Saturday, August 31, 2013

Last Of The Cabin Drawings - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of a boy jumping into a lake
We briefly visited the beach in Osage. The recent record heat caused large quantities of goose poop to float to the surface. I waded out slightly and discovered it was like standing in a green soup filled with diarrhea. Normally the lake is pristine but yuk...

A young boy kept leaping off the diving platform into the little floating clumps, screaming "I'm going to die!"

A dad was digging a new shoreline and commented to his daughter that he preferred duck poop to goose poop. He must have been a connoisseur.
ink drawing of a barn and outbuilding that are falling down
I started drawing this barn shortly before the rain began. The barn looks like it has a few storms left in it but the other building might not support a wet, misplaced duck. It's a good thing they were all busy pooping in Osage.

It was fun to get out and draw but I should have chosen a watercolor journal since this paper buckled under anything other than a light touch of watercolors. A smart person would have switched books but sometimes I'm more stubborn than smart. My timing wasn't the best since I wanted to do more urban subjects but most of the month I was in the suburbs or 20 miles from the nearest small town.

I was disappointed I didn't go to the State Fair Sketching event but 97 degrees with a 105 dew point didn't seem like fun. Now that I know about it, I'll try to go next year.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Cabin Drawings - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of a bluebird house
Bluebird house in the pine woods. No one wants to nest here since it's too close to the woods.

I tried a Pigma Micron Brush pen
ink drawing of wood pile
One of the wood piles at the cabin along with some newly felled trees.

Flexible nib fountain pen with Carbon Black ink.
ink drawing of a turkey vulture flying over a swamp
Turkey vulture flying over the swamp; he had six more friends who showed up later.

Pigma Micron pen 01

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Lamp Post Anoka Minnesota - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of a lamp post and hanging flowers
We haven't had rain in 3 weeks so I was a little surprised when it started sprinkling. I headed towards home and the rain stopped; I think it was so hot out that it evaporated on the way down.

A nearby major highway is being worked on so the congestion at rush hour plus another 12 or so hours per day is a little horrific; I was happy to escape by driving the back roads.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Abandoned Grain Silos In Anoka Minnesota - Urban Sketching

Abandoned Grain Silos In Anoka Minnesota ink and Watercolor Drawing
These neat old silos are a few blocks off main street in Anoka, Minnesota. I drove down to draw them at dusk and noticed numerous people on bikes coming out from behind them.

Despite the record heat and humidity we ventured out this morning to explore them. How did I not know these delightful trails existed? I can barely wait to come back when the air is not so heavy.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Wild Turkey In Minneapolis - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of a turkey from an artist journal
I was driving down a Minneapolis street and spotted a huge turkey standing along the sidewalk. He was busy calling his friends so I pulled over to do a quick sketch.

I didn't want to annoy him so I sat in the car and we watched each other. I had wanted to participate in a Urban Drawing group at the State Fair but the 100 degree weather changed my mind; I guess I was destined to draw livestock today.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Rural Minnesota Town Hall - Urban Sketching

drawing of a rural Minnesota town hall in a corn field
I think the old town hall is in Dayton, Minnesota; but it's at the crossroads of "nowhere" and "where am I" so I can't be certain.

It's on a tiny lot that was begrudgingly annexed from a corn field. The gravel road is so close to the steps they don't need a sidewalk.

It's too hot for mosquitoes (100 degrees) but the horseflies are very cranky.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Gathering Driftwood On The Beach In Duluth, Minnesota - Urban Sketching

artist journal drawing of the beach in Duluth Minnesota
We went to Duluth to gather driftwood along Lake Superior.

Lake Superior is the only place in Minnesota you can almost imagine that you're at the ocean.
driftwood log in Duluth Minnesota
This tree was a very handy and welcome place to sit and sketch.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Martin House Taken Over By Squirrels Ink Drawing - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of a martin house
This birdhouse used to be filled with happy birds until the neighborhood changed. Squirrels made the holes bigger and moved in.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Colored Pencil Drawing U of M Alcove - Urban Sketching

colored pencil drawing of a tree on a paper bag
I drove my daughter to campus to pick up a book but the roads were all closed. I ended up parking behind a building, surrounded by construction zones.

I drew this on a paper bag with colored pencils, that will teach me not to have drawing equipment with me.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

MN State Fair - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of a ticket booth
I'll be sketching at the State Fair with a local urban sketcher group on the 27th.

I had made several of these empty books from single sheets of watercolor paper and I wanted to field test it before bringing them to the fair. When I'm done, I'll bind the mini books together.

The pages are sturdy enough to draw while standing and compact enough to use in crowded situations.

If you make a book like this you need to find watercolor paper that won't crack when folded, a bone folder makes the process easier.

book made from a sheet of watercolor paper
It seemed fitting to start with an empty ticket booth. The streets around the state fair are starting to be blocked off and the area is gearing up for the great Minnesota Get Together. I know it's sacrilegious to some but I've never been a fan of the fair; this should be fun.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Blockaded Road - Urban Sketching

artist journal ink drawing of a blockaded road
I was so annoyed having to walk my bike through the Toad Lake neighborhood blockade I stopped to sketch it.

