Friday, February 12, 2016

Moleskine Sketching for February - 04

Continuing my Moleskine sketchbook series. I'm having a tough time staying on task, drawing only in pencil and only from life in a 5x3 Moleskine book. ADD and singular month-long projects don't often see eye-to-eye. Anyway, here are some more sketches from this week.

Cinnamon roll

A very quick Cinnamon Roll

Vintage American Thermos Bottle Co. lunchbox

My vintage American Thermos Bottle Co. lunchbox.

I drink a lot of coffee, sometimes the lines get a little blurred and it's hard to tell where coffee ends and I begin.

Morning self portrait as coffee.

Karim Rashid "Oh Chair" in my office. A holdover from my late 20s and when I got really into modern industrial design.

Oh Chair

Nuova Simonelli Espresso Machine at Dancing Mule Coffee Co.

Nuova Simonelli Espresso Machine at Dancing Mule Coffee Co.

And lastly, my hand made waxed canvas pipe roll and Missouri Meerschaum corncob pipe. It's a Rusticob from Aristocob.

Waxed canvas pipe roll and corncob pipe.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Moleskine Sketching for February - 03

I managed to knock out a few sketches over the weekend. We also participated in the Family Day events at Springfield Art Museum. My seven-year-old daughter got to try her hand at making Pop Art and drawing a Still Life with me.

Donut

Donut

iPhone

iPhone

Probat Coffee Roaster at Coffee Ethic

Probat roaster at Coffee Ethic

A lamp on Springfield town square.

Street lamp on the town square.

Old caretaker's cottage at Maple Park Cemetery. Got pretty chilly on this one. With temps in the low to mid 40s and a steady breeze, I couldn't feel my fingers.

Cold and sketching in Maple Park Cemetery.

Small wooden artist model.

Wooden artist model

Here are our two family still life illustrations, done from the "draw your own still life" setup at Springfield Art Museum. We left them in their sketchbooks. Mine might be a little more technical in execution, but my daughter's is better, overall. She really put a lot of thought into it. I was proud of her effort.

My 7-yr-old daughter's version of the still life. :)

One more of this still life.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Moleskine Sketching for February - 02

This week's sketches. Trying my best to fill this book by the end of the month. It's got a lot of pages.

Ball-peen Hammer, the one I recently restored from a rusty nasty mess of a thing.

Ball-peen hammer

Bagels

Bagels

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Zippo

Zippo

Dart

Dart

Hario V60 Pour-Over Coffee Dripper

Hario V60 Coffee Dripper and Mason Jar.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Moleskine Sketching for February - 01

For the month of February or until I run out of pages in the tiny 5x3 Moleskine sketchbook I bought over the weekend, I plan to draw only in pencil and only from objects and places found in life, not from photographs. I'm trying to take things back to basics for a little bit, just as an exercise in scaling objects correctly and learning to work faster with more feeling.

Here's what I've got so far:

A yard gnome that I painted for my wife several years ago, around Mothers Day.

Moleskine Sketching - Yard Gnome

My Buck "Deuce" pocketknife.

Moleskine Sketching - Buck "Deuce" Pocketknife

Sitting in Legacy Bagelry.

Moleskine Sketching at Legacy Bagelry

Lunchtime sketching at Dancing Mule Coffee Co.

Lunchtime sketching at Dancing Mule Coffee Co

Lunchtime sketching at Dancing Mule Coffee Co

I've not made myself practice anything specific since the early 1990s and college. So, this should be pretty fun.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Punch Up the Color.

This week, when I've had the time, I've been attempting to get away from using local color in my sketches. Local color being a direct interpretation of what I see. This week I abandoned it somewhat for more vibrant color use.

Here, a lobster I sketched from a pic I found online. It's in color pencil on textured paper.

Lobster in color pencil

I've been mildly fascinated and obsessed with folk traditions around Europe, but mostly the British Isles. Part of my mother's family came from Wales and Cornwall. This color pencil sketch is of the Mari Lwyd, a folk tradition in parts of Wales that happens around Christmas time. It involves poetry or song, a good amount of alcohol and the parading of a decorated horse skull on a stick.

