Friday, November 30, 2012

Santa at the Mall

I walked down towards Sears (walking, walking - looking for Jim) and ended up here where Santa is and the kids get their photos taken.  It's quite a set up and took me a bit to get everything in!

A gentleman did stop and chat with me about drawing his daughter's picture on a banjo (he custom builds banjos!) as she passed away 15 years ago.  Happy to do it and hope he likes it!  Sorry to miss Jim though - it's much more fun to draw in a group...


So Jim and I missed each other today at the mall but it looks like we both got some sketching in anyway!  I started by Barnes & Noble sketching the ATM machine and was kindly greeted by a security guard who asked me to check with the Mall Office before I started drawing - ESPECIALLY the ATM machine (maybe I was studying it closely to see how to get inside!).

After chatting with Barb, the manager of the mall and a friend in my Rotary club, she determined I was harmless and said go to it.  We just asked that we refrain from including any store names in our drawings as those are proprietary and she could get in trouble.

I wasn't particularly thinking of what was IN the ATM just that it stuck out below all that Christmas finery!

"Mall Peoples"

I arrived at the mall this morning at 9:30ish because I wanted to walk around a bit before meeting up with the others at 10 in the Food Court.  So at 10 I spotted this group of "older" folks sitting around three co-joined tables in the Food Court, drinking coffee and enjoying each other's company. 

I decided they needed to find their way into my sketchbook and it was a good way to spend time waiting for the others. 

Unfortunately, I didn't know one of us was in Oregon, and the other forgot where we were going to meet.  So here are two of us at the mall sketching, but in different places.  We never crossed paths. 

The other two sketches following this are a couple I did after leaving the mall at about 10:40. 

"Main Entrance to the Mall"

This is the main entrance to the Columbia Center Mall here in Kennewick, WA.  We were here today to capture something of a Christmas essence, but I just couldn't find it inside; but here, at the main entrance I spotted these huge Chrismas balls (which don't appear so huge here) and decided this would be my "essence" sketch today. 

"Office Building on Gage"

This has to be one of the most unattractive architectural sites in the Tri-Cities, if not the entire state, or region, or maybe even the entire western United States, or, well, you get the point.  The six of them tower above all the adjacent and distant buildings and remind one of huge outhouses rather than the office buildings they are.  Built about six years ago, few people I know ever mention them other than to say, "You know, those big outhouses on Gage."   
Unusual?  Yes.  Attractive?  Not so much. 

Sunday, November 25, 2012


Let's meet at the mall this Friday Morning at 10:00 and sketch the Christmas happenings!  Plan to stay and have a bite to eat in the Food Court and share your drawings!  FUN!!!  (RSPV here)

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Not really an "urban sketch" as such, still I wanted to wish everyone who drops by once in a while a "Happy Thanksgiving" today. 
Don't overdo, but don't hold too far back either, I mean, heck, we only get to do this again next month.  And two times in the year is never enough. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


A little restraint here sketching Dalkey Island - this time the view of the ancient chapel on the island.

Monday, November 19, 2012


Takin' over here...

This is the same Dalkey Island that sits outside my daughter's window in the Irish Sea.  I am working on skies but then you can't just work on the skies because what you do there then reflects (eh eh) on the ground colors as well and you have to work on those too.  Sometimes the colors in the sky are muted so the colors have to reflect that on the ground.  I darkened the ground colors and it all seemed to 'go' a lot better.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


These 'apartments' (certainly more expensive and expansive than your normal apartment) are on a point overlooking Dalkey Island.  The building is called 'Sorrento Terrace' and has the most incredible views (not to mention lovely chandeliers...)!

I went back to my smaller sketchbook because I felt the larger one was making me draw too carefully.  I prefer the rough scribbling and rapid movements and no care attitude in my smaller sketchbook.  These Ireland drawings are sure giving me great opportunities to find some greens!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

"Third Saturday Sketchabout"

When you drive east on the main street in Kennewick, Washington, aka., "Kennewick Avenue," you come to a stop sign.  At that sign you must turn either left or right onto Washington Street because the building you see here is directly in front of you.  It was built in the early 1900's and placed here purposely so that anyone coming to this intersection would see it, and hopefully stop to purchase supplies. 

