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Sketchcrawl 46 – Bernal Heights, San Francisco

SF Bernal Heights Sketchcrawl (original) ink and watercolor in XL WC Moleskine
SF Bernal Heights Sketchcrawl, ink, watercolor, gouache, 7.5 x 11″

When it was time to leave for the Sketchcrawl in San Francisco I couldn’t find my sketch kit containing all my favorite sketching tools. I scoured the studio and the house. No sketch kit. I feared I’d left it at my figure drawing class the day before at the community college where it had probably already been adopted by a needy art student. Sad and frustrated, I cobbled together some pens, pencils, brushes and paints, threw them in a bag and drove across the Bay Bridge to San Francisco.

Catching up with my friend Susan Cornelis who came down from Sebastopol for the day, and connecting with some other local sketch buddies helped me forget about my missing precious pens and paints for a little while. Since I was so late, after a quick walk around the neighborhood, I decided to sketch what I could see from a bench on the porch in front of the library where the final meet up would be. The lamp post in the sketch above was up on the porch too, which is a little confusing perspective-wise, being up about 8 steps from the sidewalk in this hilly neighborhood.

The good news is that I had a great time at the sketch crawl AND the next day when I was getting ready to go out to the studio I picked up the basket I use to carry things back and forth from house to studio and my sketch kit was in the basket! YAY! And I put a “Reward for return” note in the bag with my name and phone number on it in case it ever disappears again.

I think I like the sketch better broken into two separate ones (below). What do you think?

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Sketchcrawl San Francisco Part 1: Coit Tower

Coit Tower, from Levi Plaza, SF Sketchcrawl 40, ink & watercolor 7x5"
Coit Tower, from Levi Plaza, SF Sketchcrawl 40, ink & watercolor 7×5″

The San Francisco Sketchcrawl was so much fun and had a great turnout of around 75 people. It was great seeing old friends and meeting new ones. This was actually my last sketch of the day, finished just before our 4:00 meetup.

Micaela and I were going to walk the hundreds of stairs up to Coit Tower to draw it but got distracted by all the other events going on along the Embarcadero on our way. We realized there a was a great view of the tower from inside Levi Plaza, a beautiful, somewhat hidden park that I’d like to return to for more sketching.

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International Sketchcrawl 35: San Francisco, Part I

Waiting with flowers at MacArthur BART Station
Waiting with flowers at MacArthur BART Station (sketched standing on the platform and color added at home)

Sketchcrawl 35 was fantastic! The weather in San Francisco was unusually beautiful, warm and sunny and there was so much to see and do. I’m posting the sketches in three parts since what we saw in each part of the day was so different.  Part I covers the trip into the city through lunch.

Reading an Actual BOOK on BART
Reading an Actual BOOK on BART (paint added at home)

So rare to see someone reading a real book and not just fidgeting with their digital whatevers.

He reminded me of Jay and Silent Bob in Clerks
He reminded me of Jay from the movie Clerks

The guy in the sketch above reminded me so much of the slacker Jay from the movie Clerks I had to post this photo of him and Silent Bob below.

Jay and Silent Bob in Clerks
Jay and Silent Bob in Clerks

Thank goodness for the Internet or I would have been saying, “Doesn’t he look just like that guy in that movie….” and had no photo to show you.

Cathy and another sketcher at Caffe Trieste in North Beach
Cathy and another sketcher at Caffe Trieste in North Beach (sketched and painted on site)

Cathy was sitting at my sidewalk table sketching someone behind me so I sketched her while the group gathered at Caffe Trieste, the starting point for the sketchcrawl. There was scaffolding over the entryway, which provided an interesting drawing challenge.

Molinari's Deli where we bought lunch
Molinari’s Deli where we bought lunch (sketched in the store, painted at home)

Cathy and I bought lunch for later and then stood in opposite corners of the store to sketch the counter guys at Molinari’s Deli in North Beach. (Click the link to Molinari’s to see the picture prominently displayed in their store of their salame with the Pope). They turned up their radio for the end of the Barcelona vs. Madrid soccer finals. It was fun hearing the super-excited announcer yelling the play-by-play in Spanish as a player ran down the field, made a goal and won the game.

Part II will be my drawings from Dr. Sketchy’s Tease-O-Rama and Part III is more in North Beach and Fisherman’s Wharf.

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Sketching the Week Away

Palace Hotel Garden Court detail, Copic Multiliner
Palace Hotel Garden Court detail, Copic Multiliner

After an all day meeting in San Francisco on Wednesday I met art buddy Sonia for some sketching at the Palace Hotel’s Garden Court atrium. It’s a stunning and historical room but detail lover that I am, I chose one tiny spot across the room to draw and then spent an hour on it, while Sonia did 4 or 5 sketches.

Palace Hotel Garden Court
Palace Hotel Garden Court

I started with the furthest chandelier and the clock on the wall and just kept discovering more and more fun things to draw. If we weren’t so hungry and tired we could have stayed there all night sketching.

Chatting Over Coffee, ink
Two Ladies Chatting Over Coffee

The first lady just slid right off my pen, perfectly drawn (as I saw her) but her friend kept moving and I couldn’t get close to a  likeness.

Random subway sketches
Random BART Subway Sketches

More commuter sketches (and one eagle who adorns the top of the Oakland City Hall). My co-workers and I took advantage of a sunny and surprisingly quiet day at the office to walk to Oakland City Center for lunch (ergo the Bean and Cheese sticker) and I even had a moment to pull out my sketchbook.

That messy little boy top right was on a field trip but looked like he should have still been home in bed. And that’s where I should be too. It’s been a rocky week. Glad it’s over.

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Sketching with Martha & Shirley (St. Patrick’s San Francisco)

St. Patrick's Church, ink & watercolor 8x6"
St. Patrick's Church, San Francisco, ink & watercolor 8x6"

Shirley (Paper and Threads) was visiting San Francisco this week and Martha (Trumpetvine) and I had the pleasure of spending the afternoon sketching with her in the park. Poor St. Patrick’s Catholic Church isn’t really falling over despite the many earthquakes it has weathered over the years. It’s just my usual wonky drawing. Martha and Shirley will post their drawings on their own blogs eventually but here is a snapshot of our work lined up together.

Shirley's, Jana's and Martha's sketches
Shirley's, Jana's and Martha's sketches

And here we are lined up, with me a head taller and trying to take a photo and holding my iPhone at arm’s length.

Jana, Martha and Shirley
Jana, Martha and Shirley

We were joined virtually on our little art blogger sketchcrawl by phone  from Lisa in Texas and via Facebook (where I posted an update and photo while we were sketching) by Marta (MARTa’s Art) and EJ (Rose-Anglais) .

After sitting on cold concrete steps to sketch we were ready to warm up. We walked back to Shirley’s hotel, and she treated us to a glass of wine on the 39th floor of the Mariott Hotel (also known as the “Jukebox” building because of its unique architecture). Here’s the view from the bar just before sunset.

View from the hotel bar
View from the Marriott Hotel bar

It was such a treat to spend a Friday afternoon with these two very talented and beautiful women.  After the sun set in golds and pinks, and the lights of the city came on, I had to leave while they went off in search of dinner.  I BARTed to Oakland for the monthly Friday night “Art Murmur” gallery walk where my sister and niece had pieces in a show. Walking from BART I passed the grand old Paramount Theatre and set my camera to “burst” mode so I could capture the changing lights of the neon marquis.

Paramount 5
Paramount 1
Paramount 4
Paramount 2
Paramount 3
Paramount 3
Paramount 2
Paramount 4