Goodbye April, Hello May

What happened to the month of April?! Oh well, here’s a catch up post of my sketching endeavors over the past month or so:

Egret - Water

A sketch to practice drawing/painting water inspired by a photo I took on a  trip in Florida.

Hiking in Nevada (tree sketch)

A sketch to practice drawing trees inspired by a photo I took on a trip to Las Vegas.

Ink Blots

A new semester of Sketchbook Skool started! This assignment had us turn random ink blots into something from our imagination. 

Twingley HW

This assignment had us turn our weekly sketches into a collage. 

Blind contours 1

The second week of klass had us practicing blind contour portrait sketches…very tricky!

Blind contours 2

More blind contour portraits. 

Siqua Big Head

This assignment had us draw a portrait sketch with a big head & a small body. I had so much fun drawing my dog Siqua!


Here’s one of my husband which started as a big head portrait but turned into a regular portrait, oh well. I stuck to the teacher’s color scheme of yellow ochre, alizarin crimson, & cerulean blue (which was my substitute since I didn’t have prussian blue). It was really tough to only use 3 colors & I was panicking about half way through, but I kept pressing on & I’m really happy with the result! I think this is my favorite portrait sketch ever. 🙂

Well, that’s a wrap until next time!


Sketchbook Tour #1

I love flipping back through my sketches, observing my progress, & reminiscing over the memories captured. I hope you enjoy this little “tour” of my first completed sketchbook!

Off the Beaten Path

If you’re anything like me, the thought of urban sketching gives you a little twinge in your stomach. Where will I go? What will I sketch? Will people notice me sketching? What will they think? Thanks to Sketchbook Skool that twinge in my stomach is starting to get weaker over time.

Here’s a little story about a recent urban sketching experience I had to fulfill an assignment for Sketchbook Skool.

Assignment: Do an urban sketch with a strong focal point & minimal color.

I was on the road coming back from a video shoot for work & decided to go on a little lunch adventure. I drove right past all of the fast food chains on the highway & took the exit for Circleville, Ohio. I’ve only been there once or twice for their famous annual pumpkin festival. I had a tasty tuna salad croissant sandwich & some coffee at a charming little place called Scioto Valley Coffee while I did a quick sketch of the view out of the window.

Scioto Valley Coffee Sketch

Share your favorite urban sketching adventure in the comments!

Materials used:

  • New sketchbook I got for Christmas from my mom 🙂 (Artist’s Loft brand 6in x 8in)
  • Faber-Castell PITT artist pens (XS & S)
  • Winsor & Newton watercolors
  • Pentel waterbrushes

Sketchy Selfies

The Sketchbook Skool Bootkamp course included several selfie assignments. These assignments were challenging & caused me to ponder the role of self portraits in art history, the modern selfie phenomenon, & the differences between sketched selfies & ones snapped in a jiffy with a cell phone.

Some selfie tidbits:

“Although self-portraits have been made by artists since the earliest times, it is not until the Early Renaissance in the mid-15th century that artists can be frequently identified depicting themselves as either the main subject, or as important characters in their work.” (Wikipedia)

“Your model for self portraits is the most patient one ever, and won’t be offended by the results. Unless you have a split personality, but that’s a whole different problem.” (Koosje Koene from Sketchbook Skool Seeing Lesson 2.4)

“Rather than dismissing the trend as a side effect of digital culture or a sad form of exhibitionism, maybe we’re better off seeing selfies for what they are at their best — a kind of visual diary, a way to mark our short existence and hold it up to others as proof that we were here. The rest, of course, is open to interpretation.”  (Jenna Wortham, The New York Times)

Personally, having done both, I think drawn selfies are much more enlightening than photographed selfies.

Fast & Slow Selfie

Assignment: Paint a selfie with watercolor in 60 seconds, then sketch over it with pen slowly to add details (30 mins).

Selfie of Fast & Slow Selfie

Taking a selfie of my fast & slow selfie.

Continual line selfie

Assignment: Draw a continual line selfie (AKA – Don’t pick up your pen).

Memory & Imagination Selfies

Left: Selfie drawn from memory (no mirrors or photos allowed). First sketch with my Sheaffer fountain pen!

Right: Used my reflection in the mirror as a reference & added the buttons for the imaginative element since my dad always told me that I had a little button nose & a little button chin.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about selfies!