I was lucky enough to be able to go to Portland, OR last month and visit a conservation and restoration studio (MPF Conservation) where some historic carousel horses from the Jantzen Beach Carousel were in-house being evaluated for restoration. There were about 15 of them there. So interesting! Here are a couple of my takes of two of the horses. I penciled them there and inked them at home.
I am currently teaching a 6-week Travel Journal with Ink and Watercolor workshop. My students for this workshop are so interesting. They jumped in feet first with designing their pages and choosing what images to use together to describe a day. With composition out of the way, I can help with how to draw some of the images they’ve chosen and cover some watercolor basics. Even though I like to use ink and watercolor for my sketchbooks, making a travel journal is telling a personal story. If the artist is more comfortable using watercolor pencils, or pencils or colored markers, that’s fine with me. I just want them to try in some areas watercolor to see what it’s like and its possibilities. I will post student pictures soon!
My image is from a picture I took of the staircase in my parent's house where I grew up. I’m lucky that they are still living there so I can both visit them and it. I love the perspective looking down two flights of stairs and the changing perspective of all the balusters. While I don’t always get much work on my sketchbook done in class, I like to work on it as homework between classes too. I like to do what I ask of my students.
More from the 2 day Urban Sketching workshop with Gabi Campanario in Bothell. On Saturday after the walk by sketch of the vacuum parts robot casually sitting on a bench, the group moved to Hillcrest Bakery. This is a business that's been family owned and operated since 1934. It's a cute little blue and white shop at the bottom of Main Street. The drawing exercise here was to focus on line work and composition.
Line Work and Composition Exercise
Gabi's first sketch demonstration was on the side walk next to the bakery but with 12 or so sketchers that got a bit crowded so we moved across the street to draw. The throw down of sketchbooks was interesting as always and my sketch.
The fourth stop of the day was at Bothell Landing. It was a beautiful afternoon and it was packed with all sorts of people from young ballerinas, family reunions, two or three wedding groups, a girl in her huge puffy quinceañera dress held by her younger brother, and plenty of others. We first got to tour through the Hannan House, one of the three historic buildings grouped there. Gabi gave a demo of three ways to show value when he drew the school house. One was pencil, another was pencil with crosshatching and the final was watercolor. The exercise for us was to practice value. Incorporating the earlier ideas on composition and line work was encouraged - not surprisingly.
The stippling is complete on my next leaf, a Bigleaf Maple. It is very easy for me to get caught up in all the stippling. I know that I will be adding color on top of this so I don't have to be too exact, but it is tempting to just keep on adding more and more dots!
It's hard not to be impressed at the number of wires around this entryway. And it's hard to believe it all works. What I am curious about is what happens when something needs to be fixed. This is from Habana Vieja, Cuba.
This is a work in progress from Habana Vieja and the Castillo de la Real Fuerza. There are lots of lovely shades and nuances in the stones and I thought I'd play with stippling in some texture before I added color.