Sunday, November 23, 2008

Eleanor vs. Ike

I finished reading Eleanor vs. Ike this weekend. Now, this is in no way a good likeness of her, and I'd like to try a formal, full, painting portrait of her at some point, because she is by far one of my favorite historical/political figures. She did so much. Plus, she said the most profound, eloquent things, with such economy.

Well, the book was fine. I'd never read one of those alternative history books before. This one had some really corny moments, like Eleanor meeting a childhood Hillary Clinton. Not one of my favorite books that I've read this year, but I finished it.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Gadsby's Tavern

Here's an image of the sign outside of Gadsby's Tavern in Alexandria, VA. We went there on the haunted tour, and even though there was just 3 of us, I wasn't able to sketch as we walked around. So, this is from a photo I took that night.

Gadsby's Tavern

Here's an image of the sign outside of Gadsby's Tavern in Alexandria, VA. We went there on the haunted tour, and even though there was just 3 of us, I wasn't able to sketch as we walked around. So, this is from a photo I took that night.

Friday, November 7, 2008


Whereas this would be a good sketch had I done it all in gray, I didn't. But, I don't know why my scanner will only scan in black and white.

This is a scene outside of the Newseum on the day after the election. Everyone was gathered to look at the headlines on the front pages of newspapers from all over the country, even all over the world.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Manassas, VA Rally

Since I early-voted, I visited my sister for the last 4 days in Maryland. One of things that she took me to was the Obama Rally in Manassas, VA. Above is a picture of how many people were behind us (which is a lot--they estimate that the crowd was over 90,000). We waited about an hour to get in, and then about 4 1/2 hours until he got there and spoke. It was his last rally before becoming President Elect. The crowd was great, talked a lot with the people around us.

To put things in perspective about where we were. See that bright light below? That's where he was. He was under that bright light, and by our perspective, about 1/4th of an inch tall. I just have really good digital zoom, is all.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Giant Jawbreaker

I haven't been up to much pastel work in the last few weeks. My hand hasn't totally healed (though, it's much better than it had been over the summer), and I've been very focused on losing weight. I've lost 41lbs so far.
That said, you have to wonder why my latest pastels have all been about candy. I don't know, but candy is very colorful and has great reflections. I haven't gone after much in the way of car portrait commissions, because I usually go to talk to people at car shows in the summer. With my hand doing poorly over the summer, I wasn't anxious to go after that work over the summer. Which means that Christmas will be lean for me in commissions. I know that I have 2 scheduled, and that might be about all. Though, I do have time for more, I assure you!
So, this is how far my latest pastel has gotten over the weekend. It has a sibling painting that is in the trash already, but I think it was good to throw that out to get a complete fresh start. This one looks okay to me. It has that slightly shiny/slightly chalky look of those giant jawbreakers. I just loosely laid the color of the gumballs in, because it was getting late last night. I might not have time to work on it again until probably Wednesday night. But, it's going smoothly so far.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Vote Early

Went last week to the Board of Elections for early voting, because I'll be visiting my sister in Maryland on election day. It went smoothly(or at least I think that it did), and the pollworkers seemed genuinely happy to see voters taking advantage of early voting.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Fortune Cookie Chronicles

Just finished The Fortune Cookie Chronicles by Jennifer 8. Lee this week. It was a good book, if a little disjointed. The story about the fortune cookie bounces around a bit about other interesting stories about the history of Chinese food in America.

Monday, October 13, 2008


This is a small sketch of my small purchase from last weekend's Fort Ligonier Days. I went out on Sunday, met my parents there, and spent the afternoon in the bright sun (meaning: small amount of sunburn---in October!!!).

This is a small open vase that is available from artist, JoAnne Arnone. My quick sketch doesn't give it justice, though. It's turquoise and burgundy and brown and bronze. It's just beautiful.

Flowers by Whole Foods. They sell just 3 flowers of many different varieties for a few dollars, and those are perfect for these types of vases. Otherwise, I'm not much of a vase person. But, I like these open types.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Cleveland Sketchcrawl

I got to the sketchcrawl 15 minutes late, because my tai chi class ended at 9:45. And, I couldn't find the group anywhere around the west side of the flats. After looking for probably 2 minutes, I just settled in with the seagulls, and started to draw. It was nice that once I got into something, I didn't have to get up and move on with the group to a second location.

