Urban Sketching Blog



August 25, 2017

After a long hiatus, I am back to posting my urban (and not-so-urban) sketches! A visit to my parent’s place in Michigan guaranteed some great sketch time. They live in the country, so I sketched their barn, where the barn swallows fly in and out, nesting and catching insects. The swallows come every year, around the same week of the year, and they leave around the same time. Their instinct is incredible, as they have a long flight south. I also sketched my mom’s garden, complete with Russian sage, Coneflower, and Yarrow. I loved the mix of colors and the lone bird house in the background, with peach trees as a backdrop. Such a lovely summer outing!

March 5, 2017

Today the Metrosketchers went to the Como Zoo and Conservatory, a favorite place to sketch. I sketched in the Sunken Garden while sniffing the fragrant azaleas. I always enjoy that room with its warm moist air and colorful flowers. Another favorite of mine is the Bonsai Room. I enjoyed looking at the miniature trees and displays. I also enjoyed looking out the back window to the  Japanese garden, which was devoid of anything green, since it is March in Minnesota. In a few weeks, the grasses, tree buds, and flowers will be out, a time to go back and sketch again. But at least I sketched an amazing tree–I liked all its curly branches going every which direction.

January 24, 2017

On January 21, I had the opportunity to participate in the Women’s March and Rally in St. Paul MN. I chose to sketch at the rally, something I had never done before. I came to listen, learn, sketch, and was amazed at the 100,000 Minnesotans at our state capital! I tried to capture signs, messages, and snippets of words from the various speakers. It was a peaceful, powerful, and inspiring experience, and I am really glad I attended!


October 25, 2016

I very much enjoyed sketching at the Grain Belt Brewery complex with the Twin Cities Urban Sketchers last Saturday. The weather was beautiful and there were many things to sketch. I enjoyed sketching the warehouse area and Keg House. I also sketched the old Office building. I tried a new technique—laid down watercolor washes first, then went and sketched in details with pen. This was more challenging, but also loosened up my sketch, which I liked. Having not sketched this area of the city before, I must say, it was a lot of fun! I liked seeing the river, bridges, and the Minneapolis skyline as I looked toward the south. I can’t wait to get out and sketch again!

Sept. 30, 2016

I completed this sketch in Stillwater today. The Fall Colors Fine Art and Music Festival is going on tomorrow and Sunday, Oct. 1 and 2, in Lowell Park. I was watching food trucks and vendors setting up, against the brilliant blue river and majestic hillside. People were out biking, walking, eating, and talking. It was a wonderful time! I chose this food truck for its bright colors and snappy advertising. A guy was setting up dried cornstalks near it. You always hear things from others when you sketch. I overheard two separate conversations about the Trump/Clinton debate, and then a group a Jewish men reading from Isaiah and discussing fasting. For more information on the upcoming festival, check out the link below. It will be a fabulous weekend for it!




Sept. 24, 2016

I have decided to get back into blogging. But this time, I’m going to write about my urban sketching experiences. I enjoy urban sketching so much, I have to share! Urban sketching is getting out into our world and sketching what we see on location. Not studio work, not from photos, but from LIFE. Between my plein air painting and sketching, I now work mostly from life, with very little work from photos, so this fits me well. Today I went on a fun SketchCrawl with the Twin Cities Urban Sketchers—the Green Line. We started on both ends and rode around, then met at Lake Monster Pub to share sketches and information. I started at Union Depot in St. Paul and rode to Target Field, then turned around and rode back. The sketches above are studies of people I saw on the train or objects I observed on the train. The grouping of people on 4th and Wacouta were done once I returned to Union Depot and had some time to just sit and sketch. The weather was cloudy, cool, and windy. There are many interesting people who ride the train around, it’s smooth, and a great method of transportation. And you see some great sights of our amazing cities!