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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.

Monday, August 30, 2021

Urban Sketching Summer Retreat: Madeline Island School of the Arts


The inaugural Urban Sketching Summer Retreat was held at the Madeline Island School of the Arts (MISA) August 16-20, 2021. The gorgeous island in Lake Superior and the historic port town of Bayfield, WI. provided us all with what I call a "target rich environment" of sketching subjects.  Instructors Shari Blaukopf, Paul Heaston, Uma Kelkar and myself had 51 participants attend. They were divided into 4 groups, and each group had a different instructor each day. The  5th and final day was a giant group sketch with everyone together, followed by a big "throw down" where we all admired each others' work for the week (and made a few sales and trades of sketches). Thank you school founder/director Charles Meech and the entire staff for hosting us and making this a truly remarkable event! Here are a few of my demonstration and leisure sketches from the week:

Paul, Shari, me and Uma--this one's a wrap! See you next summer...

Saturday, March 13, 2021

Siesta Key Observed--An Ongoing Project

The pandemic and corresponding restrictions on travel grounded Patti and I for a year (so far), and resulted in the cancellation of our urban sketching workshops in Provence, Tuscany, Santa Fe and more. On the flip side, it has afforded me a fantastic gift of time to get to know our home island of Siesta Key better through almost endless opportunities for exploring and sketching. And as I've said many times, sketching on location can put you on intimate terms with a place like nothing else can. One of my early pieces was this view of the Point of Rocks, the only natural rock formation on Florida's gulf coast. It anchors Crescent Beach, and is about a mile walk up the beach from our home. Its position is one of the key reasons that the middle reach of the island has been able to capture its world-class, 99% quartz beach sand, and guides currents that keep building the beach rather than eroding it. It's a revered local landmark, and I hope this mixed media piece did it justice.

Point of Rocks, Siesta Key, Florida.