Monday, October 19, 2015

Camden, Maine...Fall Colors

My wife and I are just back from a trip that took us to both Maine and Vermont. My wife went to do some shopping. I went to sketch, paint, and do photography.

Camden, Maine, our base during our time in Maine, is a beautiful and quaint town. The village is home to a large fleet of schooners that, during the summer months, take travelers aboard to visit and enjoy the surrounding Maine landscape and islands by sail. By mid October many of the boats that populate Camden's harbor have been pulled for the winter. That said, while there, Camden's harbor remained busy with boats coming and going and tourists crowding the town's shops and restaurants. Then too, Camden, and the surrounding area was blooming into a palette of full fall color. This piece was done on a chilly morning and depicts Camden's crowded and busy inner harbor.

Sunday, October 18, 2015


Last Thursday I had a meeting in downtown KC, and on my way back I stopped at the "Artist's and Craftsman's Supply" on Southwest Boulevard and discovered a great new paper. Shizen watercolor paper. A local company named "Shizen Design" makes it, or has it made to their specifications, in India. At any rate, I recommend that you give it a's wonderful. Here's their website:

This painting was done on my new Shizen paper - a small 8" by 8" piece with deckle edges. I approached this painting with some specific goals in mind.
#1: I wanted to keep a very limited palette to help maintain a definitive mood. So, I stuck with ultramarine, a little cobalt blue, raw sienna, burnt sienna and some gamboge.
#2: I wanted to keep all washes/colors fresh, so I made sure the previous wash was dry before applying the next layer. I think there's maybe 4 total washes.
#3: I wanted to create a more dynamic composition than what I found in nature. In order to achieve this, I extended the buildings on the right and left sides up to the top of the paper to frame the higher key center. I also added a darker wash to the upper portion of the sky to help create a value contrast with the central area and the bright yellow tree.

I'm pleased with the outcome, and look forward to my next painting on Shizen paper.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Dairy Queen with ink and more

By Marcia Milner-Brage, Cedar Falls, Iowa

Dairy Queen Inside

The DQ on 18th Street here in Cedar Falls, Iowa, has been on my to-draw list for a couple years. It looks like a red barn you'd see in the Iowa countryside. The large oak tree behind it was always a big part of my attraction to this place. I sat in the parking lot, working from the passenger seat of the car. It's been unseasonably warm this fall. I had the windows down. The grass is still green, yet the trees are starting to change.

I'm participating in the #inktober drawing challenge--an ink drawing a day for the whole month. This was Day 6. Here's what the drawing looked like when it was more just ink:

DQ as ink drawing
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