Monday, July 1, 2019

It’s back! World Watercolor Month 2019

Charlie O’Shields, the creator of Doodlewash®, is the founder of World Watercolor Month. His own love of the medium led to the creation of a blog and social artist movement dedicated to promoting and connecting the vast community of watercolor artists all over the world. The blog has featured hundreds of artists sketching and painting with watercolor on all seven continents. According to Charlie, “There’s something magical about watercolor, and it’s my passion to bring all types of watercolor artists together to celebrate each other’s work and the medium we all love!”
Find out more at

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Multitasking the May 2019 Prompts

On this first day of the Every Day in May challenge, I realize my schedule for the coming days is going to be more than full. Aside from classes to teach today through Friday, we have our daughter, granddaughter and new great grandson coming to visit on Friday! As soon as family comes over, all other plans take a backseat!

With that in mind, I am going to try to get a little ahead on this year's commitment to sketching, drawing and painting on a daily basis. I'll do my best to go with the prompts, but daily sketching, no matter what the subject, is priority. So here goes:
“Some fruit, blueberries”—-“True Blue”

Many of these prompts overlap, so I can post to EDiM, Doodlewash and this weekend, to Moment sketchers. Check them all out and see which list appeals to you!

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Doodlewash Prompts for May 2019

You might want to combine the two big art challenges for May as you rev up your sketchbook next month!
Here's what Charlie O'Shields has for his list of prompts:


rainbow watercolorThis month is a thrilling exploration of color and an opportunity to get creative! Paint and draw whatever comes to mind when you think about these fun color sayings, or simply use the month to play with color combinations you’ve been wanting to try next. Though if you DO play along with the prompts, it will be super FUN as we see what’s True Blue for all of YOU! And it’s a great segue from last month’s return to childhood as your inner child will be a wonderful help this month. That kid always has the coolest ideas! So play and enjoy and see what you’ll think up this month as we enjoy a color a day in May!  Visit the link for rules and more information.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

New Prompts for EDiM

For those who wanted to know, here are this year’s daily prompts for EDiM 
Why not try out daily sketching for a week? Join the EDiM Facebook group and post your daily art!

Have fun with this!

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Notre Dame

For artists there is an avenue of expression in their work, a way to process shock, sadness and disbelief.
"Notre Dame Burning"  Original watercolor by Michele Cooper
 A catastrophic fire engulfed the iconic Notre Dame cathedral in Paris on Monday, April 15. I started this painting the next day as a way to realize the loss of such an amazing historical edifice.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

May 18, 2019--Urban Sketching Workshop Announcement

I’m looking forward to meeting my students in Seattle for the new USK 10x10 2019 Spring series of urban sketching workshops.

My class is  listed as #4, First Steps into Visual Journaling. May 18, Saturday.
Registration is now open for this one day workshop 

Ready to take your “First Steps into Visual Journaling”?

Registration begins Saturday, March 16, 2019, 9 a.m.The cost for each 3½-hour workshop is $60 through our “early bird” date, April 1, 2019. After April 1, the price is $70 per workshop. Registration will be processed by the event management website, Brown Paper Tickets. Please see the program schedule and workshop details and read  the FAQ for registration information. 

Have questions? Send email to:

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

The Story of an Icicle

I am excited about two things this morning:
  1. I was given a Winsor and Newton Series 7 brush last week and can't wait to try it out. It's just the right size, #5 round, for adding watercolor to my ink sketches. (I'm not about to take such a treasure out of the studio, so I need to find something here to paint.)
  2. An icicle is forming on the mailbox outside!
So I put on waterproof boots, two sweaters, a scarf and my woolly beret. I grab my sketchbook and a pen. I angle my white sketch paper to avoid snow blindness.

Standing in the driveway, focused on drawing the snow, the mailbox and the icicle, I hear the sound of an approaching motor.

It's the mail delivery truck!

I receive my mail by hand and chat with the courier for a few moments.

I prepare to resume my sketch only to discover that the action of opening the mailbox has completely dislodged the icicle and it lies in shattered fragments on the ground!

No worries, I already sketched my icicle. I go into the studio to warm up and lay in a few watercolor washes. Then when I go back out to compare my sketch with the scene for a few finishing touches, I discover that while I was painting inside, a new icicle was beginning to form on the edge of the mailbox. The circle of life!
My finished sketch of an icicle
A new icicle begins to form while I am warming up indoors.

Monday, January 21, 2019

National Squirrel Appreciation Day

Mischievous little critters, squirrels! And yet today is  National Squirrel Appreciation Day.

Relevant video follows here:

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Sketching at Da Shop with USK Oahu and family

My son’s family came with me to the USK Oahu sketch outing in Kaimuki at Da Shop, a relatively new bookstore that is part of a publishing warehouse. They specialize in books and authors from Hawaii and Oceania. Along with the books displayed in the store and online, they have children talk stories, food events, author and artist exhibitions, film screenings and lectures.

My sketch of my granddaughter, Ocean, sketching in the children’s corner.
I thought the children’s reading corner was so inviting. When I was a child I would have loved having a place like that to tuck into with a good book!
9 year old Leila sketching at Da Shop, Honolulu.
Leila’s sketches, minus one.
Our son, Matt, reading to his daughter, Ocean.

See more about the outing here

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Crafting a Journal While Stranded

Nov 17: Just finished my #junkjournal for #nikthebooksmith #desertedislandchallenge See the flip through at
I've been having fun in the craft side of my studio lately! Nik the Booksmith issued a journal making challenge called "The Deserted Island Journal Challenge".

We were challenged to make a journal from scratch with just a few items:
I was limited to 8 items:
#fabritac glue
#needle and #3plybamboothread
#guttedbook cover
Approximately 12x12" #fabric
One 12x12" sheet of #scrapbookpaper #Authentique #seamaiden #mermaid
#TimHoltzDistressInk #vintagephoto

This was so much fun, though challenging!
I'm almost finished with a surprise addition to this minimal journal. Subscribe to my craft channel to be notified when it will be public! Wait until you see how I blinged it all up!

I have a new YouTube channel just for my handmade journals and sketchbooks. Please visit, subscribe, like and comment! 
As always, I will post tutorials, demonstrations and other fine art watercolor videos on my original YouTube channel. Please subscribe to that one if your interest is more on the "watercolor fine art" side.