Monthly Sketch Outing

Next Monthly Sketch Outing
Sunday, October 16
Green Lake Village
450 N.E. 71st St
Seattle, WA 98115
meet in the plaza in front of PCC at Green Lake Village
10:00 A.M.

See Monthly Outings Page for details.

See Adhoc Outings for additional sketch events during the month.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Bergen Place

9/23/16 Bergen Place Park
Named for the Norwegian city, Bergen Place is a small but colorful park in the center of Ballard. On Sundays, the park is lively with farmers market shoppers, but on this gusty, drizzly Friday morning, it was quiet except for the regular, startling outcries of a man in flip-flops making erratic hand gestures. (I think the park is his home; I’ve seen him on farmers market days, rummaging through trash cans, shouting at persons unseen by the rest of us.) Despite the questionable weather, four hardy sketchers showed up.

Attracted to the juxtaposition of real trees and art trees, I stood across the street to sketch the park until the drizzle turned to full-on rain. Then I retreated to Starbucks, where a front window gave me a slightly different view of the park, this time with some of the Scandinavian flags visible.
9/23/16 Bergen Place Park

We decided to meet at the Ballard public library for our sketchbook throwdown. While I waited a few minutes for the others to show up, I stood near the library’s entrance to catch the sidewalk scene.

I hate to say it, but it feels like fall, and outdoor sketching season is probably over.

9/23/16 near Ballard library
Kathleen, Kate, Tina and Suzanne: hardy sketchers!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Upper Queen Anne Hill

On a beautiful sunny Sunday morning, these scenes presented themselves during our group's monthly meet-up. Because there were so many details in each view, I decided to be selective and not draw everything. Sometimes, white space can be just as powerful as what we do draw.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The Devil Makes Coffee

I first found Diablo Coffee shop online back in the early aughts - a cuban coffee shop with cafe con leche--sounded like a cheap trip to tropics for a wet Seattle winter day. But when last Sunday turned out to be bright and sunny, I wanted to venture out into the streets. The 5-Spot seemed to be a popular spot for bunch.

After we met I went back to get a take on our meeting spot, Diablo Coffee which shares a shady patio with Queen Anne Book Company. 

Roy DeLeon and I ordered Cuban sandwiches and sat on the patio chatting. We pulled out our sketchbooks and did quick sketches of each other before departing until next month. 

Monday, September 19, 2016

El Diablo Again

El Diablo Coffee Company behind the counter.

El Diablo Coffee Company drawn last year.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Queen Anne + Green Lake

The goddess of Fall smiled upon Seattle this Sunday and brought the sun along with her. Queen Anne was buzzing as sketchers met up at El Diablo Coffee Company. After getting myself a cup of white mocha, I stuck around and sketched the nice shaded outdoor patio.
El Diablo & Queen Anne Book Co. - Outdoor Patio

I arrived at the venue rather late, so I decided to stay within close proximity of the cafe. Bethany Presbyterian Church across the street has some interesting architectural details. I sketched the main entry door and finish just in time before people started pouring out from the Sunday mass. 

Queen Anne Bethany Presbyterian Church - Main Entry Door

The wooden trellis over the cafe's outdoor patio piqued my interest. With 15 minutes to spare before 'throwdown', I sketched the overall view of the patio along with the trellis from the sidewalk.

El Diablo Coffee Co. - Wooden Trellis at Patio
Later in the day, my family and I took a stroll around Green Lake to soak up the remaining sunlight of the day. My youngest daughter insisted on bringing her notebook with her. We took a break in front of The Bathhouse Theater and my daughter and I spent some quality time sketching together. It was a great way to end the weekend.

Green Lake - View East from The Bathhouse Theater

Father-Daughter quality time

Queen Anne and Aurora Avenue N.

The weather turned from yesterday's rain into a beautiful sunny Sunday in Seattle.  The resident's of Queen Anne were out in force at the many eatery's this Sunday morning.  I walked down to Boston Street and captured the scene of the Boston Barber Shop and the Bounty Kitchen.  This is one of the older commercial blocks off of Queen Anne Avenue that hasn't changed much in many years.  

Next I wanted to sketch one of the television towers that grace the top of the hill.  The bonus was that I also was able to draw the 5-Spot Cafe too.

