Saturday, April 4, 2020

SAHJ: Thinking about Food

I realized that I've been thinking a lot about how little I used to think about food. Now I search for Pasta like I'm Indiana Jones. So today I drew a clementine to really look at something I've always taken for granted.

Friday, April 3, 2020

More carpenters

Half the city is shut down, but workers are still coming round to work on my neighbor's house.  For which she's extremely grateful, hoping to be able to get back into it soon.

New Stuck at Home Journal Entries:

Well, wrapping up my my second week stuck at home and here are some of my observations. Hope everyone else is doing well.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Change is the Only Constant

I've been looking through old sketch books and asked myself, how has my drawing style changed over time?

Below you'll find three pages, each spaced about four years apart.

Although I'd been drawing for years, during a 2012 family trip to New York, I started sketching in earnest. And I sketched everything; at times to the chagrin of my family. What we ate, what we saw, who we met all got captured in pencil by day and with color come evening. In those days I was using the sketchbook as a journal as well.

My wife says this is her favorite of all my sketchbooks. She loves reading, so maybe that tells you something.

By 2016 I found myself saying less, trying to tell the story with drawings, but when I used words, I used bigger text. Back then, motion and feeling seemed more important to me than detail.

In late 2019, I took a sabbatical, traveling alone by boat in British Columbia. Since I didn't talk to anyone most of the time, I drew like a madman. Looking back through that sketchbook, there was a combination of bold pages, then pages with small drawings and text, much like 2012. I realize now that I was trying to capture and understand what I saw, all by myself.

I was frequently overwhelmed by the scale of the landscape and drew several pages similar to the one below. I see now that these big spreads were raw emotion.

A colleague at work only sees my books a few times a year. She says I'm getting "better."

I agree my sketching has changed and if it is for the better, it's because I'm learning to show how I see and that makes me happy.

How has your sketching changed over time?


Sunday, March 29, 2020

The Stuck at Home Sketch Journal: Making the most of a rough situation

During my stuck at home times, I decided to start a sketch journal of Indoor sketches. I'm really hoping this will keep up my creativity. Hope everyone is staying safe and creative.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Cherry Blossoms in the Time of Corona

All - I miss you.  I am glad you are my friends.  Painting this cherry tree in my neighborhood lifted my spirits.

During this tough time, I get to learn new skills.  On Saturday night I connected with family over Zoom.  It was the first time we had ever done that.  It felt great to hear and see each other laugh.  It was also fun to see where people chose to sit and to notice the different time zones through the lighting.  I got to see the hotel room where my sister is staying during her deployment in Georgia.  I got to see my mom's new baby chicks.

I hope you all find things to lift your spirits.  I have to believe it will be over before we know it.  There are lovely things about it.

Friday, March 20, 2020

The other camellia

A few buds and flowers from the second of my new camellias.
I went outside for this one, and sat in the sun on the wall between my yard and my neighbor's.

Monday, March 16, 2020

New plantings

I'd planned the locations of the new plants specifically so that I'd be able to see them from my bedroom windows.  Which worked out nicely when I now want to be able to sketch something from my window.

This is the part of the yard where most of the oak tree landed.  So between that, and the chimney fall and the equipment used to get the oak tree out, there wasn't much of my old landscaping left.

That's a camellia on the left, and a dogwood on the right, and random rounds of pine tree trunk set up in between, as a sitting area.

Sunday, March 15, 2020


Workers showed up this morning to do some demolition on my next-door neighbor's house!  Spanish-speaking guys, on a Sunday?  Has mass been canceled?  No, but the bishop has offered a dispensation, to those who aren't feeling well, or are at risk, are even the least bit uneasy about going to church.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Our March sketchcrawl is cancelled

Dear Sketchers,

What a whirlwind this week has been! After much deliberation we have decided to cancel March's meetup and join the international Urban Sketchers around the world and sketch the world outside your window at home. This was out my window this morning so there is always something.

The cherry blossoms should be blooming this week so you could also venture forth and head to the waterfront to sketch those.

So lets join all the sketchers around the world. Keep sketching and show our solidarity by posting our drawings with the hashtag #uskathome and we will all look forward to when we can sketch together again!

Take care, be well and stay safe,
Portland Urban Sketchers