13TH & CARY, RICHMOND

Downtown Richmond is strikingy different from anyplace in Hampton Roads. Craven civic reapportionment during the segregation wars forever doomed us to fragmentation, and the idea of a strong urban center growing from a rich historical base vanished. This is admittedly a simplistic, unfair, non-nuanced judgment typical of bloggers, and I'm proud of it. Richmond has many faults, including an award-winning murder rate, and its western edge is a horrific example of suburban capitalism run amok. But from a sketching point of view, the core city is rich in subject matter. The only times I've gone there in the last few years were to see, and say goodbye to, my good friend Cindy Woods. I would love to come back and visit the people and places she drew so well.