Gasworks Park

Though it was predicted, our sketch outing at Gasworks Park yesterday morning escaped the rain we had last time we visited.  In our last summer outing we had 7 sketchers, a smaller group than has been usual.  Perhaps it was the threat of rain.

Michele and I sketched the gasworks from atop Kite Hill.

A bee investigated my palette.  No,  I’m not using the honey based M. Graham
paints, just Daniel Smith!

I then wandered the park but didn’t do another sketch as there didn’t seem to be time.

Sharing sketches:

I positioned our group photo with a view of the Seattle skyline and Space Needle rather than of the Gasworks.  (L to R:   Kate, Gloria, Susan H, Susan M, Suzanne, Michele, Gwen)

Just Michele and I went to lunch at Ivar’s (though Gloria would have joined us if we’d made up our mind in time!  Sorry, Gloria…we looked for you there!).  We sat on the patio
and watched a wondrous variety of floating craft pass by.  I sketched a small bridge.

Lots of photos from around the park are here.

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I went to AFK Drink and Draw last night for the first time in weeks.  We had a wonderful model in Pixie Dash!

This is my favorite from the evening:

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Made today

It was a nice day for sketching.  But I have a lot of other projects waiting.  So I stayed in to make a number of items.

First up, elastic button bracelets.  I have a lot of buttons left from other projects.  This is an idea I got from another member of Art Abandonment group.  This one is my personal edelweiss elastic button bracelet.  In the SCA, as a Viscountess of Drachenwald, I am also a Lady of the Edelweiss.  (see Order of the Edelweiss, here).  That’s one reason I’m partial to the Edelweiss.

These are made to be abandoned.

A fabric faux-dori covers a pocket sized notebook.

Glass paperweights using my photos and one copyright free art, 2 inches in diameter.  These are also for abandonment.

Fabric watchband, the same fabric as the notebook cover.


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Gemini 5 exhibit

Museum of Flight PR staff asked to use my Astronaut on the Town sketches to promote the last few days of the project.  I took over the files and met briefly.  Look for them on their various social media accounts.

While there I stopped to sketch the Gemini 5 exhibit, celebrating the 50th anniversary this week of the historic 8 day flight.  The mission set out to answer thee question, “Can astronauts survive in space long enough to make it to the Moon and back”.  Why, yes they can!

some bits of photo collage included.

Included in the sketch:

Indian Motorcycle Cap belonged to Charles “Pete” Conrad.  When he was a boy, Conrad’s first vehicle was an old Indian motorcycle given to him by his cousin.  He carried his live for “the ride” into his aviation and later his astronaut career.

Goodrich Gemini Spacsuit gloves manufactured with the David Clark Copany’s Gx2 spacesuits used in Project Gemini

Gemini reentry module on display; 1/4 scale

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Stab Journal

On Saturday morning I attended a demo at Daniel Smith by Janice Berkebile on making Stab Journals.   She’ll do a one day workshop next month (Sept 18).    As of  Saturday afternoon, there was still space available in the workshop.  I’m already registered.  Janice’s workshops and demos are a lot of fun… and you come away from the workshop having made a very nice book!

Various supplies

Japanese punch; different sized bits can be installed.  It’s a very clever tool that I do think I need to get.

Janice using a dremel to drill holes through the covers and pages. Use a 18 inch bit.  Smell, what smell?

finished journal

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Stonehouse gone wrong

Started the day with breakfast back at the Stonehouse Bakery.  The puff pastry sausage scramble was delicious and the pastry nice and flakey.

Some more photos from inside are here.

I stayed to do a sketch.  I really messed it up.  I haven’t done that in a long time.  Edge of building and roof didn’t match up right.  I did not see it while I was drawing.  It wasn’t until hours later when I looked at it again at home that I realized how horribly wrong it had gone!

I made an attempt to fix it.  It now looks simply wonky.   I like this place so much I will likely make another sketch, being mindful to look more closely!

