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Thursday, September 11, 2014

This Weeks Art by Lynn Cohen

Excited and looking forward to the third class I will be taking in Sketchbook Skool.
I drew Danny Gregory talking about third semester called
"Storytelling". One can take any of the classes in any order they want.
Some I believe start this month and some in October.
Check it out at
I like to think that my blog tells a story ... the story of what I am doing in my life ...
For instance I drew these folks at a Starbucks late last week ...

... and then a couple of days later I drew at another Starbucks in our home town ... where I found these girls studying from books and laptops both!

A few days later found us at the bank where we had to wait a while to talk to a representative. These folks were waiting too. So I drew them. They were not together, as they appear in my drawing. I started with her, and she got up and left before I even got to her face ... then he sat down and I made him fit on my page making them look quite familiar with one another. Sometimes I do match making in my art journals.

I draw just about everywhere now. This day I was on the phone at my desk at work so I drew on a piece of copy paper and used the ink pen I found there to draw some of the things on my desk while I talked and listened on the phone.

Yesterday was the birthday of three of my grandchildren! Our grand daughter in Oregon, turned 21, and the twins turned ten. We had the good fortune to be able
to be invited to a family gathering here, starting with picking the kids up from their school in the afternoon and taking them to their house where we gave them our gifts. It was fun seeing them made happy with simple things like a glue gun! (I thought my grand daughter was going to become unglued over that gift she was so excited!) And ski gloves and playing cards and art and maze books. They are easy to please.

After they opened their gifts they had to finish their homework, which gave me a good opportunity to draw them. They are getting so grown up ... we remember back to when they were born pre-maturely, and taken from their mom, my daughter, by Caesarian birth, weighting a mere 2 pounds (him) and 3 pounds (her) respectfully. Now they are fully formed, bright, happy, talented kids who are stars in so many ways!
Such joy they give us as grandparents. We ended the evening with a lovely dinner out at a Japanese restaurant, the kids choice; and later back at their house a home made German Chocolate cake made by their dad, that looked good, but we just watched them eat it.

Happy Paint Party Friday! Thanks for your visits to my blog. Your visits and comments warm my heart more than I can say.

You might also enjoy peeking in at my other blog, Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens. A place where everyone is welcome to join in the fun drawing to a theme that changes every two weeks.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

My Week in Art

Friendships are everything to me, and I have made some really great friendships since starting Sketchbook Skool. Susanne lives in Canada and she drew an awesome portrait of me riding a Vespa in Paris! So I drew her standing by a Frida painting in Mexico!

These flowers are mementos of bouquets my best friend from childhood, Patty, gave me last year.
We are drawing flowers this week and next at Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens! So it was fitting to do these and my choices evoked lots of great memories for me of my dear friend.

We are in readiness for a trip of a lifetime, planning to pack small, as we will be walking a lot so will be carrying everything on our backs. I am trying to keep this to a minimum of clothing and art supplies, and am averaging around 18 pounds right now.

My dear husband is reading travel books up the kazoo! I drew some of them to color when I am on the plane!
Packing is a big deal when wanting to travel light. Just how few clothes can one get by on?
I have narrowed it down and narrowed it down again.
My 18 lbs. contains toiletries (tiny containers of shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer, (DH can pack the deodorant), tiny tube of tooth paste, manual toothbrush, hair brush;
All clothing is packed in three small cloth cubes, rolled for optimal space saving.
It all fits in one 40L backpack.
 Clothing consists of: Pants: two pairs of nylon long pants with zip off legs, (one to wear, one to pack. They wash and dry quickly); One pair of outer waterproof pants for rain; one pair of black tights. Jackets: One thin, lightweight down jacket with a stuff bag; One Polypropalene rain jacket with hood with a zip in pocket pouch; 2  long sleeved hoodies of light wt. materials; one long sleeved T-shirt; one blouse Polypropalene wash and wear. One set of long johns for warmth and to sleep in; three pairs of nylon underpants, three pairs of sox. One pair of Mary Jane Keen dress shoes; and hiking boots to wear. Camera, art supplies. Important papers, $, etc.
It gives me peace of mind to know our house will be being house sat, as well as our cat.
Our house sitter will be home around the clock too!
I think we are almost ready!
Work out, get in condition to walk, and walk and walk carrying my
worldly belongings on my back!
I can do it!
I can!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

A Travel Story by Lynn Cohen

A week ago we took a drive to Portland, Oregon to visit family.
(My son, his wife, and his kids)
 We drive out 505 and for a while there's nothing to draw but the cars and trucks in front of us.

