Thursday, February 23, 2012


This is the latest installment from my watercolor class with David R. Becker. We paint from photos, not my favorite thing to do but I'm learning a lot. I chose this photo because of the high contrast and I love the sneakers and tutu combo. It says to me "Oh the places she'll go!" Also, I think the watercolor shows that it may be possible to teach an old dog new tricks!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Midwest: One Drawing at a Time

Urban Sketchers is a network of artists from around the world who work to encourage on location sketching and to show the world "one drawing at a time". Now Kate (Cathy) Johnson, artist and author, has started the Midwest chapter of the group. I've added my sketches to the USK flickr group for a while and I'm excited to be a correspondent to the Urban Sketcher - Midwest blog!

In my Chicago neighborhood there are five Starbucks in a five block radius. I've visited and sketched in them all. This sketch was done in one of them during a pit stop the middle of a very busy week. On the USK – Midwest blog I'll be sharing my favorite Chicago places as well as some of the  more mundane spots. I'm also looking forward to seeing my fellow contributors' "midwest". I hope you'll stop by Urban Sketchers – Midwest and enjoy the view!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Working on It

These are two practice watercolors. I'm working on control of the medium but still trying to give up control at the same time. They're over worked and I have a very long way to go. Thanks to a class with David R. Becker, I'm enjoying the trip .

Speaking of which- the paintings are done from photos from a trip to Barcelona in 2010. The top one is the old Cathedral in the Gothic Quarter and the one below it is in Antoni Gaudi's Sagrada Familia.  It struck me how this cathedral builder is a living link to those nameless artists who labored centuries ago. I'm also reminded of the book Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett – a great read.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Everyday Heroes

It was three years ago today that Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago almost burned down, again. The Cathedral is entwined with the history of the city from gangster murders to papal visits. If it wasn't for the brave firemen, the first responders, who answered the call early that morning, the Cathedral would have been leveled to the ground just as it was in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.  They say they were just doing their job-in my book that makes them heroes not just on February 4, 2009 but everyday.

This sketch is a little (?) chaotic but that reflects the scene. It was dark, bitter cold and chaotic.