Two Years

WordPress tells me I registered 2 years ago 21 August.  Time flies when you’re having fun making ART!

I’ve been blogging about my sketching longer than that.  I just uploaded a lot of older posts transferred from Livejournal to WordPress on that day in 2012.

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Who knew?!

I certainly didn’t.  I know I’ve checked the Pentalic website but did not see this.  One of my favorite watercolor sketchbooks is the Pentalic Aqua 5×8 inches , which I’ve mentioned before.  (ooo…. that’s a good price at the link!).   I was in the University of Washington bookstore at the Tacoma campus today.  I saw a 3×5 inch version!

I’ve been buying up all the old style Moleskine pocket watercolor books I can find on sale (or with a coupon…. 50% off at Aaron Brothers!) because of Liz Steel’s review of the change that’s coming.  I use them in my tiny every-day-carry sketchkit that is always in my purse-like-Timbuk2-bag

The paper in the Pentalic Aqua is superior to Moleskine’s.  It’s 140 pound cold pressed watercolor.  Recently Jame Gurney posted that he contacted Pentalic and was told it is 100% cotton.

Compared to the Moleskine pocket watercolor book


It has more pages

This small version was $13 at the UW Tacoma bookstore.  UW Seattle is the only place in town to buy the 5×8 version but I’ve never noticed the 3×5 one there.

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Public institutions

Yesterday I did two drawings which I colored this morning.

First I went to document the renovation/construction of my local library.  It has now been gutted and all the walls are down.  It spans the local river so a net protects the river from construction debris.

This is the second in what I hope to be a series on this project.  The first was June 23.  I missed the one month spot but, as far as I can tell, it looked the same as it did yesterday.

Late in the afternoon I picked my husband up from work at the hospital.  I was parked in a little known spot in the back.  While I waited, I noticed this view which I thought looked like layers.

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Sketching Shilshoal Marina

Urban Sketchers Seattle met for our monthly sketch outing at Shilshoal Marina.  This is near Ballard, which is the center of past Scandinavian  immigrants in Seattle.  The Nordic Museum is only a few blocks away.  That explains the statue of Leif Erikson and the Rune Stones memorial around it.

I was one of several sketchers for whom Leif was a subject today.  I included the flag post to give it a sense of place, near the marina.

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do for my next sketch.  I knew I didn’t want to sketch the forest of boat masts.  Eventually, I found a bit of garden with a part of an old fog light.

Stillman & Birn Beta (7×7 spiral); Platinum Carbon Black ink in a Platinum Cool Pen; Daniel Smith Watercolors

I added in the crow on the stump as I was visited by a number of them, especially after I offered them a portion of my snack!  There was much calling (“hey, she’s giving us food; come and get it!”).  They did come surprisingly close but this was shot with the limit of the telephoto on my Canon G12.

Orna is a  visitor from Urban Sketchers Israel today!

As is usual, we met to share sketches but didn’t get a real group photo.  A couple people took a wide shot while we looked at sketches so these may show up on the blog.

All photos here.

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Gas Works park

Urban Sketchers Seattle Friday ad hoc sketch outing was at Gas Works Park.

With this outing, I’ve started my second Stilman & Birn spiral bound Beta sketchbook. I’m really liking it.  I don’t know what’s different, but I’m not getting the extreme curling I did when I first tried it. 

It rained steadily for most of the 1.5 hours drive it took me to reach Gas Works Park.  But it seemed to let up once there.  I decided to chance it and sketch the gas works.  I no sooner got most of the ink drawing done when it started to rain.  I later finished the color at home.

I moved inside to the shelter to sketch some of the colorful machinery.

Stillman & Birn Beta (7×7 spiral); Platinum Carbon Black ink in a Platinum Cool Pen; Daniel Smith Watercolors

The former exhauster-compressor building, now a children’s play barn, features a maze of brightly painted machinery.

These colorful tubes remind me of Google’s data center in The Dalles

We shared our sketches under shelter

and then had a group photo (one person, Zak, is missing as he had to leave early)

Thanks, Madeleine, for taking this photo.

More photos here.

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Las Vegas, part 4

Sunday 10 August 2014

We watched the closing ceremonies on the TV in the room.
Facts and figures:
Lots of charity…. the geeks are a generous lot:
$33,569 raised for Hackers for Charity (which provides hardware and education in Africa)
$114,000 + raised for the Electronic Frontier Foundation      (oh, and from one of the
presentations I watched:  Defending Privacy at the U.S. Border: A Guide for Travelers Carrying Digital Devices    )
DefCon Kids:  400 children participated in kids programming, 50% of whom were girls!

Sunday night we went to Cirque du Soleil’s Zarkana.  Again, I sketched the stage while we waited.  During the performance the theater was too dark and the action too fast for me to try to sketch!

Photos here.

“Only in Vegas” observations:
-Tablet video screen with ads at the sink in the casino restroom!
-On the Breakfast menu:  “O’Hare of the Dog” is a 24 oz Miller Lite (in a bag) and a side of bacon.
-Convenience store has personalized playing cards with a large selection of first names.

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Las Vegas, part 3

Saturday 9 August 2014

I discovered I could watch DefCon programming on the TV, steaming from the conference halls.  I watched a very interesting presentation about a volunteer group that works for security of medical devices and the “internet of things”.  Later I watched another program on security of electronic medical records “What the Doctor Ordered”.   I was able to be in the room for that presentation and did a sketch.

I later did a spot of homework for Sketchbook Skool.  In the hotel room, the only “collection” I could muster was some coins:

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Las Vegas, part 2

Friday 8 August 2014

Sketch of the other Rio hotel tower from our room on the 11th floor.

I took the free shuttle over to The Stip and then walked to the Bellagio.  IT-IS-TOO-HOT!!  I only did one sketch in the conservatory.  There was no place to sit.

I gave up and went back to the hotel and took a shower to cool down.  Then I added color to the sketch I’d started while waiting for the shuttle.  These are the towers of the Palms hotel.

That night we went to see Jay Leno at the Mirage.  I did a sketch of the stage.  I’d planned to add Jay in but the theater was too dark to see the page to draw him in!

Photos are here.

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Las Vegas part 1

Wed & Thur, 6 & 7 August 2014

The flight on Wednesday to Las Vegas was uneventful.  Though there were long lines at SeaTac, both for check in and security.  They moved quickly and we had time for breakfast before boarding.

On Thursday, I got up about 0530 on registration Thursday and went to stand in line for Don at about 0610.  DefCon does no pre-reg so everyone has to stand in line for a badge.  The earlier ones get the collectable, electronic badge.  Others get paper.  Don came down about 0745 and took over.  He finally had his badge by about 0910.

By 1000, the registration line was out the building and moving through the pool area, 4 wide, hundreds and hundreds of feet long.  In the end, I think 25,000 people

After he got his badge, we went to breakfast.  I did a quick sketch while we waited for our food.  We were at the Hash House A-Go-Go in the Rio.

Photos are here.
6 August
7 August 

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Cleaning Air Force One

Each year Bill brings a crew to clean Air Force One and the Concorde.  His company is and he and the crew VOLUNTEER their time to clean these historic air craft!

I was at the Museum of Flight for a noon presentation so I went over to the Air Park to see the action.

This is the same crew who cleaned the Electra before it was delivered. I met them on the day it was delivered when I sketched it on the flight line. 


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