Rush Ranch Horses, Sepia Copic Multiliner and watercolor wash

Rush Ranch Horses, Sepia Copic Multiliner and watercolor wash

Mariah, a wonderful young artist, accompanied me to my plein air group’s paint-out today at Rush Ranch in Suisin City. She was immediately inspired by a spot, sat down and started sketching. I faced the opposite direction and sketched these horses in the corral.

Before we’d left my house, I showed her a book on drawing animals that demonstrated how to first find and assemble the basic shapes contained in the animal (rectangles, circles, triangles) and then refine them. I decided to practice what I preached and did that with the horses. I’d never noticed what big knees horses have before. I sketched with my sepia Copic Multiliner .03 and then added watercolor washes.

Rush Ranch Vista, ink & watercolor wash

Rush Ranch Vista, ink & watercolor wash

The views from Rush Ranch were tremendous. I could have sketched for hours more but we’d arrived late and after our second sketches it was time for the group critique and lunch.

We were late because I got lost yet again (missed the turnoff and drove forever before turning around — and this was with GPS!) My mind had wandered to thinking about the people fishing (and the fish) in the slough off the little bridge we’d just passed so I missed the entrance sign and decided that the GPS telling me I’d arrived was wrong. This was especially stupid since the printed directions from my group said to go over that bridge and then turn right in 3/4 mile.

Instead I drove and drove, went over another bridge and THEN started looking for the turnoff. I went miles past that bridge, eventually arriving at the gate to a “youth correctional facility” (jail for teens) and admitted I’d blown it again. When we finally found our way back and I saw the huge “Rush Ranch” sign, I couldn’t believe I’d missed it.

Well actually I could believe it. I think I could get lost just walking from one room to another these days!

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Category:
Animals, Art supplies, Art theory, Bay Area Parks, Drawing, Ink and watercolor wash, Landscape, Life in general, Outdoors/Landscape, Painting, Places, Plein Air, Sketchbook Pages
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Join the conversation! 7 Comments

  1. I love these sketches! I haven’t found a sepia pen I’m happy with yet but now will have to try the Copic multiliner. Enjoyed the story too, I get lost easily too! My husband tells me I have absolutely no sense of direction – and I guess it’s true.

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    • Hi Sarah, I’ve proved to the point of no doubt about my lack of sense of direction and have learned to just go with the flow and not get upset with the extra time or embarassed by the foolishness. Now I try to look at it as an adventure, and often discover sights I wouldn’t have otherwise seen. I’ve learned to allow a little extra time.

      I’m going to be testing some sepia pens today or tomorrow and will post my experience with them. The Copics are a little harder to find and are more expensive, but they sure are sweet to draw with. Jana

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  2. Jana…I really like these two sketches! They’re loose, colorful, and vividly convey the feeling of both subjects. Thanks for sharing the pointers on a way to sketch animals. I’m sure I’ve read that before, but it’s been a while and it had slid to the back of my brain. You’re tempting me to try one of those Copic pens, but I hesitate because I remember trying regular Copics years ago and they were too powerful for me….bled thru most papers.

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    • Thanks Rita! These pens do have a bit thicker point than I’m used to and the ink does flow quite freely so it forces a quick hand. My sketchbook paper is pretty thick. I’ll do a test today of sepia pens (I’ve been trying various brands) and will include bleeding through the page and let you know if the Copics still do that. Jana

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  3. Well, despite getting lost, you certainly made the most of the day. Sounds fun.

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  4. Great sketches Jana – it was good to see Mariah join in the fun on Saturday. One of these days I’m going to go to the Grizzley Island Reserve and see what views that has (maybe in the Fall). Sometimes you see the neatest things when you get lost!

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  5. I’m glad that someone else out there has as bad a sense of direction as I do…You more than make up for it in your artistic sensibility though, Jana! These are wonderfully loose – it looks like an amazing place too.

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