Saturday, August 30, 2014

Pig Heaven

Trying to draw pigs at Pigs Peace Sanctuary in Stanwood yesterday was a challenge and a joy. What a wonderful place! The sanctuary is home to 190 rescued pigs, a horse, llama, a couple of goats, lots of barn cats and a very passionate and hardworking lover of pigs named Judy Woods, director and founder of the nonprofit.

The property was a dairy farm in a former life. The setting is amazingly beautiful and pastoral - straight out of a storybook.  It is a happy place for pigs - many of which had some not-so-happy beginnings - coming from laboratories, hoarders, zoos and a myriad of inhumane situations. Many of the pigs had never touched grass before arriving at the sanctuary. Thirty of them are regular farm pigs and the rest are pot-bellied pigs.

Some pigs have a talent for modeling work and some don't. Charlotte is a natural. A real ambassador for Pigs Peace, she obliged us by taking a long contented nap in the wood chips right next to the fence where we could get a good look at her and barely moved. 

Charlotte's Nap
 I thought Charlotte was the only sketch I had to post, but today I decided to see if I could salvage some of my "partial pig" ink drawings that I abandoned when the subject changed positions. I added some color and kind of liked the results. 

Otis eats an apple

I was intrigued by some of the pigs' golden eyelashes.
Pigs have great eyelashes.

I loved this place. I hope we can help Judy and the pigs by allowing them to use images of the sketches we did there for cards or in some way to support marketing and fundraising efforts. You will definitely see some of these sketches at our upcoming exhibit at the Bayview Cash Store's farm show, "When Your Plow is a Paintbrush II" opening Friday, Sept. 5.

Pig Peace Sanctuary

Another successful outing for the WISkers. Who knew a pig sanctuary would be such a....well.....such a sanctuary! Owner and pig whisperer, Judy, gave us an informative tour and introduced us to many of her 150 pigs. We came prepared for mud and stink. Neither was in evidence anywhere. The place was neat, clean, fresh and populated with happy pigs. A high point was when Judy wheeled out a huge container of carrots and instructed us to fling them onto a giant concrete patio below where we were standing. She rang a bell as we flung and pigs of all sizes came running from every direction. Everyone looked so joyful flinging carrots for pigs! Sketching pigs was not so easy. I have many pages of undecipherable lines. There are two sketches of Charlotte because she laid down right next to the fence and didn't move very much. Thank you Charlotte. And thank you Judy for the work you do and for hosting us so wonderfully.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Jan's Colorful patio table

Sketching at a log home near Whidbey Shores and enjoying the most wonderful company and beautiful day.  My daughter joined us to get a taste of Mom's Friday afternoons with the Sketchers group.  Kathi pointed out the other view of the table reflected in Jan's studio window.  I'm all about seeing with different eyes, so had to try this challenge.

From the Deck (Jon deWit glass piece)

Reflection in the studio window.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Sherryl's summer table

I just found this while cleaning out my art supplies.  The pretty table cloth and flowers that Sherryl had out for us one day.
Bright sunny day and happy tablecloth at Sherryl's!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Pettis Barnyard Scramble?

What can I say? There's nothing here that looks remotely like a sheep, but I decided to keep drawing as my subjects moved about and see what I could get out of this collection of abstract rumps. I think the chickens saved it.

Sketching at Juniper Beach Cabin

I  did a little sketching at a family feast on a hot Saturday afternoon. There is a serious dearth of shade in this little yard. I sketched what I could from my little slice of shade. There were lots of young people at the party, too, but let's face it, old people don't move as much. So I sketched them.

A nice still life in the corner of the yard with float, birdhouses and stump

Robe hold his empty plate and chats
Lisa and Fred

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Pettis Sheep Farm - shed & peach tree

Tahoma Zen Monastery

The weather was perfect, the woods were quiet and filled with sketchers, the sun was sparkling on the water, the tree limb hanging down created a special shady space. What can I say? I had moments of feeling at peace with everything. 

