Saturday, February 28, 2015

Line to Color Workshop 2015: Orange County, CA

As of March 23 we are sold out for this workshop.  Contact Gail if you want to be put on a wait list or email list for future workshops.
May 1-3, 2015 the Line to Color Workshop will be in Orange County, California. Sketch with us at Mission San Juan Capistrano and the Beach Towns along the Pacific Coast Highway. The workshop is being co-hosted by Orange County AIA.
If you are interested in this workshop click on the Line to Color Icon for more information.  Contact for registration forms and space availability.  gail(at)glwarc(dot)com

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Practicing Watercolor techniques

It is good to try to keep watercolor as a fresh practice daily.  That way when you get out to drawing on site you have the muscle memory and experience to know how to handle what is presented before you.  These become in your memory ways of attacking a problem.

This is the same with line work as well.  Keep it fresh by practicing still life set ups at home if you can't get out. 

There are two ways I have been doing this at home.  I have been using Veronica Lawlor's book  "One drawing a Day"  which has drawing and painting exercise prompts.  I also look to Tom Hoffman's Watercolor Class blogs to get exercises to do.

The following paintings were about practicing soft and hard edges by copying a picture and trying to create the same affect. In these examples, I was just practicing on very cheap paper.  The paper as well as the timing, when you put color down with a wet on wet technique affects the outcome.  This would look totally different if I had done it on different paper,  if I had wetted both sides of the paper instead on one side, and when I lay the color down.  It is good to practice these and jot down your steps to remember how you created the affect.

Practicing edges Soft and Hard Edges.  Wet on Wet.

Soft and hard edges.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Seattle Urban Sketchers At Starbucks Roastery and Tasting Room

Sunday the Seattle Urban sketchers met for their monthly sketch outing at the new Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room.  It is an interesting place,  conceptually described as the Willy Wonka Factory of Coffee.  There you can see roasting vats and silos of coffee beans  with pneumatic tubes racing around the place transporting beans from one place to another.  This place is humming with people and activity,  coffee and tea and Tom Douglas's Serious Pie.  It is pretty overwhelming.  I stationed myself at immediately at an outside window looking toward the coffee bar and got an overall view of the place.  Next time  I will walk around and sketch some other interesting parts of the place.
In that neighborhood down the street is a Melrose Market a wonderful interior space fill with small market stalls,  a butcher, flower shop, restaurant, wine tasting bar and other vendors.
Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room
Melrose Market
Signage on Melrose St.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Four Days Before Sunshine again

I started this sketch on Tuesday thinking I could add watercolor to it the next day.  But the light was not the same.  For four days we had cloudy weather until this morning when I could see the sunlight hit the tree and the house.  That's Seattle winter for you.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Morning Sketch

There is a huge tree across the street that is probably 80 feet tall with probably a 5 ' diameter trunk.  It is beautiful but messy in the fall and winter.  I did this quick sketch this morning starting with the tree trunk and branches the added the adjacent house, carport and fencing.  This took about 20 minutes to do.  I will go out tomorrow morning and paint it.

Friday, February 13, 2015


Two watercolor sketches of an Amarillis I started growing a week before Christmas.  It didn't finally bloom until mid to late January.  Next year I will start earlier.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Media Experimentation

 Experimentation with different media and tools.
Twig and china ink, watercolor and neo color.
Ink with dip pen,  and watercolor.
Hero pen, waterbrush with ink and water.

Hero Pen, Waterbrush with ink and water.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Line to color sketch

Yesterday I had to go to Les Schwab to get my right tire fixed.
I took the opportunity to sneak a sketch in the waiting room. 
I finished a line drawing while I was there and then added color from memory this morning.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Contour Line Drawings

I was recently at the VA hospital as a part of a study on diet and glycemic index.  While I was there I sketched to pass the time.  Here are two simple line drawings done while I was there.