 It gets more exciting when we reach Mt. Shasta and Lake Shasta. There was a little bit of snow, not much, on top and the lake was surprisingly and distressingly low this year.

Our first stop was Ashland, Oregon where we met up with my friend, Elizabeth Flanagan, who I met in Sketchbook Skool. This was our second meet up. We met at the same Sesame Restaurant and ate the same Imperial Salad. We drew each other on card stock and then drew each other again so we could both go home with a portrait of our selves and the other.

Elizabeth is so much fun. We laughed and drew and drew and laughed and ate and talked and drew some more.
It was hard to say goodbye. But we know we'll do this again!
Oh, and we were both wearing our T-shirts with Sketchbook Skool logos!!! You can get them on Zazzle!

We spent our first night in Eugene, OR where we slept at the Motel Six. Got there in time to get a quick dinner and then crawl into bed and get ready for the second leg of our trip to Portland the next morning!

The next morning we had breakfast at Starbucks. They are now serving Whole Grain Oatmeal made with Steel Oats and Old fashioned oatmeal mixed, nuts and seeds, and FRESH Organic blueberries.
It was so good. DH got his coffee and an egg and turkey bacon on a roll of some sort.
In the morning in  Eugene, Oregon  we always stopped at Cabela's, the outdoors store. It's a good place for a pit stop, to walk around, stretch our legs and shop! I found an awesome bright eggplant purple rain jacket made out of polypropylene and it's as light as a feather. But guaranteed to keep me dry and warm!

I also got some polypropylene long johns that are guaranteed to keep me warm under my clothing.
(just in case I run into intrepid weather anywhere this fall and winter) OH and a pair of kids size 4 shower shoes!

Finally we arrived in Portland! The prize is lots and lots of time with our little, just turned three, grand daughter, Allie. She is getting more adorable by the minute. Her vocabulary and ability to string meaningful sentences together, to carry on a conversation, and to tell us what to do is daunting!

Allie loved drawing with me and then she got into telling me who to draw! And I did!
Sometimes she helped, as you can see here; and sometimes she drew on her own paper creating full pages of awesome art of her own. I gave her two new sketch pads and a water brush and new markers.

She told me to draw Papa drinking his coffee and reading his book ...

She told me to draw her big sister, Kaeli, who was filling out forms for a house rental.

When we moved outside to eat our breakfasts on the porch she told me to draw Michael and Kaeli, then her mom and her. I did.

The next day she told me to draw  her with her belly button showing ... I did!
Then she told me to draw myself ... and I did!

The next day she told me to draw her dad ... so I did.

And to draw her again, and I did! She told me to use markers and I did on her drawing.

The next day she told me to draw Matt Daly and Leslie, friends of her parents, who were visiting from Seattle. They came down in a rented red VW camper van and slept in the driveway.

And finally, on our almost last day there, she told me to draw Papa again! So I did.

We finally had to say good bye as hard as that was. We decided to drive through Crater Lake.
While stopped there I thought I might draw the scene in front of me. It's always absolutely breathtakingly beautiful. I was washed with thoughts of "No way can I do this place justice!" and then people who were walking by seemed to be making remarks about my drawing, and the critical voice in my head turned them into negative quips. I was starting to have an emotional "I can't do this!" melt down. So I just did a quick pen sketch.

And then
I did an even briefer sketch of the island in the lake and the water around it and the hills surrounding it. And retreated to the car.

I really did a number on myself, and was truly bummed out. So I quickly slapped some paint on the second drawing and shut my book. It wasn't until I got home that I took them out again and used water soluble colored pencils and water brush and watercolors and more ink pen to get these two drawings. Now I can look at them outlined darker with more ink and say I like them both very much and I am a good artist! But for a while there it was touch and go ...

... Do you have a monkey like this that sometimes says you aren't good enough? How do you shoo it away when that happens?

I reached out to my peers in Sketchbook Skool and got lots of reassurance and support. That group is worth it's weight in gold! I just signed up for the third semester called "Story Telling". I think I just told you a story so I may be a bit ahead of the game. Anyone can sign up for any one of the three semesters: "Beginning", "Seeing" and/or "Story Telling". The teachers change each semester, Four new ones and two who repeat (Danny Gregory and Koosje Koene) the other teachers hail from all over the globe. The students number over 3000 now and also are from all over the world. We meet up in a Facebook community and share our art and inspiration and encouragement, tools, advice, friendships, etc. etc. etc. Look into it if interested @

Happy Paint Party Friday! And remember to hop over to see what we are posting at Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens!