Today it sits mostly empty.  When I was a kid it was known at "Leon's Cafe," and at that time I thought it had always been "Leon's Cafe" and that it always would be known as such.

In 1969, a year post-college, for me, I went into "Leon's" one New Years Eve and ran into an old friend of mine, let's call him, Jerry.  When we were in high school Jerry and his girlfriend were pretty tight; but once our junior year I heard they had broken up so I asked her to go to Homecoming with me that year ('63).  Not long afterwards they were back together. 

So, in '69 when I see Jerry in "Leon's" I figure they have been married a while.  I asked him how she was doing and he told me wasn't sure because they had separated ways some time back.  I asked him where she lived, and few weeks later, called her. 

She and I have been married 42 years this month.  

The building here is also a trip down nostalgia lane.  We were in high school in the early to mid sixties, before "American Grafitte," and the term, "cruising" had been invented, at least that's how I remember it.
We had a circuit we drove though, probably close to 7 or 8 miles, round trip.  On the far east end of the circuit was Zip's, our favorite hamburger joint, and when I say "our" I'm talking about everybody who went to our school, about 7 or 800 kids then. 
On the far westerm end was a vacant lot in what was then known as "Angus Village." I think it was before we graduated ('64) some company came in and built this ugly round structure in our vacant lot.  Today it is Chase Bank, and I think it has always been a bank of some kind.
I was sitting in the vacant lot once, listening to the radio in my '53 Chev, to Kennewick High playing a football game in Wenatchee.  I was quite surprised to hear the announcer call my name as the player who scored a touchdown.  I had been injured and didn't make the trip.  Cool, huh?   

There were two USkTC Sketchers out today.  Boy, it is getting harder and harder to find anyone who wants to do this with me! 

Friday, November 16, 2012


This castle is just a block or so away from Rebekah's house on the water side of the road.  It's vacant, a bit run down and in foreclosure with the bank but heck - it's STILL a castle, right?  If I didn't already have a building project...


This is a view of Dalkey Island from the front of Rebekah's house.  There are some ancient ruins on the island - a round tower and a small chapel.  There's no way to get to it except by boat or kayak - some day (when it's warmer) I will go there!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Monday, November 12, 2012

"University of Washington Huskies vs the Utes of Utah"

So, the first thing on the page was the far goal post.  Oops. 
The University of Washington Huskies took on the Utes of Utah State at Century Link Field last Saturday.

My son-in-law invited me to join him and my two grandsons, so we drove the 4 hours it takes to get there and had a great time. The Huskies won 34 - 15 amid great cheering, shouting, and encouragement from the 60,050 fans who were there.

6x9 Aquabee Sketcbook, ink, watercolor

Sunday, November 11, 2012

I plan on visiting a few of the artist on the open studio tour. l'm thinking of starting in richland/west richland and ending i downtown kennewick for a late lunch.
i will be at the richland hastings coffee shop on g-way at 10:45 and i have extra brochures. 460-8317

Monday, November 5, 2012

Fall in the Tri-CIties

Here is a really great line of trees that had turned a bright yellow gold - Whoo Hoo!

 I threw on the paint first then drew some lines.  I wanted to be sure and get the shapes the colors made and not get lost in the lines...

This is a front entrance at WSU Tri-Cities.  I looked at it a while and found it very geometric so I pushed that a bit.  Those are not boats - they are trees with great orange foliage.

Beautiful, beautiful day with bright sunshine, gorgeous colors and just a hint of cool.  I'm afraid the leaves will be mostly dropped next Friday leaving the dark outlines against some white/gray skies. Winter is coming...

Friday, November 2, 2012

"Washington State University, Tri-City Campus"

Out looking for fall foliage today with Nancy, we came across these trees at the WSU Tri-Cities Campus.

Our weather, though not as unusual as that being experienced with Hurricane Sandy on the east coast, is still, quite unusual lately.  Today is November 2nd and it felt more like May 15th.  Nice, bright sunshine and coat-less, even warm, temperatures.

Too bad it won't last until next Friday because we agreed we really didn't get as much drawing in as we wanted.