|1/7/15 various inks, watercolor, India ink with twig, Canson XL 140 lb. paper|
Arriving in Ballard a little early for an appointment, I drove around nearby streets looking for a sketch. Suddenly I spotted the back side of the Bardahl Oil sign, the front of which is easily visible from the Ballard Bridge on Northwest 15th. I was too cold to stand outside, so I pulled into the nearest parking lot (“employees and customers only”) and angled my car to see as much as I could of the famous sign (“which has been lighting up the Ballard skies since 1953,” according to the Ballard News-Tribune). A couple of trees, a bunch of parked cars, some bushes and a variety of other stuff was partially obstructing my view of the bright yellow barn-like building, so I had to fake it, but at least I had a clear view of the sign.
I love nostalgic signs like this, similar to the huge Gold Medal Flour sign I sketched in Minneapolis a couple of summers ago, with all the metal supports visible around it. Unlike the Gold Medal sign, the Bardahl sign still promotes an active business.
I made a note to come back when the weather warms up so that I can stand on the street and get a better view.
(Generally I’m a good speller, but if I’m including text in a sketch, I somehow manage to misspell words!)