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Monday, October 27, 2014

Busy Week in Art and Life

Well, Art seems to be my life!
This past weekend we went to spend one night at my daughters so we could take our grand daughter to her soccer game on Saturday morning. Actually the ice cream was AFTER the game; Yael likes to draw me and me her so we did this while we were there (again) I think we've been doing this since she was six. She's ten now.
(In fact she drew the photo of me in my self published book you can see on the sidebar when she was seven)

The game was exciting. It ended in a tie score. Yael made the one goal for her team and blocked the last goal attempted by the other team at the end of the game! She is #20. I was attempting to draw action shots, which isn't an easy task, as the running is short lived and the standing around is much longer!

Earlier in the same week we went to Stockton to visit uncle Harry. He enjoyed looking at photos and my art done in Europe the past month! It's always a pleasure to feel like we are brightening his day, as he is still grieving the loss of his younger sister and wife. But he was in pretty good spirits in spite of all that.


 This past weekend there was a Sketch Crawl with the East Bay Urban Sketchers and I went to Jack London Square in Oakland, California to meet up with them. We were eight all together. The majority of them are also Sketchbook Skool Klassmates, which was fun meeting them in person for the first time!

I started by drawing this huge crane that moves cargo onto ships! I thought it looked like a gigantic dinosaur. I think you had to see the real thing to see it that way!

From there we walked over to the farmers market that was going in full swing. Live music helped me draw this scene above. The produce seller from "Swank Farms" came around to see what I was doing and gave me a nod of approval. When I turned my angle a bit I saw this tall pole with all the bicycles hanging from it and the flags waving in the breeze. It was a warm sunny day! One little girl stopped to see what I was doing and said "That's really good drawing!" I told her she could do it too and she nodded her agreement back at me! A passing guy also told me it was good. It's nice to hear this when you are out in public drawing!

Later we gathered together to eat our lunches and I drew the group! I had more time so I drew this new friend (SBS) too.

When my husband came to pick me up, some of the group had left already, but he was able to take this great photo of the four of us still there! It's so much fun to meet up with other artists and draw together. I cannot recommend it highly enough!
That's me on the far left waving at you!
Four of the Eight of us who came out to draw together on this day!

Happy Paint Party Friday ... Happy drawing and creating ... We've only been home less than two weeks from Europe, so images of that still dance in my head, but slowly I am acclimating to being back in the states, home with my cat, house, job, and "normal life" ... but I sure wouldn't mind still being traveling!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


 It's hard coming home after a months travels abroad. I'd like to write more in depth about our trip, perhaps things we learned along the way would be helpful to others making a similar trip sometime.

On this particular day we were visiting the Aran Island off of the village of  Doolin, Ireland. We walked around the island, enjoying it's stone walls, and green fields, coming to this ship wreck rusted out hull, and I stopped to rest and draw it. Matteo, is the Italian fellow we met on this walk and he wanted to take a photo of me drawing the ship. Below you can see one half of a double page spread in my large Moleskin art journal I did of her.

We absolutely fell in love with the village of Doolin.  This is part of the main drag. The other part is as small. A few shops to encourage tourists to buy wool Irish sweaters. I did! And in the post before this one you can see my drawing of the pink store with the thatched roof below. If you look very closely you'll see me sitting on the stone wall next to the jeep wearing my new green Irish wool sweater and sketching away!

and here I am adding water brush to paint or colored pencils not sure which now.

We backpacked in Europe, meaning all our belongings (clothes, toiletries & art supplies) had to fit in a 40L Osprey backpack and a smaller day pack,  and be not too heavy, as I had to carry things up and down flights of stairs in underground train stations, on and off buses and trains, in airports, on cobbled streets, etc. Sometimes for way longer than I felt humanly possible, but I did do it and I am proud my body held up for it all.

We took a boat ride from Doolin to the Island and it took us on a side trip very near the Cliffs of Moher. Beautiful is an understatement.

Back at our BnB on our last day before heading to the bus to Galway and the train to Dublin for our flight home the next day we stopped to say goodbye to our friend the donkey, who lived a few doors down from us. The whole atmosphere here was so very tranquil, peaceful, quiet, that it was a very difficult thing to say goodbye to all of this and head back to bigger city life.

