All posts by janesanha

Architectural Sketching Challenges

Whole Foods, Eugene, OR

      There was lots to see from the Community Room at Whole Foods.

       Penny and Joanne were busy drawing the interesting houses across the street. Here’s Penny’s sketch.

      Joanne added the trees to her house sketch, and Doug took on the incredible challenge of the curving lines in the US Courthouse.

            Marnie’s attention was captured by the traffic below – and doesn’t color always make a difference!

What’s Ken up to, inquiring minds want to know!

    Oh, the view from the top of the stairs! What a clever sketcher!

         Penny and Barb So talked about traveling to Paris, then exchanged ideas with Sandy. Here’s Barb So’s sketch of the house next door.

      Hugh used the window as a frame for his sketch, indoors & out.

      Jane first focused on the building across the way (which was WAY too complicated), then on the message of the billboard. Good idea.

      Laura, looking out the same window as Hugh & Jane, drew trees instead of getting caught up with the complicated building. Nice!

       Tomomi was back with her children for art exploration (& modeling).

    The payoff they got for modeling for Barb Sh was a look at the mandalas she was making with crows and frogs. What Fun!

      Lealan demonstrated her technique of sketching in light blue first, then adding colored markers for a lively portrait sketch.


Surprises Sketching at RiverBend

RiverBend Cafeteria, Springfield, OR

      We had some nice surprises at this week’s gathering – Barb Sh’s sister and brother-in-law from Albuquerque joined us!

     And then Satoko came in to share her watercolors from her recent trip to Portugal.

          Hugh and Sandy bought a sketch from Erik (yay!), and meanwhile here’s what Daisy was busy sketching.

       Sandy showed her sketchbook from Death Valley. Quite a contrast to today’s sketch of Oregon greenery!

      Hugh quickly did a line drawing of someone in the room, then put in Crayon d’Ache colors with a light water wash.

      Barb Sh had an update on the sketch she did last week, as well as one she just started, then did a view out the window & lights above.

        Joanne was mesmerized by the path outside, and by the time she was finished even had some reflective text to go with it – nice!

      Doug did a people sketch, then turned to the path & lanterns outside, too. Such fun to have a La Romita sketcher with us.

      Bev did a cluster of people at a nearby table, then the outside lanterns, and back to a cluster of people. She’s so prolific

        Pat tackled the winding dropped ceiling with lamps, quick decided she was doing it starting at the wrong end, and look at the results!


Jane started with an outside lantern, and continued to add some of the inside lights.  They probably deserve color, Jane…

So Much to Sketch at RiverBend!

PeaceHealth Medical Center, RiverBend, Springfield, OR

Most of us sketched in the lobby today – so many things to choose!

        The wooden carving on the rock fireplace caught Katie’s eye, then she went on to sketch daffodils on her pre-prepared pages.

        Many of us were fascinated with the sculpture at the entrance of the lobby, called “Day of Days.” It even rocks!

         First Jane’s sketch, then Marsha’s. We all agreed it was so difficult!

       Penny saw it from a slightly different angle – oh! that’s a parrot on her arm! And a beehive on her head!

     Bev sketched it from across the room (!), then did a people sketch.

     Meanwhile at the table…   Here’s Erik’s sunset sketch from memory.

        Barb Sh showed her finished sketch started last time, then…what… Oh! It’s the lady at the grand piano beyond their table!

   Ken took his time to get started, then chose the hanging lamp structures – WOW!

       Laura and her friend were sketching upstairs in the cafeteria. Laura didn’t think much of her lamp, but she really liked her darling damsel flies! Looks like a story is brewing here…

Finding Peace at PeaceHealth

PeaceHealth Medical Center at RiverBend, Springfield, OR

It was a rainy day, but the cafeteria at RiverBend was very hospitable! We really enjoyed the time there.

     There were 10 of us there, but two were outside. Lovely views.

      Here’s the view of the group from Laura’s perspective, and the beginning of her sketch – aghhhhh! perspective is such a challenge!

      Ken was sketching the trees beyond Barb Sh & Erik. Is it done? No, add more dark, more detail, more contrast…more…

      Bev had another “pre-prepared” page to share, then took on the winding path, too, which improved with the addition of trees.

     Here’s Lealan’s beginning sketch of the view in her signature style.

        Meanwhile, Jane was looking up…talk about perspective challenge!

     Barb Sh shared her “spicy” sketch of the cooks at LCC from last week, then began a sketch of one of the nearby “models” here.

         Marnie had a sketch of her art bag done at home, then got very involved in her portrait sketch of a person in context today.

      We always learn so much from each other – here’s Marsha’s colored pencil project, then colored pencil on black inspired by an artist’s work of the Shelton-McMurphey-Johnson house. And then she started a portrait of a nearby model, too.