I was in the nice warm sun near the river, even had a picnic table to set up at.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

No New Drawings

I haven't been drawing a whole lot lately, because I've been spending my spare time either reading books or on the treadmill down in my building's exercise room. I've read so many books in the last few weeks. Mostly non-fiction. I had told someone at work who also works at a bookstore, of which I haven't done in about 4 years. I told her that I have been so disappointed in fiction lately, that I haven't been reading a lot this year. Everytime I dropped $26 or so on a book, I would read a few pages, and become totally disinterested. She said, "Non-fiction is the new fiction." I have enjoyed reading non-fiction, but it's never what I gravitate toward when I'm at the bookstore. But, taking her advice, I strolled only through the non-fiction areas of Barnes & Nobles. I must have found 20 books that looked fascinating to me, and when I did my "first page test," I found that they were written in a way that I knew I would want to read further.

Now, I've devoured so many books, I've switched to the library to save money. I love going to the downtown Cleveland library. They always have what I want, and I can just run down on Sunday afternoon, park for free (unless there's a football game, I presume), and run in to grab what I want.

But, I will try to get some writing done. Maybe I'll do drawings on all of these books that I'm reading?

Friday, September 26, 2008

Yankee Peddler Festival

I love all of the great craft shows that happen in the fall. I'd never gone to the Yankee Peddler festival, but I made a point of going the last Sunday it was open. There were so many great craftspeople there, and I have to say that it took all of my willpower to not buy anything, especially the festival food. I refrained from the funnel cakes, shortcakes, popcorns, elephant ears, fries, okay, but you can tell, I did look closely at all of that stuff!
I've been eating what is technically low glycemic. With that, I wouldn't eat anything that they had there, being that they all had white flour or sugar in them.
I've been very good for many weeks now. And, I've lost 29 pounds! I'm not seeing it or feeling it just yet, but we'll keep going. Another ten pounds, and I think there will be some clothes that I won't be able to wear anymore.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Power Outage

Was sitting waiting for the power to come back on at work, and did this sketch of a store across the street, who ironically did have power.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

At the Museum

Enjoyed a quiet morning at the museum today. Not many people were there, except for a class, and a set of parents who were letting their toddlers scream bloody murder through all of the galleries.

I didn't do any sketching there, because I thought that the art history class would work it's way through my line of vision. Instead, I snapped a couple of photos to work from at home. Plus, that meant that I could to some watercolor wash as soon as I had my sketch done. I would have had to have done that at home anyhow, because only pencil is allowed in the museum.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Donuts: The Beginning

Working on another junk food piece. So far, I haven't done a whole lot on it. Have had it sketched out for a little while, and took a few strokes to see where I wanted to start. I have a nice thin layer of pastel on the pink donut. Will be doing many more layers, and looking forward to all of the pretty colors on the sprinkles.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Verdant Walk/Sketchcrawl

Went to the sketchcrawl today, and did a quick drawing of the pods that are downtown right now. I chose them, because we had just been down to Mall A a few weeks before and drew the fountain, so I wanted something completely different. You can read the journaling inside the picture if you want to know more about the public art installation. But, for me, I definitely want to see them at night when they are all lit up. It was good to see the sketchcrawlers again today, after such a long absence (it seemed long). Hopefully I can get there next month as well. Will keep my fingers crossed.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Popcorn Shop

The sky was dark, and it was actually chilly this morning with the strong winds. But, Blaine and I still wanted to go to sketch, so we settled into the coffee shop at Shaker Square, and in one half of the place, it was a popcorn shop. So, I drew the popcorn machine.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


Was meeting up with my mother yesterday in order to see the Vatican Splendors exhibit at the Western Reserve Historical Museum. She found a bus trip that brought her in. They were going to stop for lunch, and I waited at the nearby Starbucks until her bus arrived. Since I don't drink coffee, I just sat and drew their little station. It hit me as odd that people who buy coffee at starbucks order such complicated coffees, and yet still have to do more customization on their drinks before they leave with them. I had a solid string of people blocking my view to add more stuff into their coffees.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Memorial Plaza

Wasn't able to go to the sketchcrawl yesterday, but the last 2 weeks, I have met a friend to go sketching on Sundays. This week, we had planned to go to the Eastman reading garden, but Memorial Plaza had some shade to sit in. There was a pleasant breeze coming down from the lake. I drew the fountain. Then, when we were cutting through the garden again, the beggar squirrel came up to us. It was the first time I actually had food with me when he was around. I had some leftovers from the House of Blues. To which I found out, squirrels don't like french fries. He came up to the fry I was holding, sniffed it quite a bit, but wouldn't take it.
Or, maybe he was upset, because it was no longer hot? Or, because he's watching his carbs and cholesterol?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Largest Flower in the World

Bubble Tea

What goes with sweet and savory buns more than Bubble Tea?

