Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Finding Inspiration in the Kitchen

I got a new square sketchbook and I think it's going to be an ABC sketchbook of fruit and vegetables, like bok choy....

and colorful radishes...

This next inspiration didn't really come from my kitchen. It came from Tommy Kane who painted a cup collection. You should check out his blog.

Now I feel the urge for a cup of tea.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


I'm planning to join a large group of Urban Sketchers for workshops this summer. I realized last time that I did this, I needed to pick up the pace in order to keep up with most of the group. This week, for training, I decided to try some quick and loose sketches.My first attempts at people were pretty awkward.

Then I tried to look quickly and remember as much as I could. It was fun and it got easier as I did more.
Luckily, it was a gorgeous day and everyone seemed to want to be outside. I sketched people eating and relaxing in Director Square. Then I sketched people walking by in the park blocks. I guess, I should say that I sketched "parts of people" since my visual memory isn't often strong enough to capture the whole person before they move out of range.

 Later, in our neighborhood park, I sketched sunbathers and walkers, and local flora and fauna.

The best thing about sketching people outside in the sun (besides being in the sun myself), is that when I wear my sunglasses for sketching, it's not as apparent that I'm looking at my subjects.

Here are a couple of quick and loose lilac sketches.

I wish I could send the wonderful fragrance along with the sketches.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Portland Streetcorner

Yesterday, it was chilly and rainy so I was sketching from inside the Starbucks across from Powell's.

Powell's from the corner of NW 11th and NW Couch

When a car pulled away, a much more human story was revealed...

Homeless Man and Dog under Plastic, Streetroots Seller

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Voodoo and Beyond

I don't have any terrific sketches today, but in the spirit of sharing with my fellow urban sketchers, here they are.
This first one was done at Voodoo Doughnuts Too, looking past the sketchers to the parking lot beyond. (My apologies for the poor likenesses.) I like how one of the bushes is pruned and decorated to look like the Voodoo Doughnut doll

It was chilly today (mid 40's) and I didn't finish my sketches from the parking lot before we decided to head to a nearby coffee and motorcycle shop See See Motorcycles and Coffee, for warmth. What a great place this was!  Besides the hot mugs, good coffee, and delicious pastry, there were motorcycles, helmets, good views and available tables.

Not having been on a motorcycle since my 20's,  I had no idea what I was drawing and it's likely that someone who knows motorcycles would be appalled at what I left out or distorted. This last one, I drew from looking at a reflection in the shop window. Then I turned around and drew the rest of the scene.

We didn't have a big group, but it was a very congenial one and I had a good time sketching with everyone and perusing the sketchbooks. 

After warming up at home, I went back to the doughnut shop to finish my sketches. The lines were three people thick this time and it started raining, so I drove a few blocks away and drew a firehouse from the warmth of my car. The Voodoo Doughnut shop sketches will have to wait for another, warmer day.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

More Blossoms

It was so gorgeous by the waterfront, that I went back Saturday with a couple of Urban Sketchers to sketch again. Volunteers were cleaning the rocks of the Japanese monument.

 The day was warm and as it wore on, more and more people arrived to take pictures, picnic, and play by the cherry trees. Eventually, there were so many people, I couldn't see some of the tree trunks and some of the large rocks.  Even the MAX trains seemed to slow as they were near the north end of the Steele bridge, perhaps giving the riders an extra view of all the pink blossoms.

On Sunday, I wanted to show my husband the cherry trees, so we went back and I sketched again while he read. This time I looked toward the Burnside Bridge.

And here are a few more signs of spring....