Monday, October 11, 2021

More Architecture

A recent Saturday paint-out was at Pasadena's new Desiderio Park.  Not only is there a spectacular view of the 1912 Colorado Street Bridge but there's a nice view of the 1920 Vista Del Arroyo Hotel.  It's extensive and has many windows.  Lots of editing required to do a quick sketch.  I tried sketching with the pens I'm enjoying using.  I also added some watercolor.  My previous watercolor of the old hotel, now a U.S. Court of Appeals, A New Park.

A few weeks before, we met at Eliot Middle School in Altadena, architects Marston and Mayberry.   Our pieces are meant for a future auction to benefit the school.  My previous gouache piece of the school is here, Some Architecture.

7" x 5" Pens

5" x 7" Watercolor

Thursday, September 30, 2021

The Fountain and the Bridge

Two recent plein air pieces in gouache, both historical landmarks.  I've tried a few previous paintings at the Pasadena City Hall but never the Baroque style fountain in the beautiful courtyard.  It's over 22 feet tall with a 25 foot diameter basin.  I had to paint fast since my parking meter was running.  I would like to try it again sometime. 

Just last week we painted at the Oaklawn bridge in South Pasadena.  One of my previous watercolor pieces painted there, Greene Brothers' Only Bridge.  There was a lot of activity while we painted since it's time to get started on the South Pasadena float for the Rose Parade on New Year's Day.   It's fun to watch the Gold Line trains passing under the bridge as we paint.


5" x 7" Gouache

Pasadena City Hall

7" x 5" Gouache

South Pasadena Rose Parade float underway

Saturday, August 28, 2021

Bailey and Hermon

Bailey and Hermon are two of our local parks.  I've painted at both parks quite a few times with the local paint-out groups.  Hermon was on the schedule for possible Jacaranda trees in bloom.  They were there at the south end of the long park.  Unfortunately I drove by that area, paying more attention to the busy Saturday park traffic, and missing the lavender flowers.  Instead I painted an interesting hillside at the north end of the park.  Now I know where the Jacarandas are!

We usually go to Bailey Canyon Park to paint the Matilija poppies.  It turned out not to be a good year for the poppies.  Maybe not enough rain last winter.  So I painted another hillside with some friends to chat with.  

5" x 7" Watercolor

A very busy gopher we enjoyed watching

7" x 5" Watercolor

Matilija poppies


Thursday, August 26, 2021


 Succulents have been an interest of mine for many years.  It seems that they are more popular than ever now because of their relatively easy care and drought tolerance.  Of course they are also beautiful and have an amazing variety of shapes.  

I have two gouache pieces to post.  When we started painting together again I tried the wonderful fountain of succulents at Arlington Garden.  During our painting at home time I did a gouache piece of one of my aloe plants.  The challenge was a "close-up".  The aloes display some wonderful shapes and shadows for that theme.

7" x 5" Gouache

Succulent fountain past the Wishing Trees

7" x 5" Gouache

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Dabney Hall

One of my favorite places to paint is Caltech in Pasadena.  The Saturday group has painted there many times.  I was happy to be back there a few weeks ago.  The flowers were blooming, and people were there walking their dogs, some people cycling through the campus.

Dabney Hall (1929) always catches my eye.  It's sort of pink, just beautiful with its plantings of agapanthus surrounding the jacaranda trees.  My first gouache piece there was painted in 2013.  I painted another gouache of the building since two painting friends also decided to paint the view.   It's always fun to chat while painting!

News update - I'm trying to get a new email subscription service for this blog.  Current subscribers will need to resubscribe when it's active.  Thanks!

5" x 7" Gouache (2021)

7"  x  5" Gouache  (2013)

Beckman Auditorium (1964)

Beckman Auditorium (1964)


Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Roses Five Years Later

 It's so nice to be plein air painting again with friends.  In June we met at the Wrigley Mansion Rose Garden hoping to paint some roses of course.  The roses were beautiful as always.  It was almost exactly five years ago for one paint-out there, Wrigley Roses, when I painted a watercolor.  I tried a version in gouache this time.  

6" x 8" Gouache

Wrigley Mansion, north side

Monday, July 5, 2021

Sketch at the Library

 Our South Pasadena Public Library held a fun event recently.  On Saturday South Pasadena Beautiful held a Plant Swap there which was wonderful since we've missed garden tours for two years.  In conjunction, there was a Toy Swap and a Dollar Book Sale hosted by Friends of the Library.  There was a lot of activity!  I took some photos first to see what I might like to paint.  I noticed that the never-ending line of people waiting to enter the Book Sale made nice silhouettes.  I didn't take my paints that day so I did a sketch with pens I remembered to bring.  Beyond the line of people I could see the coffee house across the street.  I painted that view in Corner Coffee in 2017.  Great to be out with people again.

News ~ Google's email subscription service for blogs like mine will be ending.  My blog will continue but I'm not sure how much longer the email subscriptions will.  I hope I can find an alternative service.   

5" x 7" Pens