After the meet up, I headed home and noticed that the Klose-In Motel had closed down and it looked like the site was going to be redeveloped.  Over the years I have loved the neon covered sign and had wanted to sketch it.  I decided that this might be one of the last opportunities.  Many of the older motels along Aurora Avenue have closed and their classic signs have disappeared.

Here is what the sign looks like at night when it was open.

Moon (Non-)Viewing

9/17/16 A cellist performs during Otsukimi at Japanese Garden.
Otsukimi (“moon viewing”) is the Japanese tradition of celebrating the autumn full moon with poetry, music and general festivities. On a warm, clear night, it must be nothing short of magical to gaze peacefully at the rising moon while listening to live cello music and haiku readings.

That warm, clear night, however, did not materialize for us yesterday at Seattle Japanese Garden, which annually hosts Otsukimi for the September Harvest Moon. We were lucky to have a brief reprieve from the rain and high winds that had battered us most of the day – just long enough to enjoy some of that cello music. By the time I started putting a little color on my sketch, it started spitting, and when I switched to my small Field Notes notebook, the spitting had turned to rain. Otsukimi revelers didn’t miss a beat; they just opened their umbrellas and pulled up their hoods.

You might wonder why we chose to go to Otsukimi on such a blustery night. The Japanese Garden starts selling tickets to the highly popular event a month ahead of the date, and it sells out almost immediately. We’ve been wanting to attend for years, but we were always either out of town or weren’t able to get tickets in time. Knowing we’d be in town this year, we pounced on them as soon as tickets were available. Of course, you can’t predict weather a month out, and late September is always iffy.

Ah, well. The clouds never parted long enough to reveal that elusive Harvest Moon, but we all knew it was shining up there somewhere.

At least our bento box dinners stayed dry!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

September Sunday Sketch Outing

Sunday, September 18
Upper Queen Anne
10:00 am - 12:30 pm

Sitting at the top of the highest named hill in Seattle, Queen Ann is treasure of views and commerce. We'll meet at Diablo Coffee, a funky Cuban coffeeshop with delicious cafe con leche and an outdoor covered patio. Across the street, Bethany Presbyterian is a stately structure for building lovers. A few blocks south is the iconic 5 Spot and a few more blocks is Kerry Park. If the weather is nice we may wind up there to take in the awesome view. 
meet at: 
Diablo Coffee 
1811 Queen Anne Ave N #101
Seattle, WA 98109

Outdoor Patio


No fees. 
All drawing skill levels welcome.
If you can't find us call or text Jane 360-402-4902

Monday, September 12, 2016

Sketching Bonanza

I quickly accepted an invitation to spend time in Chelan, a town three hours east of Seattle.  Never having been there, I was eager for a new sketching opportunity and happy to spend time relaxing. In Chelan, they call it Chelaxing.

We headed east choosing the picturesque route through alpine themed Leavenworth.  The drive did not disappoint. The winding highway moved along evergreen forests, over bridges spanning roiling rivers, and finally, into vast expanses of duff colored mountains and craggy cliffs.  In Chelan, vineyards and apple orchards lace the scenery with accents of green and give a base for the local economy.  We visited a few vineyards and had a great time tasting the fruit of the vine.  The apples were excellent too.  

Looking west, Devil’s Backbone Mountain massive size dwarfs communities built along the edges of the lake. 

Lake Chelan and Devil's Backbone Mountain.
Apple orchards and vineyards thrive along the shores of Lake Chelan.  A winery sits high on a hill east of poolside.  
Winery view from poolside

On the Lady of the Lake ferry, we cruised up to Stehekin, population 75, a wilderness settlement on the north end of Lake Chelan and the gateway to the North Cascades National Park. On the ferry, the panoramic views of the rugged mountains descending into the deep blue waters of Lake Chelan were otherworldly.
Interior of lower deck, Lady of the Lake Express

The south end Lake Chelan is busy with pleasure craft.  After a brief rain, I was the only one on the beach looking out at bobbing boats and the textures of tree bark, leaves, rocks and water.  Everything around the lake seems rougher, tougher and wilder.

South end of Lake Chelan