My husband did an excellent job of planning our trip; I lucked out finding us perfect accommodations to stay in, always spotlessly clean, friendly proprietors, comfortable and attractive. Language was never a barrier even when we did not speak each others languages. We made ourselves understood.
We both thought it was one of the best months of our lives!
And were so glad we got to enjoy it together.

 These baggy black pants were "rain gear", although we met up with very little of that. I'm wearing them over black tights. On the way home I was wearing layers of clothes to lighten the load on my back in the backpack. Thus also wearing the green sweater under the down jacket even though it was not THAT cold.

And so off we went saying goodbye to Doolin, our last village on our journey, to Dublin and our flight home the next day. We can't wait to go back!

Some more Sketchbook Skool assignments completed:

And the front of that ship wreck on the top of the post!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Travels with Lynn Gets Closer to the End .. Ireland!

sometimes when I'm doing a post from my iPad things have a way of going where they want to go, but not necessarily at my bidding. I'm pretty sure first picture should be second in line here, but it's us catching a train in England on our way to Ireland, that involved underground tube trains, rail train and buses! So glad we got there. We loved King Henry's castle at Hampton Court in London, but were
ready once more for old quaint, quiet villages...

I loved drawing these three women in the station. A younger member of their family caught me drawing them and gave me a most approving smile!

Once on the train I had lots of unsuspecting subjects to choose from! 

This photo does not belong here. Perhaps it wanted to remind me how much I enjoyed the village of Wissenburg, Germany and it's colorful buildings. I do believe I've posted what I drew there in an earlier post.

A night to remember, us in Ireland, at an Irish pub listening to excellent authentic Irish music by realIrish  local musicians who played beautifully! They caught me drawing them and asked me to show them these pages before I put them away. I in turn asked them to autograph themselves for me and they did! 

This adorable thatched roof cottage, now a sweater shop, in the village of Doolin, Ireland begged me to draw and color it! I showed it to the French propiortress and she liked it too.

This precious stone house is next door to our BNB here in Doolin. 

Tomorrow we take a bus, then a train back to Dublin. An all day affair. The day after that we fly home. Not at all sure I am ready to do so. It's been a dream vacation, packed full of adventures. My dear husband deserves my undying praise for planning out this marvelous trip. 

We had amazing places to visit, incredible sights to behold, awesome people to meet up with, starting with the ten Sketchbook Klassmates in Amsterdam. Two more in Austria. And Ann Hyde and family, yes William the Lurcher too, in Devon, England...people we didn't know ahead of time, but were wonderful to us, along the way. My husbands family in Germany he'd not seen in fifty years and I met for the first time. Strangers who were just nice to talk to.

And I drew to my hearts content!

Who could ask for anything more? I feel satisfied, fulfilled, happy and very, very fortunate we were able to do this. We packed little, only what would fit in backpacks we wore on our backs. It sometimes became a challenge, but we did it. I'm proud of us. Proud of my body for being strong enough to pull this off. 

Two more long hauls and we can put them away for awhile. But we hope to do it again, as long as we are able! 

PS I have filled two and a quarter art journals on this trip so far.

Friday, October 10, 2014

More Travels With Lynn, Come along ...

hope some of the drawings tell their own stories, as this other earlier train ride to London, where I caught these women talking.

Oh this was my disaster breakfast morning when I cut into a canned tomato and it splashed all over my Sketchbook Skool T-shirt and had to be hand washed before we could leave for Hampton Court!

Ah, we are in order here, as we arrived in Hampton Court eventually, and I made a quick sketch of a small part of Henry VIII's castle. I've decided I must have been a brick layer in a previous life as I love drawing bricks. 


Now we go back a few days to saying goodbye to Ann Hyde of Sketching William the Lurcher, and Paper, Paint, Pencils & Pens blogs. We'd said hello to Ann and her husband Graham and their dog, Wiiliam four days earlier. It was an awesome visit. Ann and Graham picked us up from the train station, when we found we couldn't rent a car for this leg of the journey. They drove us to our AirBNB, they fed us lunches and dinners each day, Ann and I drew every day by the sea together. They live in the most indylic village of Willacombe. It was quiet, quaint, relaxing and beautiful. Our friendship grew. I played cards with Graham, and he teased me relentlessly about myfears of cars driving on the wrong side of the roads.  Saying goodbye was not easy.

