Tamra and I spent the morning at the Fair. Not much changes and if you go every year and I think you run the risk of losing the excitement going to the fair should create. We were given exhibitor passes and were able to get in early in the morning without the public, a completely different world.....calm before the storm.
We walked into a livestock barn and discovered a whole pen of Sheep Superheros - masked and caped (body blanket) animals who seem intent on concealing their identity. I learned later that the owners who show these animals deck them out in these outfits to keep them clean.
Told my wife I was just running down to get us coffee, sat down to do this sketch and got back an hour and a half later. Told her it was a really long line....she knows better. If I do sketch at a strip mall near our housing development, am I just a suburban sketcher?
Our good friends Tom and Jackie live just off the Ferry dock on Anderson Island in the South Puget Sound. Through a gap in the trees, you look over the walkon parking lot and across the water lies McNeil Island Penitentiary, former home of Charles Manson ('61-'66) and Robert Stroud (The Bird Man of Alcatraz). The second sketch is from their balcony looking East over the Sound toward Dupont and Steilacoom.
Ok, we were due for a rainy SketchCrawl. This was drawn from the middle of the locks looking West toward Elliott Bay. The rain held off till I was putting in the sky, I kind a liked the salt effect rain had on the sketch. I was amazed at how many times the bridge went up and down - Lot's of boats going to the UW/USC game....and at least three long freight trains.
Pretty good sketch crowd for a rainy day and enjoyed the lunch discussion (about all things sketching) at the Lockspot Cafe with Tim, JP, Susan and Gabi.
This was an odd day of sketching. I came into town to be part of the Seattle Plein Aire painting event and was befriended sometime around noon by an intoxicated self admitted drug addict who calls Gas Works Park his home (he lives in one of the old industrial structures that make up the park). The work on my second sketch virtually came to a halt as he realized I was a captive audience (pack, chair, and easel - I wasn't going anywhere) and lectured Hopper-esk (Dennis not Edward) to me for most of the afternoon.
I was trying to be nice and didn't tell this guy to go away, but I should have - he caught me completely off guard when he wet his fingers with tears (he was recalling a family tragedy then walked over and started painting on my sketch with his wet fingers....then he grabbed the sketch book and walked away with it to a table of associates he had been drinking with earlier. I didn't get the book back until I gave him a pen to do a drawing with. I was trying to be diplomatic and violence isn't my style (and did I really want to mix it up with a drug addict?).
I pulled out an half used inexpensive watercolor tablet and exchanged it for my sketchbook, told him to keep the tablet and the pen....He told me he was going to do a drawing for me and showed me where I could find it the next time I came back to the park. Strange days.....
It was a grey gloomy day, so I tracked down some local colorful buildings to generate some interest. City Frame is located in downtown Kent (Seattle area). I found a picnic table across the street and though it didn't rain on me I did have to contend with the occasional SUV parking in front of me.
Trattoria Mitchelli's, an Italian restaurant in Pioneer Square has been there for some 30 years and sadly I've read that it will be closing it's doors soon. This breaks my heart, for it was a good place for a bowl of pasta and strong cup of European coffee. Taught our daughter how to slurp noodles there.....
A very interesting culture all to itself - life at a laundry mat. There are the cagey veterans, the clueless newbies and those of us who fall somewhere in-between. There are the people who talk to everyone (whether they are listening or not) and those who don't say a word (but don't miss a word that is being said) and everyone else in-between. There's the mom with four small children and enough laundry in the mini van to bring the front wheels off the ground or the single traveler doing his backpack full of laundry and those of us who fall in-between....
Beyond family, I'd say that art, sports and the quest to cook a great meal are the big priorities in my life.
I am 56 years old, and live in the Seattle area with my wife of 29 years. I have a beautiful daughter who shines as an EMT in Pierce County and I live in the suburbs, but truth be told, would rather be a city or country boy.
I love a good game of hoops and nothing makes me happier than the opportunity to draw and paint.....Time stops.
I like my brew dark, that goes for coffee and beer.
Artist For Hire
I am an illustrator and designer available for hire. Please feel free to send me a note or call 206.227.8430 if you are interested in my work. Other samples of work can be found at: