shoes in the sky

3rd and University, Davis
Springtime in Davis. Pink blossom on trees. Shoes on telegraph wires – huh? The last time I sketched this view (see below) you’ll notice there was just the one pair of shoes. I’d be more impressed if they managed to get a single solitary shoe up there. Eventually they’ll bring the line down, I imagine. What are they for, I wonder? One common explanation is that this marks the boundary between where gangs sell drugs, which is possible. Or maybe this signifies the territories of door-to-door preachers? They must be all the lost soles.

This was sketched over a couple of lunchtimes in the landscape-format Stillman and Birn ‘alpha’ sketchbook, which is a delight to draw in (and it takes a watercolour wash well), though I don’t imagine I’ll do many two-page panoramas, as that middle ridge doesn’t lay very flat, at least not in this part of the book. Still at least it is in my favoured landscape format. Many more sketches to come in this one.

Below is the same scene from October 2011…

3rd and University

4 thoughts on “shoes in the sky

  1. Neil Ruud says:

    There’s a tradition for students in Davis to throw their shows up on the wire when they leave town- ideally, the shoes they’ve worn the most in Davis.

    Also, you can see my windows in the house on the right!

  2. Alessandro Melillo says:

    It’s actually a worldwide habit. In many places it’s a ritual associated with the trespass of adult age or with the first time one makes love. You see those hung shoes here in Europe as well.

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