Going Back to School

Center Building, Lane Community College, Eugene, OR

       There are getting to be so many of us, it’s hard to find a venue that will hold us! But the 20 of us hit the jackpot today.

      Tomomi is one of our most recent to the art circle, and Barb Sh, Penny, & Marsha enjoyed giving her (& her family)  painting tips.

        Here’s Barb Sh capturing the scene with her pen & water brush.

       Bev interspersed new sketches with going back to complete a previous one (she says Ken gave her the inspiration to do that!).

         Marnie, Bev, Barb Sh, & Daisy hard at work – here’s Daisy’s sketch.

    Marnie took advantage of the student models in the Center.

     Hugh, his inner engineer coming out, focused on the contextual surroundings, with the people incidental.

        The models do have a tendency to move, however. Jane resorted to “making up” one guy, and taking white pen to the first guy. Better?

      Laura took on the challenge of the chairs – wow, well done!

    Katie & Lealan have an intense interchange, & here’s Katie’s work.

     Lealan did a montage of people sketches – yes, it did get crowded.

    Speaking of intent, Sandy is determined to conquer perspective, and tries to be appreciative of her husband’s help. No, really!

      Marsha is doing sketches on top of washes – and aha! using photos!

    Penny & Pat draw nearby models – oh, Penny did Sandy & Katie!

      Pat started with a little pencil sketch, then really got into drawing the carrot cake on the bag. Then took photos for still models.

Whew! What a great day! We may have to come back here.

Choose Your (Art) Tool!

New Day Bakery, Eugene


Here’s the gang, looking one way down the table, then the other, and then in the other room altogether! Many people, different tools, too.

      Helga is using simple graphite pencil, although she tells us she has actually ordered some paint supplies and looks forward to them!

            Sandy is using pencil, too, to work on the concepts behind perspective, with her husband Hugh giving her some pointers.

        Here you can see the results of Barb Sh using water soluble graphite, which becomes permanent when you put water on it – no smearing!

     Marnie was working on a portrait of Katie, using graphite, which delighted Katie so much she had to take a photo of it!

        Katie put masking tape down for borders, anticipating watercolor, but began her sketch with pencil first.

        Pencil first for Barb So, too, then watercolor to capture the color in her model’s sweater (Barb Sh was the unwitting model – thanks!).

         Laura does pencil first (good idea on a challenging perspective topic) then moves on to watercolor (see her little “makeup” palette).

        Danita is using watercolor “sticks” for the first time, trying different approaches and wishing at last for a sumi stick grinding stone!

      Marsha has a watercolor wash background all ready to go, and did her sketch of Jean (sitting across from her) in colored pencil. Nice!

    Jane, in a moment of rashness, went straight to ink, then watercolor.

      Hugh started out with wax crayons (ala Erik) on black, then on to ink.

      Erik’s mastery of the wax crayons is evident – look at that detail, too!

        Jean says she’s emulating Erik, but she does another technique, too, adding watercolor to her soluble wax crayons to blend & brighten.

     And then there’s Ken, noted for using whatever art tool is near at hand – pens, markers, watercolor backgrounds – WOW.


Cooking up sketching ideas at the bakery

New Day Bakery, Eugene, OR

This is almost everyone who showed up today – two long tables worth! Barb Sh, Barb So, Marnie, Bev, Ken, Lee, Laura, Hugh, Bev, & Erik.  Not shown are Helga, Jane, Sandy, & Lealan.

       Barb So shared what she’d done in her sketchbook since last time, then went on to add little vignettes of what was around her here.

Bev had been to the Chinese Gardens – lovely pages! And she did lovely pages of the surroundings at New Day Bakery today, too.

     Ken sketched some of the group, while Jane caught a worker in action loading the display shelves – the gold coins? See below*

     Marsha found the scene beyond the window interesting, and then added the people inside around the window frame, too.

        Hugh was a window sketcher, too, adding people and then going on to sketch a dramatic photo on black paper – see results next week!

       Marnie did a table top still life, then the display of bakery goods across the room.

       Laura tried drawing a picnic table outside (ack! the angles!), and then focused on the table top items, too.

    Helga started out drawing a chair on the patio (now there’s a perspective challenge for you), then added from her imagination.    Not all were sketching the bakery – Barb Sh brought a series of 3 tiny sea urchins – look, the larger one shows how they’re in rectangles!

      Erik’s visual memory never lets him down – incredible scenes!

      And the gold foil covered coins* were courtesy of Lealan, in honor of Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras, and good luck coins for Chinese New Year coming up on Feb. 16.   Don’t you just love her celebration page?

“A convergence of elements”

Maude Kerns Art Center, Eugene, OR –

    There were 22 of us who gathered at Maude Kerns today to sketch their fabulous show – quilts, metal work, paintings, ceramics. There were lots of elements, for sure, including us!

        As you can see, there was a lot going on to sketch !