Mari Lwyd, a Welsh Christmas folk custom, involving song or poetry, alcohol and a decorated horse skull on a stick.

And lastly, a watercolor and ink sketch of Arches National Park. It's to be a gift for a family member of my wife, sometime next weekend.

Arches National Park - sketched for my wife's aunt and uncle.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A couple of rustic sketches and some self portraits.

Last week I sketched the two top images. One from a pic of the writing hut of Cornish Poet and the Vicar of Morwenstow, Robert Stephen Hawker. He was an Anglican priest that I found interesting when reading about Cornish history and culture some time back. I did another sketch of his hut about 7-8 years ago. The second sketch is from a black and white pic of an old White River/Ozarks Johnboat.

Old doors

Ozarks Johnboat

I'm working on drawing more portraits. I've never been happy with my portrait work and as a result, I've dodged the bullet pretty much since college. I'm making myself do them now, as of mid-December. What better way to get over your grievances with a form of art than by drawing yourself repeatedly? Before there were selfies, there were self portraits.

These are all about 15-20 minute sketches before work, after the wife and kiddo have left for school and work and before I have to dash madly off, myself. The top one done December 15, the second January 5 and the bottom one, today. I'm trying to chart a progression to see how far away from sucking at it I can get.

A Quick Self Portrait

15 minute self portrait before work this morning.

15 minute self portrait before work today. Not real happy with it. The mouth is pretty off. Only posting to chart a progression on these. Also, I took the beard and five years off Sunday evening.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Camping at Erbie, Arkansas and Parker-Hickman Homestead

Friday evening, with four inches of snow on the ground here in Springfield, we set out for the slightly slippery and icy hills of Arkansas and the Buffalo River. My friend Brian and I were headed for the Erbie area to meet our friend Darren. Our intention was to Hike from Kyles Landing to Erbie on the Buffalo River Trail, a section we hadn't done in about ten years. Fate was not on board, she threw us an iceskating rink for a road and we were pretty much stuck in the river valley until things thawed enough on Sunday to safely drive out. No worries, we just explored the Erbie area and the Parker-Hickman Homestead and filled our bellies with good food and BS stories around the campfire.

Temps got pretty cold at night, the lower twenties on Friday night and down to 12 degrees on Saturday night. I was a little underprepared for that, so I froze my butt off. We did, however, hear a lot of coyotes in the night. No owls this time, which is odd. We woke to crows murdering aplenty and saw three bald eagles, a couple of armadillos, signs of beavers working the trees along the stream and the tracks of both elk and what appears to be a mountain lion. The other guys also saw a shooting star that traveled the length of the sky. I'd already turned in for the night. I never last as long as the them around the fire. It lulls me too sleep to easily.

Friday night, steak, 'taters and beans around the fire.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas Up Saturday morning to breakfast and frost flowers all around camp. I don't think I've seen so many as on this trip.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

I found some bluejay feathers down the hill around the canebrake from us. Our camp was situated in the middle of a stand of cedars and a canebrake of river cane (arundinaria gigantea). One of a couple of indigenous bamboos.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

After breakfast, we headed out to check out the Parker-Hickman Homestead, a homestead occupied from the 1840s to the 1970s, when the National Park Service bought them out.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

I'm looking forward to sketching some from the next bit of pics, so look for those in future posts. I could have sat down there all weekend with a pencil and paper.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Eventually, we made our way up to the Cherry Grove Cemetery. We passed through a lot of river cane and out through some open fields riddled with elk hoof prints and along a ridge overlooking the river before we came to it.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

A honey locust tree is not a friendly tree.

Erbie, Arkansas

Back to camp for the evening.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Up Sunday morning for breakfast and a walk towards Ozark Campground. We didn't go too far, but had some nice views and found some big cat tracks on the riverbanks.

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Erbie, Arkansas

Another great trip in the books. I've been heading to the outdoors with these guys for 16-17 years. It's hard to find friends that will suffer a bit for fun, evident in how we had the entire campground to ourselves yet again. Winter camping is the best - no noisy people, no vampirous bugs, no poisonous reptiles, just miles of open trail and scenery. Thanks again to Brian D. and Darren G.

Erbie, Arkansas