Friday, October 31, 2014

Day 31 of Inktober 2014 - I did it!

For the last three ink drawings of Inktober I chose to draw windows, from inside looking out. Each one is a window from the building where I taught my watercolor class that day.

For Wednesday, I chose a view across the rooftops and beyond. For Thursday, I chose the window display at the gallery and through to the outside. For today, I looked out the second floor window of Kirkland Arts Center and down to the rainy street corner below.

All done! 31 ink drawings in 31 days! See my Instagram for the entire collection. 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Windows, Looking from the Inside Out

At the beginning of the month, the weather was as lovely as fall can get and I drew windows from the outside looking in. Now at the end of October, it is windy and raining in earnest. I decided to draw the last three days of Inktober from the inside looking out of windows.

One day to go for my Inktober challenge!
I drew this one from inside the gallery where I teach my Thursday watercolor classes. Then I went out to get a photo from the street side. Mark A. Ellinger's blown glass is too beautiful to leave in black and white.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Inktober Sketchbook Spread

3 more days of "Inktober"
We've returned from attending a family wedding in California recently. I wasn't sure how I could do it, but I managed to keep up my daily ink drawings for Inktober* while we were away. Here's a page from three days.

1. An early morning view from our hotel window.
2. A bottle of Scotch from our son-in-law's collection.
3. The strawberry jam that our daughter made. We brought home two jars. Should have sneaked a few more into the's scrumptious!

*Counting down from today, there are three days left and I will have completed 31 ink drawings in 31 days of Inktober!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Announcing 20th Annual Studio Open House

Pear with Grapes-Original Watercolor

Our 20th Annual Studio Open House takes place on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014. Hours: 10am-7pm

5-7pm: Wine, Cheese, Nibbles and a drawing for $100 worth of Art from Michele's NW Studio

We are excited to show new works and welcome artists, students and friends. Enjoy some nibbles, conversation and perhaps take home a painting, DVD or just the experience of visiting a real working art studio.

Save a spot on your calendar and come on over!
Contact me for map and directions. Send email to michelec12 at gmail dot com

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Sunday sports for Sunday Painters

What sports do you play on a weekend? Are you a participant or a bystander? Either way, you have lots of subject matter from which to choose: action sketches, figures, outfits and sports gear. I am sure an easy warmup sketch of a simple volleyball could get you started! 
I like the official uniform. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Busy Broadway Farmers' Market

Late Post from Sunday with Seattle USk.
The red brick plaza on the SE end of Seattle Central Community College began filling up with Seattle Urban Sketchers a little after 10 am. People from Mt Vernon to Issaquah joined the locals to sketch at the Broadway Neighborhood Farmers' Market. Summer produce gave way to harvest time crops like beets, French carrots, fennel, mushrooms, and freshly made artisan cheese, cider, cookies, pickles and jams.
My busy page reflects the lively and crowded market.
Samish Bay Cheese offered samples of "Arugula Ladysmith" with calendula blossoms and "Black Mambazo" an aged cheese with cocoa, chipotle and black pepper coating. I sampled Woodring's Black Currant Lemonade and fresh pressed cider. Chao Chang Garden just kept piling up the fresh fennel, flowers, beets and gigantic French carrots.

I think everyone came outdoors, knowing that this is probably the last beautiful fall day with sunshine for awhile. 
(I had an outing with the Anacortes Sketchers to post on Monday and my regular "Sunday Painters" feature for today, Sunday the 19th, so this is posted on Tuesday.)

Monday, October 20, 2014

Gordon's Skagit Farms with ASk

This is the second year and the third time I've been to Gordons. It requires at least an annual visit just to see what clever, inspirational and artistic way they are arranging their bounty of the season. (See my blogposts from last October to compare.)
I decided to make my drawing of the day for Inktober 2014. You make 31 ink drawings in 31 days and post them to your blog, FB, Instagram, Twitter, etc. and tag them with #Inktober or #Inktober2014. I decided to post mine here and on my Instagram since I am quite pleased to have reached Day 20!
Doesn't this look like an ice cream sundae with a cherry on top?
This is as far as I got with my color sketches of the day, since I was distracted by chefs arriving, hunting down sketchers for candid photos, misplacing my sketchbook, and various other feather headed things. I have to say, though, that I was enchanted by the way the pumpkins and gourds were stacked up like wedding cakes or the best 6-scoop gelati from Florence.

See more about today's outing on the Anacortes Sketchers Blog.

Sunday, October 19, 2014


Do you remember that charming and witty painting called "Life is just a chair of bowlies?" I still think it is one of my all time favorite plays on words. (And you know how I like plays on words!)

So this week's challenge for you Sunday painters is to take a season, like fall, and instead of painting the autumn leaves, AGAIN, find things around the house, garage or garden that are fall colors. Use them as props for your newest attempt at painting autumn color.
Tip for beginners: Start by drawing from an overhead view. Don't worry about getting a perfect circle, it looks forced and unnatural in a live drawing.
Watch out for camera perspective problems
It's best to paint from life. You may practice, though, by using these photos. Just be aware that the camera does not have binocular vision like we do and the further out to the edges you get, the more problems there are with perspective. (See the window frame leaning toward the outside edges?)

Update: I went sketching with Seattle Urban Sketchers this morning and plan to be with Anscortes Sketchers tomorrow. This morning's sketches will be posted on Tuesday.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Williams' Farm Pumpkin Patch

Today I drove around the corner after my class at A Guilded Gallery to find the sun shining across the pumpkin patch owned by Williams Farms. Melissa, a family member, has everything set up beautifully in the little shed. She has a display of "Exotics" with a friendly scarecrow on top of a giant power line spool.

My sketch for the day in my Pentalic Aqua Journal
A panorama opens up for you, from the water truck, to the eye line displaying every kind of tree, the old house nearly buried under blackberry vines, the distant hills on the coastline, the corn maze on your right, and most of all-the pumpkin patch! If there ever was a time to use a full spread panoramic sketchbook, this it!

We are all welcome to sketch there anytime!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


As you know, a global project is underway for artists, called Inktober. 31 drawings in 31 days. Draw something in ink and post it each day on FB, TWITTER, YOUR BLOG, INSTAGRAM, etc. View mine by using the Instagram button in the right hand column. There are half marathon and quarter marathon options.

I chose one of my unused sketchbooks that had enough pages to hold all 31 drawings. On average, I plan to draw two or three per page. Each collection over those days will have some sort of continuity. Usually they are placed consecutively by date. The current page on Monday was where I planned to draw number 3 of a series on balsamic vinegar bottles.  And then........... 

As you can see, I've taken some liberties with the models.
I visited a private home with some of my sketcher friends and was inspired by their collection of raven carvings, sculptures and objets d'art. 
What other traits do ravens have? The middle one goes in tomorrow.
Each piece in their collection was as individual as the artist who created it. After observing them for awhile, you notice this about animals and wildlife, too. For my sketchbook and daily drawing, I plan to do a page on ravens. Three ravens and three personality traits, highly exaggerated: the somewhat threatening, aggressive quality they sometimes have, (tbd) and their humorous character.

By the way, the two out on the power lines came and went on another sketching day and I dropped them in for balance. We have lots of trees in our neighborhood, but underground power, so our crows and ravens just walk around in the street.