Friday, January 31, 2020

Irish music

We had stopped at a random inn to grab a bite before traveling a few more miles to our hotel in Cork City. As we ate our fish and chips the pub changed from a quiet room to a crowded circle of musicians. This was not a specially scheduled evening performance, these are all local musicians who gather informally to drink a pint and have a fun session. One fiddler picks up a tune, another instrument takes it further and then all join in.
I love Irish music.

And just a note, it's hard to draw musical instruments and musicians in action.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

music and magic

“Ah, music,” he said, wiping his eyes. “A magic beyond all we do here!”
– J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

“We do not need magic to transform our world. We carry all of the power we need inside ourselves already.”
– J.K. Rowling

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Ireland blessing

“Ireland, it's the one place on earth that heaven has kissed with melody, mirth, and meadow and mist.”
― Irish Blessing

Monday, January 27, 2020


"You can't do sketches enough. Sketch everything and keep your curiosity fresh." John Singer Sargent

Saturday, January 25, 2020

wet and wildness

“What would the world be, once bereft
Of wet and of wildness? Let them be left,
O let them be left, wildness and wet;
Long live the weeds and the wilderness yet.”
― Gerard Manley Hopkins, Gerard Manley Hopkins: The Complete Poems

Friday, January 24, 2020

garden party

I was in Ireland in late July and August. Our hosts lamented that the weather had been very hot, possibly dooming the potato harvest!
We live in the Midwest and are accustomed to hot summers and so the misty rainy mornings and gentle sunny afternoons seemed green and delicious.
I picked flowers wherever I could and made little paintings in my sketchbook during evening teatime.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

magic and memory

I have a lot of sketches and paintings in my backlog of sketchbooks from our long vacation trip to Ireland. This is now a magical memory because we traveled in 2018. Where did the time go? I have meant to scan all these and get them on my sketch blog all of last year.
Ireland was magical, I often felt that the fairy stories from my favorite books were just about to come to life. Beauty was all around us, delights and views large and small created a dreamlike series of days.
Memories of music and dance, museums, churches, pubs and narrow cobbled streets came home with me in these sketchbooks.

Sketch and paint everywhere and the life you lived and saw will last long.

“Ah, music,” he said, wiping his eyes. “A magic beyond all we do here!”
– J.K. Rowling 
(Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

sketching in the Senate chambers

Listening to the historic Impeachment trial speeches today brought this memory up. In 2015 I was a tourist in Washington DC. We were invited to visit the Senate Chamber through an Indiana Congressman Dan Coats. 
I was most impressed that day with a Senator who gave a long and impassioned speech about family values. He was not very tall, had a head of fluffy white hair and a very pink face. I learned that he was Bernie Sanders, a Senator from Vermont and was intending to declare his intent to run for president. Also I was told he gave long speeches like this all the time even if no one is listening. As you can see in my sketch, most of the other senators had left the chamber as he was speaking.
You know I would love to be a sketch artist allowed into such important meetings.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

misty moisty morning

One misty, moisty morning
When cloudy was the weather,
I chanced to meet an old man
Clothed all in leather.
He began to compliment,
And I began to grin,
How do you do, how do you do?
And how do you do again?
The Only True 
Mother Goose Melodies (c. 1833)

Saturday, January 18, 2020

in the moment

“All that is important is this one moment in movement. Make the moment important, vital, and worth living. Do not let it slip away unnoticed and unused.”
― Martha Graham

Vacation memories, living in the moment.

Friday, January 17, 2020

dance as you can

The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can. – Neil Gaiman

Thursday, January 16, 2020

unusual companions

I was fascinated by these iguanas in Cancun Mexico. Smallish dinosaurs next to modern day tourists with their cell phones.

Some quick observation sketches and a longer look at a photo I took with the cell phone.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

traveling companions

This winter has been so pleasant so far. And I assure you that the words pleasant and winter have never been used together in a sentence written or spoken by me ever before this.  (I'm known for my moaning and complaining about winter.)
My daughters decided to take a trip to a resort in Cancun, Mexico this January and included me!
I am still glowing with the golden sun memories. I painted on the beach and by the pool and while we ate delicious treats in restaurants. It was all very very good.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020


The soul is healed by being with children.
Fyodor Dostoyevsky

 Life has changed a great deal for me as an artist and as a human living my life in this past year.
I am now a grandmother and I take this role very seriously, it is a great privilege to be part of the lives of these new little people.

These sketches are from a  series of trips taken to the Art Institute of Chicago with my eldest granddaughter age 6.

On our first visit she requested that we see  the art of Picasso, a name she knew from books. We looked at all the wonderful Picassos and sketched in our books together.
This makes keeping an active  membership all the more meaningful. I look forward to many more such events together.

Friday, January 10, 2020


To draw, you must close your eyes and sing.
- Pablo Picasso