Thanks for stopping by and leaving your comments,
as they mean the world to me!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

"Drawing Every Day Just Keeps Getting Better & Better", Lynn Cohen

The second semester of Sketchbook Skool came to an end. I'll be signing up for the Third semester (of six weeks/six teachers) in September and it starts October 3rd. Anyone can sign up for any of the three semesters I wish to then or in any multiples. But my recommendation would be to do one at a time just because they are a bit labor and time consuming. And it's all fun.

Meanwhile, at my other Blog, "Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens" we are drawing Selfies this week and then Drawing Each Other as well. This is my fun drawing of fellow blogger, Ann Hyde and her wonderful dog William. I've drawn William before now. I think he is the cutest thing!

And again, between semesters in Sketchbook Skool we hang out and play in the Facebook Playground. We assign "Klass Klown" status to two Klassmates who in turn come up with an idea of a theme to draw to for all of us for the week. At the end of the week they in turn appoint two more Klassmates to take over the task and another theme is dreamt up for another week of drawing.

This week's challenge was to draw things that go ...
First I drew my treadmill, as I get on it and go almost every morning ...

Then I drew these people who GO to Starbucks and captured them all standing in line waiting to order their drinks and eats on a Sunday morning.

Also there were these two young women who I believe were studying, while sharing an iPod and I imagine listening to music.

And I guessed this pair to be a brother and sister looking at some techie device perhaps playing a game, while their dad was getting his morning java.

And lastly on that day, I started to draw a woman who got up and left after I only had the outline of her face and hair. So I adlibbed and made up the rest of her. I colored these there with colored pencils and Tom Bow pens. Six months ago I never would have dreamed to color in a public place. Two years ago I wouldn't have dreamed of drawing in a public place. Now I do both.

Back home I drew this part of a  truck we saw in Alameda, CA and took a photo of as my husband was enamored with the old 1949 Dodge pickup. I don't know why but I enjoy drawing old trucks. You know the one in my header already.

And then the next day I drew it again in all it's glory!

Here's another Selfie I did for Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens!

And this one is also for that blog of two more PPP&P artists. You know everyone is invited to draw there. Just leave me your email address and I will send you an invite. We change challenges every two weeks. You can draw as often as you wish.

Happy Paint Party Friday this week!

The owl I wrote about a week or so ago is doing well and will be released back into the wild soon.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Last Week of Second Semester at Sketchbook Skool

I did one more painting for Cathy Johnson's class. These are the redwood trees in our back yard. The lesson was to mix paint to make different greens, I think I did more mixing of browns and yellows!
This started with a pencil sketch, something I don't normally do.

Liz Steel was the teacher in this the sixth week and final week of SBS for now. I believe a third semester will begin sometime in October TBA. Liz is obsessed with tea and drawing tea cups. She is also an architect and gave us great tips on how to draw thumb nail sketches first before starting a larger project. You'll see that further down here. I drew Liz while she spoke about her art journals (over 100 she's filled in the past seven years) on her teaching video.

I posted more fine china last week I'd done before her class started. This week I drew these "Toby Jugs" that my mother collected and I acquired after her death. They have wonderful expressions. I was able to get a "portrait" into a cup!

Then I started using her architect design model of thumb nail sketches before drawing this Lenox china box of my mothers too. I drew the little University of California mascot bear that resides inside it that was hers too. She went there one year before the Great Depression caused her to have to quit and go to work.

Finally, Liz had us drawing buildings and I went outside and drew my house again from a new angle this time. It really did help to do the thumb nails first.

Lastly I have started my next travel journal. It's fun getting ready. I can't say exactly when I'll be gone, but hopefully I'll be able to stay in touch and you won't even notice!

An update on the Barn Owl we rescued a week or so ago: DH called the Wild Life Center and learned that the owl was doing really well, had gained weight and they thought that this coming week she would be released back into the wild.

Have a creative week. I'll be posting on Paint Party Friday. Be sure to visit the other wonderful artists there via the icon on my side bar. Also come see us at Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens and join in the fun of drawing to a new theme every two weeks. Tomorrow or the next day we start drawing SELFIES!!!
That should be fun.