Tuesday, May 3, 2016

May Sketching!

Since it's May, the Every Day in May sketch challenge has started.  This world-wide challenge has become bigger and bigger since it started years ago.  There are over a thousand people in the Facebook Group, and there is also a Flickr Group with over 5000 posts of sketches.  The idea is to do something creative every day for the month of May.

For EDM there is a list of topics for each day to get sketchers started.  A lot of topics on the list are "prompts", rather than specific objects so we can be more creative.  It's really fun to see how different artists interpret the same topic.  I'm always thinking I should do more sketching so last year I tried the EDM challenge.  I enjoyed using some other media than my usual watercolors but I only lasted 10 days.  We'll see how many sketches I will do this year, and of course it's OK to do what you can...having fun is the goal.

May 1, 2016, a toy

May 1, 2015, a favorite food
  

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Virtual Paintout - Sri Lanka!

The Virtual Paintout for April 2016 was in Sri Lanka!  Wow, what an exciting country to see.  While under British Colonial rule the tiny island country near India was known as Ceylon.  It's been named Sri Lanka since 1972 when it became a republic.

I never have enough time to look around using Google Street View as I would like.  I try to look for something that appeals to me to paint while depicting a characteristic view of the place.  When I found a colorful temple and also a peaceful river scene, I couldn't top the two views for my two paintings.

5" x 7" Gouache


5" x 7 " Watercolor

 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Roses!

I did a recent post about the azaleas blooming at the museum.  Today is a watercolor about the roses at Lacy Park.  With the park in San Marino on the paint-out schedule for April, I was planning to paint some roses in the arbor area where there are hundreds of rose bushes.  I was looking forward to trying maybe a closer look at some flowers.  On my visit last year, I painted the arbor structure from a distance, Park Roses.  Much to our surprise, the rose garden was completely off limits to visitors, barricades blocked the entrances.  We heard that a they are rebuilding the arbor supports which are badly deteriorated from age, weather, and termites.  Outside of the arbor,  I found some shade on one side with a view of some roses so I was happy.

8" x 10" Watercolor




    

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Goodbye Buster's

Yes, this is Buster's final week before changing owners.  Buster's Coffee Stop has been a local favorite in South Pasadena for thirty years.  This city landmark is located at one of our main intersections, near the light rail Mission Station.  Over twenty years ago, our daughter Christa designed Buster's well known smiling coffee cup logo.

Buster's and the picturesque surrounding area is a favorite for plein air painters.  So many artists have painted Buster's over the years that I've always thought the shop should have a show of the paintings.  There would be hundreds.  I've painted there quite a few times in the years I've been going on paint-outs with the local groups.  This was a gouache piece from a few years ago, Buster's.  In January the group was there and I included Buster's in my gouache piece that day.  We'll all miss Buster's.

5" x 7" Gouache




The smiling coffee cup by Christa Schmidt



Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Azaleas!

A few Saturdays ago the plein air group met at the Pasadena Museum of History.  It was a perfect day for painting.  The main museum building is the 1906 Feynes Mansion which I haven't attempted to paint yet.  I don't think any of us knew that the azaleas surrounding one of the fountains would be so beautifully blooming.  I love the fountain area's dappled light, and have painted there a few times.  The watercolor I painted on my visit in July, South Side, was painted from this area.  Although this view below is similar to my previous piece, the spectacular azaleas had to be painted this time.

8" x 10" Watercolor



1906 Feynes Mansion
    

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Verdugo Adobe

A recent post was a watercolor painted at a park I hadn't visited before.  Today's piece is from a recent plein air paint-out at an historic adobe I hadn't known about.  It's in Glendale, California, the Catalina Verdugo Adobe.  Built in 1828 at the base of the Verdugo Hills, the adobe was named for Jose Verdugo's daughter, Catalina.  It's in a beautiful shady park located in a lovely residential neighborhood.

The adobe was a simple structure, just a main room and covered porch.  The shadows on the south side of the building caught my eye.   I also liked the simple cactus garden there and decided to give that view a try.    

8" x 10" Watercolor


Our paintings lined up for the discussion  

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Green Umbrellas

The Plein Aires paint-out group was back at the Arboretum for our quarterly planning meeting.  It's always fun to discuss future painting locations.  The hour-plus planning leaves limited time to do a watercolor before meeting back at the cafe.  After our previous meeting I painted Watercolor Greenhouse.  This time we only had a little over an hour to walk to find something we would like to paint.  I knew of a patio close by which I had tried painting quite awhile ago which didn't go well.  Maybe I could do a better job now.  There were bright green umbrellas and a few people at the tables, sitting enjoying the nice weather.  This watercolor went more as I had in mind.  Will probably try it again!

8' x 10" Watercolor