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Monday, March 11: Bellevue Square

Sunday, February 18, 2018

US Bank Centre/City Centre Outing

I don't typically come to work on weekends. But deadline happens so there I was sitting at my desk on a Sunday morning. Fortunately this month's outing location happens to be at the City Centre/US Bank Centre in downtown Seattle, which is kitty-corner from where I work. I walked by and through this building almost daily. Never wanting to miss the opportunity to sketch, I sneaked out to take a break from work to let loose and be sketchy for a bit.

The three story atrium with its round rotunda has always fascinated me. I went straight to the southwest entry rotunda where 'The Jewel of Seattle' is hanging from the ceiling. My goal is to capture the entire height of the rotunda from the ground floor all the way to the ceiling, using the curving barrel distorted perspective. I realized quickly that I bit off more than I could chew. Standing from the second floor, I miscalculated the scale of the scene and angle of perspective from the get go. Knowing that I don't have much time since I have to go back to work soon, I decided to make do with what I have and follow the old mantra: “use your sketch to capture the essence of the space”. Disregarding accuracy, I used quick shapes, lines, and solids blacks to whip out a rough one below. As you can see, ellipses are my archenemies.
City Centre/US Bank Centre_Interior

For the next one, I wanted to do a scene with a bit more details. I decided to sketch one of the two column portals located on the ground floor's southern concourse. I am not really sure what these two portals are supposed to be, but they have just the right amount of details for me to challenge myself. With two sketches, I thought I was done for the day and decided to go back to work.

As I was taking a quick stretch between tasks, I stumbled upon a nice exterior view of the corner entry rotunda from the second floor window of my pod. Again not wanting to miss the opportunity to sketch, I decided to do another quick one while waiting for my files to save, using shapes to represent the major forms within the scene. Once I got home, I borrowed my daughter's white gel pen to add contrasting lines to the solid blacks in order to represent the window mullions. I think I am going to need my own white gel pen in my arsenal :).

City Centre/US Bank Centre_Exterior


  1. WONDERFUL sketches! The arch in your second sketch is a cast stone arch restored from the Music Box Theater which had been on this site in 1928. David C's office is in the building and he told me it is dedicated to Tony Callison, the founder of the firm where David works.

  2. Aaah great info. Thank you, Kate! I should update my posting accordingly.