Saturday, September 29, 2012

Early morning drawing with Urban Sketchers at the Mercer Winery in Prosser Washington, (near the landing zone for the Prosser Balloon Rally). This winery is the best: great people, great wine, great location, and they were playing Johnny Cash softly on the outside speakers!

Friday, September 28, 2012

"Tri City Urban Sketchers"

Sketching at Mercer Winey in Prosser, WA., Sept 28th, 2012.
LtoR:  Dave Poynter, Nancy Thurston, Jim Bumgarner

"Mercer Winery: Prosser, WA."

When I got home from our outing to Prosser's Mercer Winery, I redid my sketch on large 12 x 18 paper, and this is it.  I think the best part may be the birds. I forgot to add the supports for the overhangs over the doors, and I wanted to add the umbrellas they set up, just for us, toward the end of the draw and I completely forgot to add them.  And, the "border line" may be just a tad too DARK. 

This one is the original sketch done on the property.  It's a bit looser, I like that better, but I don't like what the "bordered line" did to the overall image.  That's one reason why I decided to use this as the guinea pig for a redo at a larger size.   

Interesting thing for me is the owner of the winery is Rob Mercer.  He was a student of mine at Prosser High the last year I was there. 

Dave's Post Cards!

While we were in Prosser, we stopped in at the Sixth Street Gallery (is that right, Dave?) where Dave has his own POST CARD STAND - and here he is, standing in front of it.  Dave draws on the front of blank cards, includes an envelope, puts the set in a plastic wrapper and sells them here for $4.50 - it's quite a deal for Original Art!  Dave, Jim and I are slowly working out a way to take our original drawings and print them on cards to offer to the wineries around in sets to sell.  Some day.  Maybe.


This morning we headed out to Prosser and stopped at Mercer Winery.  The top drawing was my last drawing of the day and I was overly free with the pen drawing - just merrily whipping it out across the page.  Funny how the easy looseness of it works (at least to me!) and it has a real fun character about it.

I didn't realize the acres of plastic crates belonged to the winery next door, thinking I was getting a larger view of Mercer Winery in the bottom drawing.  Funny how that ONE line across the top of the nearest roof on the left side is angled up instead of down and how it throws the whole drawing off!  I can fix that...

Here we were, sitting in the Fred Meyer parking lot at 8:00 am and we realized the hot air balloons were going up today in Prosser!  We hurried down there to find the majority of them already landed but got a few fun 'grounded' shots.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


We better keep doing this as long as the weather holds (where did summer go?!) so meet this Friday morning at 8:00 in the Fred Meyer parking lot (near McDonalds') and let's head back out toward Red Mountain and the sun and the vineyards dripping with globes of sweet nectar!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

"Sketch and Sip at the Terra Blanca Winery"

Thanks to Andrew Shoeshaker for the pic.  Our batteries were dead.

It is unanimous, we had a great time at Terra Blanca winery Friday evening drinking fine wine, enjoying great food and a breathtaking sunset through the arches that line the terrace, and sketching the "Attached Strings."

We all agreed this was the most fun we have ever had out sketching.  Maybe it was the wine.  Maybe it was the ambience.  Maybe it was Nancy's new Lamy Safari pen.  And maybe, it was the music.  Whatever you think it might have been, it was. And whatever it was manifested itself in our sketches.  We are loving this, and we are going to continue working it until we get sick of it.

To add to the images Nancy and Dave have already posted, here are a few from Jim.

Terra Blanca Winery, Strings Attached, Benton City WA, Lapoynte

Out to Terra Blanca Winery with the TriCity Urban Sketchers to drink local wine and hear local entertainers like “Strings Attached.” The wine was good the entertainment was great and the location and views during sundown amazing!


Jim, Dave and I met at Terra Blanca Winery last night to do our weekly sketching.  The only thing that would have made the evening absolutely perfect was if the sun would have hung in that evening sky for about 2 more hours...  The weather was gorgeous, the sunset unbelievable and the setting was incredible!  We ate 'Tapas', shared a bottle of wine and drew the musicians.  The guy playing the guitar is Chuck, who also doubles as a tennis pro at the Court Club. He and a buddy, who plays the violin, form the group "Strings Attached" and we had a great time drawing them as they played some great, great music.  How delightful!!!


It appears that I am really enjoying the 'line'.  It is especially fun to find the contour and simply use my Lamy pen and ink to skip around here.  It really helps me to see how shapes and edges relate to one another and in getting proportions right.  I wonder if I will ever paint again...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


The End of Chardonnay?  More please.
Meet the "USkTC" group at Terra Blanca Winery this Friday night at 6:00 to sip some wine, taste some tapas, listen to 'Strings Attached' and draw!  Terra Blanca is surrounded by rolling hills, ponds and of course, vineyards - a beautiful backdrop to some really fun sketching opportunities.  Will you be there?

USkTC:  Urban Sketchers: Tri-Cities, WA.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

"The Definition of Urban Sketching - in Video Format"

If you want to see what those of us really enjoy about the sketching we do together, click on the picture of Lynne Chapman below.  There you will find a lovely video, "Sketchcrawing in Yorkshire Sculpture Park" that features . . . a small group of sketchers, and Lynne.

Please note however, the story in this short video isn't about the park, it's about the people: their socialization, their art, the opportunity they are experiencing for growth, and the peaceful enjoyment of time well spent.

And btw, Jim Bumgarner says he met Lynne Chapman in Santo Domingo. "She is a marevelously energized woman who, among many other things illustrates childrens' books, and leads the "Sketchcrawl North" sketchers who are located in and around Sheffield, England. 

