Saturday, February 15, 2020

Fourth & Cherry in Thumbnails

2/14/20 View of 4th & Cherry

Although USk Seattle had met at Columbia Center only last fall, we all agreed then that Seattle’s tallest building offers enough easy views that it wouldn’t be too soon to visit again in the winter. In addition to spacious windows with seating and tables on the three lobby floors, the central stairway challenged several sketchers. Finally, the Starbucks on the 40th floor (the highest Starbucks in the city and, at least at one time, in the country) offers spectacular views for the price of a coffee (a great alternative to paying $22 to ride up to the 73rd floor where, admittedly, the view is even more spectacular).

Last time I was there, I did a full-size sketch of the Smith Tower, so yesterday I decided instead to do a series of thumbnail-size sketches from various points in the building. From a third-floor corner facing Fourth Avenue and Cherry Street, I took on the Smith Tower again, an abstract view of another building and the skyway (jokingly called Seattle’s “bridge of sighs”) between the King County Courthouse and correctional facility.

2/14/20 A slice of sky from the 40th floor

Next I rode the elevator up to floor 40 to check out the Sky View Starbucks (at left). The last time I spent any time there, I enjoyed a much wider view of Elliott Bay. With all the new buildings that have been completed in the past several years, the slices of sky and water are getting slimmer and slimmer. (I was working on this sketch when I was rudely reminded that I’m currently using a Stillman & Birn Epsilon instead of the heavier Zeta. As soon as I spread water on the page to “paint” the clouds, the paper rippled badly and never recovered.)

Not yet ready to give up my prime corner table, I swiveled 90 degrees and looked down. My next page of thumbnails (below) includes the Gothic tower of Trinity Parish Church and Interstate 5. If you look closely at the last sketch, you’ll see some tiny blue dots. That’s a small village of tents where, very sadly, an increasing number of Seattle citizens reside (as well as in many other parts of the city).

2/14/20 Trinity Parish Church and Interstate 5

I’ll leave you with one last thumbnail: I arrived downtown quite a bit early for the sketch outing, so I made a quick stop on First Avenue facing Elliott Bay and the Seattle Great Wheel. I still can’t get over the view that is no longer blocked by the viaduct.

2/14/20 Seattle Great Wheel and Elliott Bay

1 comment:

  1. You really had quite a day of sketching! I like the thumbnails and that sketch from the 40th floor. Even with the buckling paper you showed the depth of the scene very well!


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