Reckless Bun Selection

We went to Koko's Bakery in Chinatown yesterday after drawing in Wade Oval, and I saw what was a very funny sign above the sweet and savory bun case. It said, "Please select your bun carefully." As if either there was just reckless bun selection going on, or as if it was the scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade where they were trying to figure out which goblet was the Holy Grail. No need to be too selective, as all the buns are really good.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Wade Oval

Was down at Wade Oval this morning with my friend, Blaine, and we drew around the lagoon. She drew some of the sculptures, and I drew the church on the west side of the lagoon, not sure the name of it. I hadn't sketched outside like that for a while, so I was a bit out of practice. Plus, there were a lot of distractions with the geese, fish, and even mounted police. Beautiful day, though. It was pleasant and mild in the morning, didn't get hot until closer to 1:30.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Mamma Mia!

This is a really bad rendering of Meryl Streep (my numb hand got really shaky when Id id her face in ink), but you can see that I did go to see the movie yesterday. The movie was fine, but not great. The girl playing Sophia seemed to have learned acting from a driver's ed teacher in North Dakota, or something. She was just over acting too much. It did have some funny parts.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


So, I wanted to do a drawing today, but my hand just wasn't doing well. I had a couple days where it seemed to feel better and stronger, but today it was very uncomfortable again. But, I wanted to put something in the sketchbook, so I did this ink thing of Tom Petty.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Lisa Marie

This is a little dark, because I had to take a photo of it. All of a sudden, my scanner decided that it would just stop working. I've tried reinstalling the driver 4 times now, so I think that something may actually be wrong with it.

Here is a little sketch I did earlier today. My line work is a bit shaky, as my hand still isn't working, but I really missed doing little sketches in my Moleskine. I hadn't done one in there for almost 2 months. I want to do more, and I will probably just get used to my hand not working entirely.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


So, I came home today, and the corridor on my floor smelled funny. I get in my apartment & my next door neighbor left a message about how there was a fire and they were banging on my door but I wasn't answering. I went to slip a note under their door to thank them for checking on me, and the security guard was in the hallway. He said that the guy next door to me had fallen asleep while he was cooking. I'm assuming on a couch or something, not over the stove. My apartment did smell funny, so I burned a herbal candle for quite a while to get the smell out.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Hello, long time no post.

Wanted to give you an update on my hand. I saw a neurologisit today that said, "I'd have to be a complete moron not to be able to diagnosis you."

It's ulnar nerve damage, and he said that the nerve should grow back on its own. I'm supposed to come back in 2 months if it doesn't feel better, or sooner if it gets worse. I'm also supposed to stop resting on my elbows.

I should be drawing again later this week. I have a few projects in mind that I want to have done before the end of the August. Plus, I had a wacky dream last night that I want to do a sketch of in my moleskine.

See you soon.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


Okay, here's more candy. This is a pastel painting I did over the last week of chocolate and peach rings. The top is a little lighter than real life because of my easel lamp, but otherwise, it's very close to how it really looks.

I did this, because I just liked the idea of the really super-artifical and vibrant color candies on top of the more natural-looking chocolate. What I hadn't anticipated, but worked out well, was the really reflective quality of the chocolate.
Fingers still numb; it was very awkward to wear gloves while working on this, but I honestly think that my numb fingers are going to be a long-term thing. My appointment on July 15th isn't going to solve it, and somehow, I think I'm going to have to argue with a "live with it" mentality from the doctor. Because everytime I've had something wrong, that's what their opinion has been. "We can't figure it out, so live with it."

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Been Around

So, I haven't been drawing a whole lot lately. My fingers are still numb (another appointment on July 15th). My friend visited and we went on a whirlwind tour of Cleveland (Tom Petty concert, Rock Hall, zoo, Light Bistro, Sweeties Candies, to see Kung Fu Panda, and a late night at Kinko's--we know how to party!). And, now my computer has died, permanently. I might hit Kinko's tomorrow to update something to post.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Scenes From Louie's Life

I haven't been drawing a lot lately. I had to go to the doctor for some numbness in my right hand. They think it might be carpal tunnel, but to wear an elbow brace for a week and come back. I love how doctors never seem to know what's wrong with you. In fact, the first one said, "Do you know why this happened?" I wanted to say, "Well, I did self-exploratory surgery, and couldn't find anything so I figured that I'd come to you."
Well, here's a Louie, not sure how much I'll post in the next week.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Route 66

I did my 2nd Illustration Friday drawing today. It's a drawing of the teepee hotels on Route 66. This week's topic was Forgotten.