We hope you enjoy the video and that if you haven't yet, you will join us sometime, soon. 

Lynne Chapman at the 2nd International USK Symposium in Lisbon, 2011.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

"The Sentries of Fertilizer"

While poking around the railroad tracks in Pasco, I came across this sentry of tanks standing guard over . . . I don't know what . . . so I stopped and sketched them out. Someone said the yellow sky made them think the whole thing is TOXIC. Ya think?

Lamy Safari pen, Lexington Gray Noodler's Ink, Stillman & Bern Sketchbook.


After getting run off from the unknown winery, we wandered down the road a bit to a small, rectangular building where Cooper Wines are made.  I really like the simplicity of this building and feel it lends itself well to this type of drawing, however, it is a good to realize ANYTHING can be simplified, it's just a little easier when it already starts out that way!  The bottom 2 are 4"x6" cards with envelopes.



And yes, I mean whinery - these guys didn't want us there quietly drawing...

These are very small - maybe 3" square cards - that I purchased at Michaels for a measly couple bucks.  I am experimenting with making these little thumbnails as finished pieces of art and think they are very fun.  It seems that the border plays a big part in these and I would like to make a border in the middle of a large card with the drawing in the middle of some really big margins.  Next time!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Roaster's Coffee, Richland WA, Lapoynte

When I'm in Richland I stop at Roaster's for coffee and these are a few of my sketches of this wonderful place. The one of the three women shows one woman wearing some gag gift glasses she got as a birthday gift.

Cooper Winery, Red Mountain WA, Benton City WA, Lapoynte

I was out sketching with my Urban Sketcher Friends at Cooper Winery located on Sunset Road at Red Mountain. This is a humble winery that makes exceptional wines and is located in the beautiful Red Mountain wine appellation. If you are in this area you must stop in at all the Red Mountain Wineries located on Sunset Road and this should be your first stop!

K at the Cafe

One thing I missed about life in Taiwan is be able to enjoy my coffee while looking at my girls draw.  K just got her new Snoopy shirt and was eager to show off at the coffee shop that day.  It was fun to try to copy her drawing upside down.

Friday, September 7, 2012


It was a hot July day in Kaohsiung.  A fair at a park where filled with trees, people, children, and games.  E was lining up to play a game with her aunt.  Just had a plain drawing sketch pad and a ballpoint pen with me.  Nevertheless, I was drawn to the bright umbrellas.  (I finally got to light wash it with some color long after the vacation.)  


This is "Cooper Winery."  The owner was very welcoming and actually a little excited to have us sketching his winery.  He took a couple of pictures of us and one with his dog, Bud, in the photo.  He also took a picture of the three of us.  He was very interested in our art which may translate into him using some of them in the winery.  Sorry, I didn't get his name, but here's a link to their Facebook page. 

L to R: LaPoynte, Jim Bumgarner, Nancy Thurston. At Cooper Winery 9.7.12.



Not everyone in the neighborhood was as friendly and accomodating.  Just sayin'.

"Farmers' Market - Richland"

After some "sketchabouting" with Dave and Nancy at the wineries this morning (see previous postings), I decided to drive down into Richland to see if I could find anything to sketch. 
Little did I know the Farmers' Market runs on early Friday mornings.  Guess I haven't been paying much attention to the local FM's around here this year.  The one in Richland is my favorite because of the setting in the Parkway streets, it is clean, weed and dust free, and the clientele is generally up-beat, maybe even more ...upscale... here.    

Thursday, September 6, 2012

"Roxy Theatre"

The old Roxy persists in downtown Kennewick.  Most of the kids I went to school with remember going to movies here, but I moved here in 1957 and it was closed.  Today it supports an antique shop and a super friendly little coffee shop up front, the "Kennewick Coffee Co."

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

"Sports Page Tavern"

A couple of days ago my wife and I went to the Sports Page Tavern in downtown Kennewick for lunch.  Their food is straightforward and honest in preparation as well as presentation, and my wife loves their cheeseburgers.  I think I had a chef salad.  

"Country Mercantile"

A few days ago Nancy and I drove out to the Country Mercantile north of Pasco, WA, on highway 395, to see what we could see and sketch.  We sketched around the outside of the shop for a while then went inside to capture some of items there.  I spotted this try of chocolate-covered apples and they reminded me of some of the 'exotic' foods we saw at the Farmers' Market in LA a couple of weeks ago.

In another room, there are watermelons, cantaloupes, green beans, squash, onions, apples, and other fruits and veggies fresh from their fields and other surrounding farms.

Saturday, September 1, 2012


These are the day's first sketches.  A couple thumbnails then an early morning vineyard.
The second sketch includes the first thumbnail that located the darkest spots as well as that little area of light peeking through the arbor.  Great views make great sketches!

When I showed the sketches to Dave, he said he liked my thumbnails best and that they could be easily made into cards.  So I did a couple little ones and he handed me one of his notecards and I drew one.  Not crazy about the drawing - I will have to relax and just draw what I see - but Dave wanted me to color the roof blue.  I compromised...

The weather is perfect, the morning light is delightful and the company is great fun.  What an enjoyable experience to be able to go out each week with this group!

Hedges Winery, Benton City WA, Red Mountain, Lapoynte


I sketched the Fountain area in the front of the winery. The grounds around the Hedges winery are very well maintained and the multiple garden areas are wonderful. There is even an herb and vegetable garden that would be perfect for an outside lunch; to be sketched soon.