It reminds me of the Berlin Wall and doesn't belong on a pleasant lake road.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Bird Feeder Burgled By A Raccoon - Urban Sketching

artist journal ink drawing of a bird feeder emptied by a raccoon
Every time we go to the cabin the bird feeder is tilted and empty. I can't blame the raccoon since the bird seed looks like something I would buy at the food co-op.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Hans Bakery in Anoka Minnesota - Urban Sketching

artist journal drawing of hans bakery in anoka mn
This local landmark has been closed for quite awhile but they had excellent Beehives.

Frisky's has also been closed for quite awhile but the name amuses me.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Grove Lake Pelican Rapids - Urban Sketching

drawing of Grove lake

I went to Pelican Rapids before going to visit Laurie at Grove Lake. All the businesses had colorful painted chairs outside the shops. The center of town is showcased with a giant Pelican.

Grove Lake is filled with cut trees a few feet off shore, they reminded me of piers but I doubt that was the intention. The center has small islands of dead trees.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Abandoned Speed Boat Filled with Flowers - Urban Sketching

artist journal ink drawing of a speed boat that was filled with flowers
This boat was left when we bought the cabin so we painted it blue, filled it with dirt and planted Sedum.

My father called it the HMS Sailnomore.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Snakes in a Cabin - Urban Sketching

artist journal ink drawing of garter snake hiding spots
The goofy snakes kept dropping on me from the door, hid under the door glaring at me and fell off the screen door. The final straw was going inside my Croc.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Anoka Grain and Feed - Urban Sketching

artist journal ink drawing Anoka Grain and Feed
We used to come here for water softener salt and to look at the drawers of baby chicks.

The color was a failed experiment with water soluble color pencils.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Anoka County Asylum - Urban Sketching

artist journal ink drawing of the Anoka County Asylum
Anoka is the Halloween Capital of the world and I find the campus a little creepy. The buildings would make great condos but I don't think you could give the space enough positive energy. There was a lot of misery here over the years but the architecture is great.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

River Bend Park Drawing - Urban Sketching

River Bend Park Drawing

It was a lovely spot and I would have stayed there longer but the child with the lure caught in the tree over my head decided to break the branch to free it.


The leaf cutouts were made from a park map that we found as we escaped the goofy fishermen.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Caponi Art Park - Urban Sketching

Caponi Art Park - Urban Sketching

The park has numerous paths through the woods and we watched a Flamenco dancing demonstration.

Micron pen and Prang school watercolors.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Abstract Woodpile - Urban Sketching

Abstract Woodpile - Urban Sketching

I drew the woodpile at the cabin with Sharpie markers; filling in the negative space.

I was going to watercolor the logs in a Kandinsky style but I put it into Illustrator instead.

I did a live trace and colored the logs with the blob brush.

Monday, August 5, 2013

The Ghost of a Tire Swing - Urban Sketching

ink drawing of an old house with a bare, dead tree.

I put the dog on a leash and we walked out to do some sketching.

My poor 5 pound dog was an intoxicating attraction to the local hounds. We ended up coming back in the Jeep and drew this from the front seat.

Grandma's house has sat empty for years and it should be torn down. The crooked chimney is actually there and it's badly sagging inside and out.

I used to sit in the tire swing and watch Grandpa chopping wood, hoping for one of the uncles to come by and give me a push. Grandma always yelled at them not to push me so high but no one listened.

The page has scratch marks from Buffy becoming jealous and hopping onto to the drawing while I worked. I used a Micron pen for the drawing and a Sharpie to fill in the lines later. A Sharpie is too smelly to use inside a car.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Log Cabin in the Woods - Urban Sketching

log cabin in the woods ink drawing

I had a very pleasant time sitting on a glider swing watching the birds and dragon flies while drawing a little corner of our world.

I used a flexible nib fountain pen with Carbon Black ink.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Doe at Dawn - Urban Sketching

doe in the woods artist journal drawing
I love when deer drop by to visit the cabin.

The little structure is the wood pile for wood that still needs splitting.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Art Car Parade - Urban Sketching

artist journal page with art car parade drawing

The art car parade traveled around beautiful Lake Harriet.

I sketched the vehicles in pencil and inked them in later with a Pigma Micron marker. I was a little surprised how hard the floats were to draw quickly since I'm not a car person. The shape of the dragonfly bike was delightful.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Tall Ships in Duluth - Urban Sketching

artist journal page - ink drawing of duluth trip

I spend too much time in front of a computer so this month I'll get out and about to do urban sketching in my artist journal.

I used to hop on my bike and draw in different locations every day, I'm not certain how I got out of the practice; I think life gets in the way sometimes.

This page was done with a Pigma Micron pen which was a lot tidier than the Crow Quill India ink dip pen I used to use. I was with my family so I haven't taken time to add color yet. They always say don't rush, but I know they are patiently waiting for me, so I feel rushed.