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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 @ SketchbookSkool.com

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!
xoxo

46 comments:

  1. Hi Lynn! I cannot get over the fact that Allie is 3!!! Whoa! Time is flying! You are having such a great time sketching and water-coloring! So neat. Especially the journal-ling of your trips! My fav sketch here is of PA-PA!
    xoxo- Julie

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    1. Hi Julie, Yes, Papa is dearly loved and adored by Allie and vice versa! They have something special!

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  2. Love this-so many memories all in one place! We were at Lake Shasta in March and it was low. I can't imagine it now.

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    1. Very low Lynn. Glad you enjoyed my post.

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  3. I love the one with the bellybutton heheheh

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  4. lynn, i am so glad to see the joy art and sketchbook skool have brought to your life. it's like my writing, isn;t it: you're never really lonely if you can draw or write :^)

    ps good that you follow allie's instructions

    love
    kj

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    1. Thanks KJ. It does give me lots of joy and entertainment, just like Allie does!

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  5. What a story with lovely coloring, drawings, paintings....
    Happy weekend!

    my blog is here:
    BLOGitse
    ps. would be great to have URL option leaving a comment...

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  6. What a story, Lynn! Sounds interesting this SkechbookSkool!

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    1. Sirkka it is. I bet you'd enjoy it too!

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  7. Sounds like a wonderful Road trip-I would love to tour round America so many places I want to see. You grand daughter certainly had you drawing lots of pictures of your family. I think you're brave to sit and sketch in public as I have never had the confidence to do it exactly for the rain you just described so you should feel proud that you do it despite that negative little monkey!

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    1. Thanks Nic. The monkey hit hard this visit to CL for some reason. But I think I'll be better next time, as I am happy how I turned those quick sketches into fun and bright drawings!

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  8. Wow this is such a great post jammed with a future CEO of art skool I think....Allie seems so adorable...and she is quite the task master for grandma... Do I see a new style emerging...I think I do!! I am so impressed...love the one of Allie and her You! Thanks for sharing your great energy!

    Hugs Giggles

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    1. Thanks Giggles. Love your visits. Such aspirations you have for me! I'm happy being an exuberant student in SBS!!! Yes, Allie is adorable and fun and funny! New Style? Not sure, but think I may be getting a little better over time. Practice!!! Hugs to you!

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  9. I love your blog and your enthusiasm...it is infectious!! LOL...and you have inspired me today to update my own art blog and join your Paint, Paper & Pens Group!

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    1. Amanda thanks, and I look forward to seeing you and your art at PPP&P. I need your email address to get an invite to you.

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  10. Allie is three? How did that happen?? Lovely that she tells you what to draw.

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    1. I know Mim, hard to believe. Such a doll she is too.

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  11. Well, you know I love you and your art at SS and I love all of you and your creative art here on your blog. (Following you...) Your grand daughter is adorable and how awesome that you have started her on her art journey. What a magnificent gift to give. Love how you wrote her dialogue on the pages. See you over at storytelling...I am so excited about that theme! Cheers-Darlene

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Darlene and Thanks for Following too!!! I adore your arty cartoons! Yes, I have introduced art and sewing to my grandkids and they all excel at it. It is quite wonderful to have shared these things and I will continue to do so as long as I am able.

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  12. Hi Lynn. This is a fantastic travel journal. If you ever take that trip on the coast road let me know we can meet up for coffee or lunch.
    Have a great weekend
    Nicole/Beadwright

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    1. Nicole where will I find you? Where on the coast? Thanks for your visit here, do come again!

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  13. Absolutely lovely! I love your pieces. It's like a traveling journey! Happy PPF!

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    1. Thanks Cozycomfycouch! Glad you enjoyed the trip!

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  14. It was delightful to read and see your trip unfold through your sketches and writing. Think how your grand girl will feel when she looks through this as she grows up, won't she feel so special?
    Please knock that monkey monster off your shoulder...your painting brings you joy, shows how you react emotionally to the places you visit. That's what it's about, not someone else's opinion. You're doing what you love and it shows. Keep it up and keep posting on SBS so we can praise and inspire you.