Claudia Pettis' Farm

I can't add much to what Barb said about this wonderful orchard and animal sanctuary, except to say that animals sure don't make it easy to draw them! They just won't sit still and pose. I finally had to tackle something stationery so went for that sweet little pear tree. Somewhere along the way way I ate a peach and it catapulted me right back to my childhood. Suddenly I was 8 years old standing under the peach tree by our driveway in Portland Oregon taking a bite from a sweet, warm, juicy, dripping peach. My mom is standing at the kitchen window watching me. Time travel by taste buds! Thank you Claudia, for this delightful afternoon. 

A Rainy Day in Langley Town

A couple of friends, from my old watercolor days in Seattle, came over the other day to sketch with me. To get out of the rain we sat under the awning in front of The Commons, drank coffee, got caught up on each other's lives, and sketched what we could see from there. It was a sweet, cozy, comfortable kind of day. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Claudia Pettis' Welsh Sheep

Were I a sheep, I'd want to be Claudia's.  She provides exquisite forever homes to her ewes ... some had snowy noses and Chuck said they were very old ladies.  Sweet, gentle, friends with beautiful chickens who scratched the dirt amongst the sheep.  (I recently read that chickens scratch the dirt, eat the insects, and lower the fly problems around farm animals.  Well ... I saw beautiful chickens, some bees ... included mason bee homes provided nearby ... and no flies!)  Apples, pears, peaches galore.  What a natural haven.  Thank you Claudia & Chuck!  This sketch was an experiment ... I accidentally grabbed print paper rather than water color.  It both grabbed the paint, changing the texture, and softened the edges.  Oh well!  Trying a new illustration-like style, too, just to change things out.  Looks like these beautiful black sheep are snoozing, and eh ... counting sheep!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

A Peaceful Day at the Monastery

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Tahoma Zen Monastery

Inside the shrine room at Tahoma Zen Monastery - most complicated still-life ever!

Monday, August 11, 2014

 Sketch of pond at Tahoma Zen Monastery.....bird atop Mary's house...............

                             Kathy R.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

The Tahoma Zen Monastery

It was fun to meet up with WISk at the Zen Monastery in Freeland.  Here's my sketch of the pond.  Thanks, WISK, for a very enjoyable summer sketch day!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Sherman Farm, Coupeville

Beautiful barn at Sherman Farm.

Flowers for Mom

 A couple of sketches from my yard for Mom.

Annabelle Hydrangas
Shasta Daisies and Tall Garden Phlox

The Color Purple

I joined the Anacortes Sketchers for an afternoon of sketching at Lavender Wind Farm last week. I love this color. I even had purple ink in my Lamy.

Lavender wreath making in progress
Quick and dirty effort at the end of the sketching day

Lavender Field

The Lake at Tahoma Zen Monastery

After completing my belabored rendering of the lake with water lilies in the foreground, I decided to try a quick, throwaway version of the same scene to see if I could simplify.  I think everyone liked the quick and dirty abstract version better.
Lake at the Monastery, as seen from the viewing platform
Fast and loose impression of the same scene

Friday, August 8, 2014

North Instead of South Today

Well, change in sketching plans today.  Had planned to sketch with the group at the Zen Monastery but didn't finish my work for a Monday morning meeting in time to head South.

So I threw my sketching stuff in the car and headed North instead.  After looking at carpet samples and flooring in Oak Harbor for a client, I headed out to the beach at Mariner's Cove.  Solitary sketching instead of with the group.  Sure not the same but better than nothing on this sunny summer afternoon.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

A Sketch from CLOUDSTONE

Monday, August 4, 2014


 We just returned from a completely delightful family week at Lake Chelan! I managed 3 little sketches in the crazy fun mix  of 3 generations and 3 families. Completely wonderful week!

 I found a few quiet moments sipping an elegant rose at Benson Vineyards. Smoke from wildfires colored the distant hills. 

                    Another oasis with cool breeze under a peach tree at Vin du Lac Vinyard and Bistro

Quick sketch from the boat with my 4 color minibox!  Delightful company, refreshing
swim, memorable!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Sketching at Cloudstone