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SKETCHBOOK: a creative tool and a way of life that celebrates design and drawing as vital ways to see and value culture, to discover ideas, and to envision a better world.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

On Location: Bradenton Beach, Florida

The Sarasota area won't disappoint coastline explorers looking for cool community character with a sense of authenticity. After sketching on Coquina Beach (see previous post), we motored north to Bradenton Beach, a small island community with a quaint, compact village center.  The landmark clock tower shown here is visible from the main road, and pulled us off the highway (as it was designed to do) and through the village to the historic Bridge Street Pier.  We found some shade and cool drinks, and captured the scene shown here, while meeting a number of other travelers and local characters in the process.

The clock tower is on the waterfront at the foot of Bridge Street, making it a highly visible landmark for locals and travelers.






Monday, June 26, 2017

On location: Coquina Beach, Florida

For those who love the beach--Patti and I made a 30-minute drive north from Siesta Key to check out the Sunday morning market on Coquina Beach.  After several days of overcast skies, I was taken with the sunlight on the beach and the colorful mash-up of buildings, sand, umbrellas and beach patrons.  We found a table in the shade, and picked up a couple of pina coladas.  I proceeded to capture the scene I was so taken with, while Patti proceeded to capture me.  A near perfect way to spend an hour.

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The observer and the observed...

Laying down ink.  I still believe the combination of lively linework and watercolor best conveys my impressions of the energy of a place.


The frozen pina colada makes watercolor time even more creative...
Some days it  all comes together well.
Our work here is done--time to find the Star Fish Market for lunch on the working docks...and maybe another sketch.

Idaho Adventure: Hemingway's Silver Creek Preserve

On our recent Mountain West road trip, we found and hiked the Silver Creek Preserve near Ketchum, Idaho to see the unspoiled landscape and to locate a Hemingway Monument there.  We were told that if we wanted to see and understand Hemingway's Idaho, don't follow the tourists to Ketchum or Sun Valley.  Go to Silver Creek, which is virtually unchanged since the Nobel Prize-winning author hunted and fished there with his sons.   We parked along a dirt road in the preserve, and noticed the Bald Eagle overhead--a very good sign.  We hiked along the creek through grasses still wet with morning dew, and found open water with a view to the mountains beyond.  The air was cold and crisp, and the early morning sunlight gave everything a golden glow.  There we found the monument, and the perfect moment.   The sketch didn't take long, and Patti took some photos to capture the memory.

Hemingway at Silver Creek.

The elegant stone monument at the site is unobtrusive.  The timeless biblical quote opens Hemingway's novel The Sun Also Rises. 
Your humble correspondent at work.

In process...the snow-capped mountains in the distance appeared closer that they look in the photo.

Hemingway, Bobbi Powell and actor Gary Cooper (a Hemingway buddy) standing at virtually the same spot that the sketch captures.

Our Silver Creek memory, with the Bald Eagle keeping watch.