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Frank Eber demo

Frank Eber is in town to offer a workshop.  Yesterday he did a demo late in the afternoon at Daniel Smith:  Atmospheric Landscapes in Watercolor.

He said he didn’t like to talk about himself so he talked about his kit.

We did get a bit of personal information out of him.  He is originally from Nuremberg, Germany.  He lived many years in LA and now lives in a rural area not too far from the California central coast,  San Luis Obispo and Morro Bay.  Beautiful country.  Other than here, Morro Bay is one of the few other places I’d like to live  (York, England and Garmisch-Partinkirchen, Germany being the other two!).

Anyway…   He uses squirrel and synthetic brushes. He uses rounds exclusively and likes Ascoda.  He doesn’t find Kolinsky sables worth the money as they wear out quickly.  His palette is a large metal one made by Holbein.

Daniel Smith gave us a dot sampler of the DS watercolors in his palette, less Verona Gold Ochre.

He demonstrated how he does light washes as an under-painting.  Then he does successively darker washes to add detail.

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Bradner Garden and more

Yesterday was a fabulous day out.  I started with the Seattle Urban Sketchers Friday ad hoc outing.

Bradner Gardens Park was such a wonderful find!  It’s partly park and mostly P Patch.

There are so many whimsical sculptures.  I had to incorporate many of them in one wide spread.  The scare crows were so unusual!

I was not so happy with my second sketch, a view of the city in the distance.

We shared our sketches and had a group photo.


I ate my lunch on the picnic table under the shelter and then stayed to make more photos.  There are about 60 just of the garden!  Find them all here.

I made three more stops on my way home.  First was the new PCC Market in Columbia City.  Then a new restaurant opened in an old building. Finally, I went to a late afternoon demo at Daniel Smith.  See the next two blog posts about those!

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Van Leirop Garden Market

Tacoma Urban Sketchers Wednesday outing was to Van Leirop Garden Market in Sumner.  It’s a delightful small garden shop.  They were very gracious in hosting us today.


At least one person left before the photo.  So the group was 18-20 people today.  Not bad for a Wednesday morning.

Sharing sketches:

A group of us shared a delightful lunch at Sorci’s Italian Cafe next door.  I gave them a half hour “warning” and they did a good job serving us.  The food was delicious and the company excellent.  There were many good conversations and ideas shared.

There are a few more photos here.

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Crafts of the Past

Each weekend from June through September, Fort Nisqually offers Crafts of the Past.  A different artist is “in-residence” at the Fort with displays and demonstrations of their work. Most will also offer visitors the opportunity to try their hand at the specific art

This was my weekend. 

–photo by their mother.  The young boy on the left was my most enthusiastic participant!

I had my period watercolor sketching kit on display and I also worked on a sketch during each day.  I had modern watercolors for visitors to use.  A couple adults participated but it was mostly enthusiastic children who wanted to give it a try.  I taught a wet-in-wet technique in which they thoroughly wet the paper and then dropped in color.  As the color “magically” spread across the paper, there were a few oooo’s and ahhhh’s of surprise.

I very much enjoyed the experience.  I’ve only been a volunteer for about a year and have only been interpreting for a few months.  I would definitely do this again next year.

To that end, I had a few lessons learned.  The three palettes of watercolors were enough but I needed 2 jugs of water. I need more paper and for this very wet technique, it should be 140# paper.    It would be best to teach the youngest children how to use a brush. Fortunately, I had student-quality brushes as they really took a beating.  The young ones used them like crayons, pressing very hard into the paper.  Do not teach them the splatter technique!  They are very vigorous and there was nearly paint on Elizabeth’s new white
collar which she’d left on the table with the plan to work on embroidery.  Also, encourage others not to leave anything on the table that can’t stand getting paint on it.  Staff in the Fort shop quickly learned to ask children to leave their still-wet painting on a paper towel at the front counter so as not to get paint on the shop goods.

I did one sketch each day from my vantage point on the veranda of the Factor’s house.

Before opening, I wandered the period garden.


Giant Musselburgh Leek c. 1834

All the photos are here

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