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    1. Thanks Joan for another pat on the back! I can't tell you how much the support of SBS keeps me going! I feel so much better since I ranted there about my fear that arose while drawing Crater Lake. Monkey be gone! And thanks for visiting here.

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  15. What an absolute darling your little one is! With all your wonderfully inspiring sketches she is sure to want to grow up to be like Grandma. I loved your last two scenic sketches. I hesitate to draw in public for the same reason you gave about the people talking about my sketches. You are totally brave and for good reason. At least your sketches are good. They are sketches, for goodness sakes, not oil paintings you've worked on for a month. I think you could do a comic strip for one of the papers if you so desired. The only sketches that bothered me were those of the cars and trucks on the freeway. I hate traffic.

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    1. Thank you Faye for your insightful comments. I appreciate your words of wisdom. Sorry the traffic got to you. I find it eases the drive for me, actually keeps my mind off the worry about the traffic when drawing it and my surroundings. Thanks for liking my sketches!

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  16. Yep, you are and have been a story-teller. I tried to find where this 'skool' is taught, evidently not on the SE coast!! I would love to have more art training. I identify with the lapse in 'not good enough' through my writing. You are totally good enough: creative, interesting and helpful, don't stop what you are doing, it is wonderful and beautiful. Blessings, Janet PPF

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    1. JKW the Sketchbook Skool is an ONLINE class. Anyone can join from anywhere in the world. It's continuing to be an awesome experience for me and for artist of all levels, from very beginners to very accomplished artists. A wonderful supportive group too.

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  17. Wow! You did some great sketches on your trip. They will be a nice reminder, years from now, of time spent with your family. Much better than photos!!

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  18. I am exhausted by all your drawing!!! I love how demanding Ali is about what you should draw. lol That was quite a road trip. I can't give any advice about getting that monkey off your shoulder except to say that I pretty much try to tune out the people talking around me and just go with it. Thanks for sharing this post. One of our NYC Urban Sketchers will be one of the instructors in Sketch Skool next semester. Her name is Melanie Reim (?) and she does great sketches...especially of crowds of people. I'm always in awe of her sketches. Recently she was out on Long Island and she and my friend, Susan, and I went sketching together. Have a grew weekend.

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    1. Thanks Joan? Sorry to have worn you out, but then you are pretty prolific too! :-)
      How cool that you draw with Melanie Reim. Yes, I've now seen some of her fantastic sketches. Am excited for the opportunity to learn from her. Any chance you might join us at Sketchbook Skool? It's a fantastic group of artists, students and faculty alike.

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  19. WOW! I am awestruck at the volume of work you have accomplished! What an amazing journal of your adventure - one that your family will treasure many years from now!! I wish I had your discipline to write every day in an art journal - they are SO cool!

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    1. Tammie it doesn't take that much time. Sketchbook Skool has really helped me keep the discipline of drawing almost every day. I love seeing my stack of art journals growing taller and my abilities growing better over time.

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  20. Brilliant, fun, hilarious and a journal full of memories

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    1. Thanks Polly, glad you enjoyed it so much!

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  21. KICK THAT MONKEY OUT THE DOOR!! don't listen to him at all! you are an amazing artist. i love, love, love to visit your blog and see what you've been up to. It's the highlight of my day :)

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    1. Alarm cat. I am seeing this for the first time today! (sept. 4) Thank you so much for your support and encouragement. Monkey has run off again. I hope gone for good! Hugs! And thanks!

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  22. I have driven that route many times in our travels. lol I adore these drawings--what fun--I even recognize some of the places. I grew up in Wilsonville, off I-5, as you cross the Willamette River--my family still lives there, and when I was a little girl, I loved to visit Portland. I called it Bridge City and when I grew up, I wanted to live in Portland under a bridge. (grin) Thanks again for sharing your trip. It is so lovely to see the world through your eyes.

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Thanks for leaving your comments as I love hearing from you. Your words of encouragement are why I continue to draw!