Thursday, November 13, 2014

Just call me Lefty

Today marks the third week since I broke my wrist and changed my life, temporarily. Luckily I didn't break the other wrist which is my dominant hand. Despite that dominance thing, however, daily life has been turned upside down. I learned that I can't cut an orange which of course meant I had to eat that slice of cake sitting in the icebox. Darn!

I can't drive - doctor's orders. I can't work - my bosses orders. It isn't all bad, in fact I can catch up on my reading, spend more time with my cats and sketch. So
I'll try to document this journey in my sketchbooks.  And try to remember to post the drawings here.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014


RIP Tony Maurovich

Tony was a beloved member of The Catholic Voice news paper, where I work. Yesterday I attended his funeral.

He looks far better than this drawing. Forgive Me Tony

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Watching the crowd watching the Giants

My sketchcrawl group met at Brennan's in Berkeley last night (Oct. 22). Brennan's is a sports bar. Cathy, another sketcher, suggested this venue especially since the SF Giants were playing in the World Series. There was a big crowd watching several of the TV's. At the beginning folks were shouting and their approval as they watched their Beloved Team. Soon the frenzy subsided. Damn those KC Royals!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Sick at home

I was struck with some germy thing this week so I spent the last couple of days at home. Somehow I found a Bic pen with 4 color and a sketchbook. I had the worst headache and the only way I found relief was sketching.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Eat Real Festival

Today I had a number of sketching opportunities to choose from so my stomach took the lead - the Eat Real Festival @Jack London Square. Food trucks galore - everything from jam to jambalaya and more. I had a tasty crab cake slider which was delish then did some sketching and as I was leaving I had to join the line leading to the gelato. I went home with a happy tummy.

Friday, September 5, 2014

New, new,new

Lately I've been trying new thing like new clothes and a hair makeover, which involved having my hair cut real, real short. Now I'm experimenting with my drawing style - if that's what you want to call it. Went to a farmer's market in north Berkeley with the sketch group last night Sept. 4.

Trying something different

At last night's Sketch Night I thought I'd try something different. Instead of being so detail-oriented I am shooting for a looser style which should speed up my sketching.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Emeryville in August

My sketch group traveled to Emeryville last night. I know that my buildings come out wonky but I thought maybe this time... I can live with wonky.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Temescal Street Fair

I spent some time at the street fair. Grooved to live music, ate a hot dog, Tara's organic ice cream (coffee flavor) and sketched the scene. This was a good day!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Looking out of my window

I almost forgot to eat because I was busy sketching this scene from my cubicle. This is the best time after BART to catch people to sketch.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Wayback machine

Thursday evening the Sketchers and I went to the Pallet Store. I'm not sure about the name but it was funky place where people came to buy old stuff - from sewing machines to uh... There was stuff there I could not name. Knick knacks from the 50s or 60s? A dream come true for a sketcher because all these things were inside a dark building. Too many things to sketch. So what did I find? An old gas can, bicycle tires and a cat in the box. I couldn't resist.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Tommy and Timmy

Today the kitties marked their 4th week of life,however, it was a rather bittersweet time because Tim's and Tom's sister died suddenly. I rushed these two and their mom, Ruby, to the vet not knowing how this Little Kitty died. Apparently this is not uncommon in the feline world. Babies can just die like that. Though her time with us was short,  Little Kitty - who was developing into a feisty little thing - was loved and will be remembered.

Monday, May 19, 2014

One small step for a kitty

The babies that Ruby gave birth to two weeks ago are trying to walk. This one walked the furthest from his mama. It was 1am and I just woke up in time to see and sketch the fun.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

homework from Sketchbook Skool

For the past six weeks I have been a student of Sketchbook Skool, an online art school community. It was founded by and for people who sketch, have sketchbooks or journals as well as those newbie's who claim that they can't sketch but are sketch-curious. I fall somewhere in the middle of those who are very experienced artists and those who only sketch in the privacy of their homes.

That changed after my mother died in 2009. When she was in the hospital I think I sketched everything in her room except the bedpan. Part of my New Normal Life has been about getting out of the house and going somewhere to draw. Some weeks later as I surfed the internet art communities I heard about a group of people - urban sketchers - who met up and went out regularly to sketch. For some reason this socially anxious woman was intrigued and decided to give it a try. I had been attending Sketchcrawls where I started talking to a local artist/teacher and found out about her urban sketch group. I was scared but decided if I am ever going to bring some art in my life before I die I''d better do it now.

I've been roaming throughout the East Bay in urban sketcher mode now for three or four years. I took an even bigger step - a leap if you will - when I traveled all the way to Washington state last year to attend an urban sketcher workshop. I met and talked to new people, -- well they usually talked and I listened. But I was getting a lot better at small talk. So  I soaked in all the information at the workshop and built a small library of books on urban sketching. I didn't think about myself as an artist - I didn't go to art school but attended classes offered at the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco. I just wanted to see where this drawing thing I have will take me.

For the past month it took me to an online art course called Sketchbook Skool. Six very experienced artists shared their tips and techniques in another area of art that seems interesting to me - illustrated journaling. So I will be including some of my homework from SBS - like the Tommy Kane inspired sketches above - on this blog in addition to my urban sketching.

Maybe I'll find my own style. Maybe I've found something to fill the big void in my life following my mom's death. All I know is the more I draw, the better I feel.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Sketching @Cathedral of Christ the Light

It was the first of May and the sketch group met me at the place I work, the Cathedral complex. I was uneasy about posting all of my sketches of the exterior of the Cathedral - it is such a challenging piece of architecture that I sketched part of the plaza instead.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

sketching update

I am way behind on posting my sketches. The 1st sketch are of two ducks that made their way to the Cathedral Plaza, so I grabbed my sketchbook and pen and went out to capture the moment. The 2nd photo is outside a ministry operated by a Buddhist or Hindu community in Berkeley. I am told that they serve delicious food and that they welcome anyone, especially those who can't pay.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

My sketch group gathered recently at a restaurant called Spice Monkey in downtown Oakland. Although the architecture was interesting, I felt more comfortable drawing people. This is sketcher Susan.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

A stab at reportage

The Christ the Light Cathedral in Oakland hosted a memorial service on the 5th anniversary of the day four law enforcement officers were shot and killed. Not only did a number of police come to the Cathedral, local media did as well.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Amazing sketching opportunity

My sketch group was in sketching heaven last night when we sketched at the Berkeley City Club, a classic building designed by Julia Morgan. I don't know all the fancy architectural jargon so I will quote the brochure I picked up:

"The City Club is known for its steel-reinforced concrete walls (artfully fashioned to look like wood), leaded glass windows, interior courtyards and magnificent indoor swimming pool. This building is a blend of Romanesque and Moorish styles of architecture common to the areas surrounding the Mediterranean Sea."

Friday, March 7, 2014

Last week my sketching group went to this beautiful boutique called Serrahna in Oakland. It was filled with fabric and textures and color. I didn't get far from the door when I found this spot in the corner. Believe me, the actual store is breath-taking.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Jesse in Concert

Jesse Manibusan came to my parish church Feb. 16 and delivered a lively concert.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Grace Cathedral

Spent a wonderful day with the SF Sketchers who went to this gorgeous structure.