Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Tina’s Top 10 Memorable Sketches of 2018

3/27/18 Amazon Spheres

I have a few year-end traditions on this blog, and one is to review my most memorable sketches of the year. As always, these are not necessarily my “best” or “favorite” sketches; they are ones that evoke the strongest memories and remind me of what I love so much about sketching. (Click the title of the sketch to go to the original post and full-size images.)

Here are links to my most memorable sketches from past years: 2017201620152014 and 2013.

Exploring and sketching inside Amazon’s remarkable Spheres was certainly one of my most memorable experiences this year. It lived up to all the curiosity and wonderment it aroused during the years that the facility was being built.

5/3/18 Dutch Colonial

This sketch is one of my favorites in the neighborhood architecture series that I started this year. While sketching, a contractor working inside spotted me, came out and chatted me up, making it also one of the most memorable.

5/15/18 Aaron Draplin
At the risk of revealing my fangirldom, I went to meet designer Aaron Draplin (co-founder of Field Notes) when he was in town giving a workshop. In addition to getting his autograph, of course I had to sketch him.

El Capitan was the first of many wondrous sights I saw when I first entered Yosemite National Park, and I couldn’t resist making a couple of quick thumbnails. I intended to eventually get back to El Cap for a full-size sketch, but I never did. The thumbnails, however, are enough to evoke the memories of seeing that spectacular monolith.
5/22/18 Thumbnails of El Capitan

7/19/18 Bajzek workshop, Porto
I’ve mentioned his name often enough since July that you won’t be surprised to hear that Eduardo Bajzek’s workshop at the Porto symposium had a significant influence on my sketching. He changed both the way I understand values and the way I use graphite.

7/25/18 Coimbra

A few days after Eduardo’s workshop, I was relaxing in the small college town of Coimbra and got to practice what I had learned. After all the excitement of the symposium, this quiet sketch turned out to be my most memorable and evocative of my time in Portugal.

8/18/18 Mammoth at Bell Museum
During a very short trip to St. Paul, I squeezed in a visit to the brand new Bell Museum and met up with a few sketcher friends there. Chatting with hilarious Roz Stendahl as I sketched this humongous mammoth (which was made of the same fur as Chewbacca!) made the morning very memorable, indeed.

10/5/18 Zoka Coffee

Although there is usually nothing particularly memorable about sketching at Zoka Coffee, my usual neighborhood coffee shop, this was the first time I attempted this type of scene in ballpoint. Sketched on the fifth day of InkTober, it made me realize that I could love ballpoint after all, despite my doubts – and I ended the month with a whole new respect for the lowly Bic.

I walk around Green Lake at least weekly year-round and, during the good-weather months, I also sketch there frequently, so it’s easy to take for granted the sights I see so regularly. On this fall day, I felt like I was seeing its beauty with fresh eyes, and I was grateful to live so close to such a treasure.

10/11/18 Green Lake

Whenever we visit Cannon Beach, Oregon, we stay right on the beach in front of monolithic Haystack Rock. From Ecola State Park a mile or two north, that ancient boulder looks like a tiny pebble in the context of the mighty Pacific, and if I had seen myself standing next to Haystack, I would have been smaller than a grain of sand. That trip to Cannon Beach was a celebration of my 60th birthday, and sketching this scene made me feel both whole and utterly insignificant in the larger picture. Life is good.

11/13/18 Cannon Beach from Ecola State Park


  1. I love reading how/why these were your most memorable. I've enjoyed your sketches this year!

    1. Thanks so much, Joan! I always appreciate your readership and viewing of my sketches!

  2. Interesting selections: the novel, the mundane, the far away and the next door.

    On another note, the photos in the Friday, August 11, 2017
    Field Notes Field Trip post seem to be gone.

    1. Hmmm, I just checked that Field Notes post, and the images are loading for me now. Maybe it was just momentary thing.


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