Thursday, July 30, 2015

Hot, Dry Summer

Portland has been having a hot and dry summer and I've been in the city for most of it.

This is looking at the PSU Farmers Market. I remember that it was hot.

I drew this from a spot of shade in Directors Square. The new building is nearing completion.

I drew the bottom of the St. John's bridge on a sketch crawl with several local sketchers. By the time I sketched this, it was already getting very toasty and most people were claiming shady patches with views of the Cathedral Park Jazz Festival. I watched our son play and then left for a cooler place.

This is a view of a dress shop that I sketched while waiting for a latte and croissant. (Our neighborhood has many temptations in it.)

I drew the cloudy sky above the Portland Art Museum. 

Here is another cloudy sky and the new building seen from the Portland Art Museum. As I drew this, a man played the piano in the courtyard. 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow' and 'A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square' was a lovely accompaniment for sketching, even as the day got warmer.

The hot weather has been hard on the flowers...

I probably shouldn't have bought a new hydrangea during the drought, but I've always wanted one of these lacecaps and I love the periwinkle color. I planted it right by the faucet.

Last weekend, we had some much needed rain. The next two sketches were made looking out from behind windows.

I hope we get some more rain, but I also hope it comes after I'm back from my river trip.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Crow Magic

Saturday, after our shopping at the PSU Farmer's Market, I sat on a shady bench and drew part of the very complex, Simon Benson House.  When I was downtown the next day, I decided to add the nearby Benson Bubbler to the facing page. As I was drawing, a crow landed on the fountain and started drinking from it. I sketched it in quickly, but then another one arrived. The first crow fed water to the second crow! I'd never seen anything like this and watched in rapt attention. Then I decided to try to get a photo, but it was too late. A large group of cyclists came and I watched the crows fly off. Luckily, I had enough of an image in my mind to add what I remembered of the second crow.

The bicyclists in the tour group parked their bikes around the fountain and got drinks. They didn't notice me and hadn't noticed the crows, but they heard various facts about Simon Benson and the Benson Bubblers. About half the information was accurate. (I was reminded of a fellow sketcher who used to make up information when he was a tour guide in another well-known city.)

It was another moment to be glad to be a sketcher who plants herself down for half an hour at a time and carefully looks at something. It's always revealing of something new and sometimes, like this day, it's just magical.

Thursday, July 9, 2015


On the Waterfront

A view from the South Waterfront

The new Tilikum Crossing from the Eastside Esplanade