Monday, February 20, 2012

Trip to Butte Valley

Yesterday we managed to get away for the day for a photography and sketching trip to Butte Valley. Turns out it was too cold to sit outside and sketch, but I did get some interesting shots with my camera. One of the reasons I like to go to Butte Valley is the wide open spaces there, the birds at the wildlife sanctuary and the dilapidated old farmhouses which make neat subjects to photograph. The late afternoon light was perfect to catch these subjects...

View of Shasta from the Valley

Butte Valley Airport with Shasta in the Background

This old house is a personal favorite. I keep coming back to photograph it and see what happens over time. The last time I was here was 4 years ago. Since then the roof has collapsed on the back side of the house and the property has become a storage place for irrigation pipe. Another old house we went back to see had been recently bulldozed. Sad.

This male American Kestrel was very coy and kept flying to the next power pole down the road every time I would get too close.

We have a female Kestrel that has become a frequent visitor to our ranch. But this is the first male I've seen.

This ubiquitous Red Tail Hawk was very annoyed with my attention.

I finally figured out that sitting in the back of the truck and a 'stealth' approach was needed.

We also saw a large bald eagle, but I wasn't able to get close enough for a good picture. Maybe next trip...

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sundial Bridge

Yesterday we took a day off and headed to Redding with no particular place in mind. On a fluke we stopped at the Shasta Dam and lucked into an amazing tour of the dam and the powerhouse. Will post more pictures on that later. After dinner we headed over to the Sundial Bridge where I tried out some night photography. I had forgotten my tripod so I had to get creative with only a 3" high ultrapod and weird camera angles and braces. It was fun to check out the bridge and the time exposures were fun to do as there were a lot of people out walking. I'd like to go back and see the Dr. Suess show at Turtle Bay before it leaves.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Friday, January 20, 2012

Siskiyou Golden Fair

In the spirit of trying to get caught up, I went back through my sketchbook and scanned these sketches from the Siskiyou Golden Fair last summer. I spent 3 days at the fair--2 days sketching and one evening doing photography. By the end of the third day I felt I had really hit my stride with the sketching and spent most of the day drawing in the poultry and rabbit buildings. I was pretty happy with the sketches and of course met lots of inquisitive and knowledgeable young people who were more than happy to give me details about their particular animal. I ended up doing all my sketching standing up and made notes about color and details and then took breaks by going outside to a bench to paint my sketches. I really enjoyed the fair and will probably end up going for 4 days this year!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Trying to Get Back in the Saddle...

Well I have been really lax in posting, so I'm trying to get back on track and start posting some images. During my absence I've been outdoor sketching quite a bit. Yesterday we got our first real snowfall here and I went inside to the Siskiyou County Museum, where I met up with a sketching buddy, Bob. We had a great time looking through the museum and trying to decide what to draw. I ended up tackling this fully outfitted covered wagon display. The light in the museum was dim so I made a mental note to bring a headlamp next time. There are tons of amazing artifacts in the museum to draw so I think I'll be heading back there soon, since our weather is not supposed to improve much over the next week or so.

I used Noodler's Lexington Grey ink in my trusty Lamy Safari EF fountain pen. Then Daniel Smith watercolors on top. This is in my 5.5" x 8" Pentalic bound sketchbook. That's why the amazing gutter in this picture. I am almost at the end of this book and I have to say I will be glad when I'm finished with it. The paper cockles badly with watercolor and the book is so swollen that it will hardly stay closed. I only have 4 more spreads in it and then I will start with one of the new books I have that are watercolor paper. I really love the idea of the bound book, but in this case it just has not worked out well for me. I've also had issues with bleed through on the thin paper, so I'm looking forward to working on a more substantial paper.

In October I went to Yreka for the WW SketchCrawl #33. Here are a couple of images I did that day...

This one I did from the parking lot across the street. I got a lot of people stopping and asking questions and just watching me draw. It was fun to have the little kids asking questions and just generally hanging out.

I did this one from inside the Audacity. I sat at a window table and had a really great mocha made by Carmen. Thanks Carmen!

Will post more images in the coming weeks....