himself he worked in various jobs during the day and painted in the evening, this would last ’till 2012.
In late 2009 the drawings first went on display in an exhibition but only the paintings next to them sold so he continued to focus on painting until he was invited to exhibit a large number of drawings in Berne, Switzerland in 2012. This show sold out in two days and turned Stefan’s outlook towards the drawings around. Enthousiastically Stefan picked up his pen and began working on a great number of new pieces, actively working on his perspective and linework. By now painting was becoming something on the side and drawing had come first place. Since 2014 he’s working with one of Holland’s top gallerists which led various succesful shows in Holland with just drawings.
Currently Stefan is working on several big drawings at the same time. This includes a major drawing of New York, putting together all his impressions the same way he did with Paris when he was ten.
Stefan Bleekrode’s website: http://stefanbleekrode.exto.org
Bern & the Alps
Stefan Bleekrode’s drawings.
I’ve been drawing already since the age of ten, a short visit to Paris ignited the urge to capture and remember the cities and buildings which fascinated me.
After an attempt to draw Paris, which didn’t wholly work out I began creating my own imaginary cities on paper, as a substitute for the passion of travelling that has been with me as long as I can remember.
Initially these drawings were done in pencil. At home, I put the villages and cities I’d seen on holidays in these drawings and added a good deal of my own imgination. Over the years, I’ve enhanced my technical abilities and increased the amount of detail in my city drawings or cityscapes as I call them.
I basically only draw what inetersts me or things I find beautiful. Composition, perspective and architectural design are the most important motives behind the choice of subject matter. Above all I like to capture the spirit of certain places or celebrate the architecture and ingenuity of great cities. This can be modern or medieval, so long as it interests me.
I mainly work in the Netherlands but I often travel to various places in Europe and occasionally to the United States in search of inspiration.
Town on Amalfi coast
City by the Med
City by the Sea