Friday, April 29, 2016

Parker's Lighthouse

I went to the Marina in Long Beach a few times this week. Today, I was thinking about joining an urban sketching group from San Clemente, but it's an hour's drive, which means two hours not drawing, so I decided to stay closer to home. I went down to Rainbow Harbor in Long Beach, California. There are loads of interesting things to draw, including boats and buildings, both modern and rustic. It took me a while to settle, and in the end I chose this restaurant, called Parker's Lighthouse. I did a bunch of thumbnail warm-ups and three paintings. For the last one, Parker's Lighthouse, I took a few hours. It was a very complicated building. First I drew it in pencil, then I added ink, and then I watercolored the image. I took pictures between each step so I'd have a record in case I screwed it up.
Parker's Lighthouse - pencil sketch
Parker's Lighthouse - inked
Parker's Lighthouse - Final sketch
I tried to get a photo of my drawing and the building itself in the background, but I couldn't get things to line up.  There must be a better way, since the sketching folks do that a lot. I did take a selfie, though it was from the other side of the building and across the water.
On my other outings, I painted boats.


In the Craftsy class, Sketching the City, Shari Blaukopf Encourages us to draw thumbnails before we begin to draw a longer sketch. I'd been drawing a bit to warm up anyway, so it was easy to take up the thumbnails. When I was in Rainbow Harbor, it took me a while to settle, and I did quite a few thumbnails.



(There was a man painting poles.)
Thanks for looking!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Kiosk at Mother's Beach

I went to Mother's Beach while my kids played tennis this afternoon. I drew a kiosk that sells hamburgers in the summer. It is an odd shaped building, but a nice spot. A duck came and sat next to me for most of my sketch. I guess it wanted company. Or food.
Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Norm's House

Today I sketched from my porch. Here is the house and tree across the street. I spent a lot of time thinking about leaves in this one.
Here are some close-up's.

Between the leaves and the bricks,I got a lot of texture in this drawing.
Thanks for looking.

Reduction Printing

I watched this video by Canadian printmaker, Linda Cote, and thought I'd try my hand at reduction printing. I thought I'd be able to make myself keep it simple by doing a small one for my first attempt, but I still drew quite a complicated image. The final print is only 3x3 inches.
I printed the last two layers on their own as well.
Watch Linda Cote's video to see what reduction printing is. For my image, I first sketched it in my sketchpad.
And then I scanned it into the computer and traced it in Photoshop (and reversed it because, uh, I don't know why).
Then I printed the image and transferred it to an easy carve rubber block for carving. I learned a lot doing this. I am looking forward to doing another one.
Thanks for looking!

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Love the one you're with

Sometimes I can go somewhere wonderful to draw, and sometimes, I can't. Today I sat on a busy street, near the corner of Del Amo Ave. and Bellflower Blvd. and drew an orthodontist. It was an interesting building, and as the shop was closed, it had ample parking.
Here's my warm-up sketch. I'm smudging my pen all over the place. I think I only started having that problem after putting in the refill. It looks fines, so I'm thinking I really just need to stop dragging my hand over it.

Thanks for looking.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Learn by watching

So far, I have not managed to fit a painting or drawing class into my schedule. I have not lost hope, but for the moment, I am learning by watching. Here are three artists that are inspiring me at the moment, and whose sites I'd like to have handy links to.

Chih Wei Lin is a Taiwanese artist who specializes in pen and ink drawings and watercolors. His blog is 1/2 Art Shrimp 1/2 Artist (translated by google), and he is on Facebook, a frequent contributor to the Urban Sketchers Facebook Group. Currently he is traveling in Italy, sketching in pen and ink and sharing inspiring drawings daily.

Mike Barnard is an English artist who paints mainly architectural scenes with mixed media and acrylic. He has a beautiful book, with so many paintings, it's hard to believe he has had time to paint them all.

Marc Taro Holmes is a central participant among the Urban Sketchers, writing books, teaching online classes and I believe helping with the Urban Sketchers blog. I took his Craftsy class People in Motion and am now working through Travel Sketching. Both are very good, and reinforce each other. His on-line presence is largely that of a teacher, and his lessons are organized and consistent, so I am enjoying learning from him.

Enjoy!

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Huntington Pier

My mother and I went for a drive to find a place to sketch. All of a sudden I'm seeing good spots everywhere, but while we were driving, I found myself indecisive, tootling around for a while. It started to get close to sunset, so I pulled over on PCH almost to Huntington Beach, in sight of the pier.
Here's my warm-up sketch.


Today, I stayed near home, and sketched my neighbor's bus and front step. It got dark, so no paint today. Maybe tomorrow. I'm pretty sure I can find that location again.


Thanks for looking!