        Ken quickly sketched the sketchers. Satoko came in to share her recent paintings from her travels, then started sketching people, too.

      Lealan and Barb So got there early – here’s Barb’s sketch. The metal work sculptures were a real challenge, and she did them so well.

       Lealan was intrigued with the decorated table and chairs – so unique.

       Here’s Daisy’s take on one of the chairs and the table edge, with ceramic sculpture on beyond it.

            Laura, new to the group, dove right in, and when she was apologetic for her portrait sketches, Bev shared the sketch she’d done of Laura!

        Bev also did a series of quick vignettes, including a sketch of the people across the room sketching – recognize anybody?

        Katie filled her page with bits of what she saw: copper sculpture, ceramics, quilts, and even the lighting!

        Barb Sh’s technique with water-soluble ink really adapted itself well to the sculptures around the room. What a super effect.

        Hugh focused on scenes in the corners of the rooms – sculpture, and then quilts. Very different effects for very different kinds of art.

      Erik, a master with wax crayons, had a vision in his mind to sketch – Canada geese. This is going to be fascinating to see finished!

     Lona really brought the sculpture to life with vivid watercolors.

        Marnie loved doing a sketch of the organic metal sculpture.

        Sandy did a watercolor sketch of metal sculptures, then went on to capture the “standing stones” ceramic sculpture, too. Lovely!

    A combination of a metal sculptured basket, and two ceramic sculptures caught Marsha’s eye – wonderful colored pencil work.

      Jane was sketching the same items, different perspective & tools.

        Penny was quite productive – look how many sketches she got done, including a Native American doll sculpture from yet another room.

        Just down from Penny were Tomomi with her three children and her mother, all of them busy sketching. It was a joy to have them with us.


We had fun talking to them about different art tools – Barb Sh about her ink technique with a water brush, and Marsha about how you can use 3 colored pencils to do a whole color wheel (which one of the boys promptly did – way to go!).

Hate Your Handwriting? Let’s Look at Lettering!

Vistra Framing & Gallery, Eugene, OR

There was enough interest in looking at different lettering/font forms, that we set aside a whole meeting to explore.

Penny, Ken, Lona, Marsha, Katie, Bev, Marnie, & Barb Sh.   Jane was behind the camera, Erik had to leave early, & Lealan came late.

      Jane and Katie brought handouts of lettering styles, and Jane had a bunch of felt-tip calligraphy pens people were eager to try.

          Barb Sh started out exploring  Italic Cursive, then tried different embellishments, too. She’s going to have a lot of fun with this.

        Marnie marks off pen widths for making guidelines (5 pen widths for italic). She was a great example of how people got into the task!

      Katie demonstrated good lettering style – paper straight in from of her, model sheet to refer to, light lettering in pencil, then ink.

     Marsha immediately applied the lesson to her sketchbook.

Ken took a tip from the have fun idea of adding embellishments.

      Lona put in her typical vivid background, & shared her sketchbook she’s sending to the sketchbook library (wow!) with Penny.

     Barb Sh catches Lealan up on the lettering process – a great friend.

       Jane had taken calligraphy classes before, so she tried doing a new script, first with brush pen (oops, the slant was SO inconsistent!), then pencil, and finally with a small calligraphy pen with red ink.

        It was easy to see that Bev has had prior training and lots of practice, because look at how she applied all the options in her lettering!

Sketching Urban and Otherwise

Hideaway Bakery, Eugene, OR

        There’s a reason why we don’t qualify as official “Urban Sketchers.”  Part of their credo is to sketch from direct observation, not photos.

        I’ve totally forgotten where Barb Sh took this photo, but the modern art depicted was too tempting for her to pass up!

        Lona fell in love with this photo of tropical fish, and demonstrated her special technique to replicate coral at the bottom of the tank.

      Even Barb So used her photo as a resource for her sketch.

       Katie, too, used a photo of amaryllis blooms for her sketch (along with a font guide – more on that next week!).

     Helga had a photo of persimmons and passion flowers for sketching.

      Marnie continued her industrial sketching – yes, from photos.

     Hugh wondered why he took on the challenge of sketching this photo of an elaborate knotted cord. Wow.

      Finally! Daisy, Danita, and Jane sketched what was in front of them!

        Bev elaborated with her observations of people and things.

      What’s Sandy doing? Sketches of the group, of course!

        Marsha took a pre-stamped page and did a sketch of Lona.

         Lealan was busy sketching some of the group, when Danita brought over a demonstration of how to use dry wall tape – WHAT?!?!?

          Cut a page size strip, put it sticky side down, then with a pencil go across one of the line, skip down and repeat – voila! dotted lines.

        Danita generously demonstrated for others, and then they were off! Lona used watercolor, and Bev made all kinds of patterns with tools.

Stick with us – we’ll lead you astray (with sketching).