Here are some of the spots Ann and I drew at... Cawley ...


And the Valley of the Rocks..

I so enjoyed just hanging out with Ann and Graham and of course  William, who I finally got used to his jumping up and kissing me on the mouth. 
I think he likes me! 

Ann and I at one of our drawing spots by the sea. That's me on the right.

This next "out of order" cartoon shows my most difficult day of walking for what seemed forever and was actually several miles by foot, with my big backpack on from a ferry boat from France to England, where we tried to rent a car, but the place to do so was closed.
Finally we got a train, then a taxi to our airBNB only to find I had to climb a mountain of stairs to get to our room. I crashed there, needless to say and after a good nights sleep was re energized to push on the next day again. 

These last two pictures show some difficulties we encountered in getting there, but it all worked out grand in the end. Most of this trip has been picture perfect, peaceful, beautiful, mind boggling amazing and fun. But as life in general it does have it's ups and downs, often with hills and back burdens involved. The good news is I'll be going home with new leg muscles I never knew possible before.

 One last shot at Saint Mont Michel where we also were in heaven with all we were seeing and doing in France.
We actually had this view  from the window of our AirBNB ... A charming place, in Huisness , a quaint small French village. Narrow roads, stone houses, flower boxes... 
In the morning of our second day there, we awoke to fog. We took the two mile walk out to the island and watched Mt Saint Michel gradually appear out of the fog ... a lot like Brigadoon! 

Next stop Ireland, out last country before heading home. I have a few pages to fill in my biggest art journal and hope to do it there. I've finished one smaller journal and started a third that Ann gave me. These memories will make me happy for the rest of my life.


Many of you know my dear friend, Cris Marlow, of A Country Life. (Her blog) I just heard from her this morning telling me she is in the hospital following an auto accident, she was rear ended, and the accident resulted in her having a broken hip. 
She is scheduled for surgery for a hip replacement tomorrow. I'm sure she'd love hearing from you. I'd suggest going to her blog and leaving a note there. Thanks. We need to help lift her spirits! 


Friday, October 3, 2014

Travel along with us on our Grande Tour de Europa!

These drawings are not all sequentially posted, so pardon me as I skip back and foth over the past few weeks of our journey. 

Here we are on the Normandy beaches paying tribute to our American and British forces that landed here on D Day, June 6, 1945! My husbands father was one of the lucky ones (American) who survived this mission.

This was done on the train to Paris, a long day of two train rides that took us to Caen, France.

Meanwhile, back in Berghausen, Germany, we came upon these delightful goats in the beautiful park behind Berghausen, Castle! The swans on the water were lovely too!

This lamb was enjoying grasses behind the same castle.


Earlier that morning we'd walked across the bridge into Austria, sat on a bench looking at the whole of the Berg (Castle) and I sat drawing it all. 

Now go back several days to our time spent in the quaint village of Weissenburg where I quickly sketched this ancient tower, and later spent time detailing it out with darker lines and color.

We spent two days with our Austrian friends, Heidi Likar and Jutta Wenz, fist in Salzburg and then in Konigsee where we laughed and drew together in the rain. Where they held up an umbrella over me and my sketchbook so I could finish my painting and carried it back to the boat we'd come in on to let it dry! Such friends are they!!

Jutta did the top drawing of all of us and me the bottom. 

Fast forward again to the morning of the trains to France, Starbucks in Munich, Germany around five in the morning where everyone was falling asleep over their coffees waiting for their trains with us.

This is the same sleeper awake for just a few minutes before falling back to sleep. I didn't sleep. I just kept drawing.

In France we had the most absolute pleasure enjoying the site of Mont Saint Michel. Here I drew for hours. Talked to folks from all over the world who wanted to take my picture drawing, who talked to me about their artistic endeavors and about Sketchbook Skool.

Oh, here's another train traveler!

And a final sketch of St. Mont Michel on our second day there. The morning we waked two miles to approach her and watched her slowly appear out of the fog and into another magical sunny day.

Thanks for sharing my journey with you. I hope you enjoy the ride!