Thursday, June 5, 2008


Louie stares longingly outside of his habitat at the zoo, watching the children frolic and play.
He'd like a balloon and some cotton candy, too.
In answer to the question from the other day, Louie is the character of a children's book that I've been working on. What you see here are some beginning sketches and layouts.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


This is why I haven't posted a lot of little sketches lately, because I'd been working on the portrait of my parents for their 40th anniversary. Here it is all framed, before I took it to PA on Saturday.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Louie's Back

I've been thinking of my Louie story a whole lot lately, and I'm back to working it out. This is a little simple sketch of how it might go. I've done a few today, might post them over the next few days.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Tourist

This is my latest big project. I actually took this picture of my sister as a joke, because she had the camera permanently affixed in her hand like this no matter where we went.

I'm going today to draw with a friend down in Little Italy, so I should have some new things to show later tonight.

The dog auction went very well. My dog went for over twice what mine went for last year. It really sucked that one person didn't turn in their dog. But, it figured. It was the same woman who shut down her gallery, and didn't tell the artists that had consignment work in it. She had just trashed all the artwork; seemed to take great joy in smashing some of it. I guess it's a lesson. Between what happened there, and what happened with Arts Collinwood, an artist has to always be on guard. It's hard to protect ones self, especially in the incident with Arts Collinwood, where it was just one guy who robbed the organization, the rest of the people are good, honest people with the best intentions.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

No Drawing Today

I'm working on a big project right now, so I haven't had any little drawings to post for a while. I might catch up with Illustration Friday tomorrow, if I have a few minutes. But, I just wanted to post to update things. The dog auction to benefit the Friends of the Cleveland Kennel is tomorrow night. Also, I'm not a reality show junkie, but I alternate watching Top Chef and Project Runway throughout the year. I'm thoroughly convinced that my liking a personality one of those shows is a sure-fire death wish. As you saw with my drawing, on the last Project Runway, Chris March was my favorite, human hair dresses and all. First Top Chef was Dave. Top Chef Sam Talbot. Nick Verros from Project Runway. Top Chef's CJ. Yeah, they were all cut loose. So, it was no surprise when Dale was cut this week from the current Top Chef. I really thought it would be Richard and Dale in the finale, and I like them both. Oh, well.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Bull(fighter) Terrier Complete

I'm all finished with the Bull(fighter) Terrier. He'll be up for auction on Friday, May 23rd at the Galleria from 7-10pm. He and his brother and sister ceramic dogs will benefit the Friends of the Cleveland Kennel, which gives homeless pets in the Cleveland area a second chance. The event is $12 in advance through The Friends of the Cleveland Kennel or $15 at the door that night. Parking under the Galleria will be $3, but at that time, there should be plenty of free street parking. The event will also include music, silent auction, food, and drink. This is the 4th year that I've participated, and the 3rd ceramic dog that I've designed. Hope to see everyone there. It's a great evening, with lots of fun and excitement.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Bull(fighter) Terrier

This is what I was up to this weekend. I'm designing a ceramic dog for an auction benefiting the Friends of the Cleveland Kennel. The auction is Thurs, May 23 at the Galleria. I've done this for the past 4 years, and I always have a lot of fun seeing friends that night and looking at all of the wonderful dogs that area artists, craftspeople, and others have made. I still have a little work left to do for him, as I want to design him a matador's hat, probably out of polymer clay. I'll post more information as we get closer to the date.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Convention Center

Today's sketchcrawl was at the Cleveland Convention Center. I drew one of the fancy ticket booths in the white lobby. I did a background that I don't think was entirely successful, but since my angels are off on the booth, I don't think it matters all that much.

Friday, May 2, 2008


I'd never done an Illustration Friday challenge, but I've looked at them for weeks. "Long time viewer, first time illustrator." This week's challenge was "Seed." And, nothing says "Seed" to me more than a fluffy dandelion.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


I know that he doesn't look like much, but I'm proud of this little guy. I think I might go this route for the lemur project.

Friday, April 18, 2008

More Columbus

This is another scene from the hotel window. I didn't have time to do the color when it was light, and finished it after dark one night. So, if you compared it to the actual scene, it wouldn't mat probably at all. But, it's cute. I had planned to do some journaling in the big empty sky space, but I didn't have much to say. What was I going to say?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

State House

I was in Columbus for work for a few days, and drew this site outside my hotel window.
Didn't have much time, so there's not a whole lot there, but I did finish another one that I'll post later.