Friday, June 27, 2014

Wet-on-Wet at the Arboretum

6/27/14 Kuretake brush pen, watercolor, Canson XL 140 lb. paper
It was a good day for the wet-on-wet watercolor technique – whether I wanted it or not.

After a week of daily incorrect rain forecasts, it was finally correct on this morning that the Friday sketchers were planning to meet at the Washington Park Arboretum. We talked about a possible contingency location, but it was barely drizzling when we gathered there, so we decided to brave it.

When I was at the arboretum last week, I had spotted a large, elegantly asymmetrical cherry tree as we hiked along Azalea Way, so I made a mental note to sketch it later. Luckily, my sketch of it and I both stayed mostly dry.

6/27/14 Platinum Carbon ink, watercolor, Zig marker
By the time I had finished, the drizzle was turning into a sprinkle that might have become an outright shower at any moment (You know how Eskimos purportedly have a thousand different words for snow? Seattleites have at least a hundred words for rain), so I thought I’d be smart and set up my stool under some wide trees. As I sketched the enormous leaves of the Darmera Peltata (umbrella plant), a young woman suddenly appeared with a camera, and I was delighted to have something to establish the scale of the leaves. Just then, a gust of wind shook all the trees I was sheltering under, drenching me and my sketch. I made the best of the mandatory wet-on-wet technique to finish it.


  1. LOL Isn't sketching and painting in the rain fun? You did really well at keeping dry while you did these great sketches. Your cherry tree looks so lovely, and I love the sense of size that the woman with the camera gave to the second sketch!!!

  2. Sounds like it was a great day in spite of the rain. When I looked at the second sketch my immediate thought was 'zucchini plant' and then I saw the woman with the camera :-)

    Cheers --- Larry


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