Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Columbia City Street Corner


6/17/23 Columbia City

South Seattle’s Columbia City neighborhood has traditional clocks and globe lamps on the sidewalks. The very first time I sketched in Columbia City was 11 years ago with USk Seattle. I knew that I had sketched a clock and lamp post that time too, but I couldn’t remember which intersection it was. I just looked back at my blog, and wouldn’t you know – it’s the same corner! I guess the things that appeal to me haven’t changed. Just for fun, I’m including that sketch below.

Technical note: When I was finishing the sketch, I used a bit too much water spritzing the background trees, so I took out a paper towel to dab the excess water. As an experiment, I started rubbing instead of dabbing, which smudged the color into a blurry, drab, grayish-brown that matched the gloomy, overcast day. It’s not a pretty color, but it’s one reason I love the secondary triad so much: Even grayish-brown can have interesting green and purple tones. I liked the overall tonal rather than textural quality, so I did the same thing elsewhere in the background where I wanted to blur the marks while also darkening the values.

10/21/12 Eleven years later, I'm still drawn to the same street corner (though I think my eye for composition has improved a bit).


  1. I find I often do the same thing and return to the exact spot or view that I had already sketched. There must be something calling us to that spot. Nicely done. Good thinking for blending the color. It is a useful color too!

    1. Sometimes I choose the same view because it's the only one that's appealing. But other times, even if I have several choices, I still end up at the same one... that must be the type that calls to us.


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