As We Transition to a New Year

I began this journey after my parents died. A way to heal the wounds maybe, a way to process my grief and loss, or a way to say goodbye. It was not planned, it just happened. When I was a child my mother always managed to get me watercolors and that is what I went back to, and every time I picked up my watercolors, I smiled and remembered her kindness and how special she was. That brings me peace and happiness and I remember that the people who leave us actually never leave, they are always there, watching, supporting and loving. That brought me to the end of 2016 and the beginning of 2017.

Last year was an interesting one. I continued my adventure with art and discovered Urban Sketchers. I got hooked! I decided to share with all of you these adventures as well as my growing pains thru this blog and even blogging became another adventure. I have continued to fall in love with sketching the world around me as well as drawing and painting every time I can. I became a very active member of Urban Sketchers Tacoma volunteering as much as possible, organizing the blogging commitments, blogging and helping with the art shows which in fact we have two coming up in a week. I have fallen in love with art and every time I draw I feel my heartbeat raising fast as I have just found a first love. I do also find a space of peace and stillness that is very difficult to describe, I find happiness.

As I start the New Year I hope to continue drawing, painting and Urban Sketching. I plan to continue being an active member of Urban Sketchers Tacoma and we are already planning our participation in the next West Coast Sketch Crawl in Vancouver BC in August. This new year I will continue to paint and learn more about myself while drawing and sketching as I continue to share my world with all of you.

These are some of my sketches that brought the year 2016 to an end!



Tacoma Community College in Tacoma, WA



Thai Rest. Golden Teals in Tacoma WA



Barns and Nobles Newsstand in Lakewood, WA



One of a couple of pieces I did while at home (not an urban sketch). This is a view of Vancouver Downtown In BC during our last trip this past summer.



Painted from a picture (not an urban sketch), this is a view of the ocean and fisherman’s in Bali painted with watercolors from a picture taken by a coworker who was there last year. As I know she loves Bali I wanted to exchange paintings with her and decided to make this one for her.

Until next time and Happy Sketching,








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A plane in disguise!

A couple of weeks ago USk Tacoma met at this wonderful furniture in Sumner, WA. I remember that I visited The Old Cannery Furniture Warehouse probably 17 years ago and I loved it the first time I laid eyes in it but never returned until now. Inside it was very festive as it is Christmas time and Santa was on his way there to greet a long line a little ones with their parents in order to take their Santa pictures. I loved the magnificent train traveling al around the ceiling. The furniture its spectacular.

I took my time browsing the different departments before settling in to start drawing. I walked and walked trying to find something out of so many subjects I could draw but nothing would call my name until that moment that I looked up and guess what? There it was, a plane disguising in plain sight! It was very challenging to draw  with all its lines and shapes. Drawing planes takes a lot of practices and this is the very first one I have ever drew. Totally out of my league I can say but I always welcome a good challenge. 🙂  This is the result.


Until next time and Happy Sketching,


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A 20 Minute Sketch! 

It’s been one week since I sketched last. Way too long.  One thing I have noticed since I began sketching is that the more you do it,  the more you Need to do it. It’s like chocolate.  Have you ever needed a piece of chocolate really bad? That is the feeling I get when I need some sketching time. It’s like a craving that won’t pass until it’s satisfied.  Today was one of those days.  Actually,  the last few days have felt like this.  Sketching grounds me,  relaxes me,  helps me focus and is a form of mindfulness to me. Even if I only do it for 20 minutes it still helps.  It’s like a power nap!  At the end I feel energized and ready to go back to work. This is the outcome from my 20 Minute Sketch! 

After grabbing a bite at my favorite Mexican restaurant I parked across the street and from the car I sketched the Science Building at the Tacoma Community College in University Place, Washington.  I love the architecture in this building and this community college has a few new buildings like this.  

Until next time and Happy Sketching! 


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Experimenting with Fountain Pens

One thing I love about this artistic endeavor is that I get to experiment with different mediums or combination of mediums in a regular bases. Last week I received two items that I was waiting for. My Lamy fine point fountain pen and a Platinum Carbon Pen with the ink and the converters as well. Even though I have wanted a Lamy pen for a long time I stop from buying one until last week as a birthdate present to me. A personal note, I always get something special to myself during my birthdate. I did not know what the best ink was for this item. I was closed to buy the Noodlers brand but a colleague sketcher recommended the Platinum Carbon Ink and the Platinum Carbon pen as well since it is extra fine and it is a great complement to the Lamy. She stated that she prefers the Platinum Carbon ink because is dries very fast and it is easier to apply watercolor on top very quickly. Thank you Kate! I am a fast sketcher and my time for sketching is quite limited during the week so I need to make sure that my ink dries fast so I can paint and have a finish product in 30minutes. I followed her recommendations and voila, this is the result.



The Chapel at University of Puget Sound in Tacoma WA



A view from my studio window during the early morning hours












Until next one and Happy Sketching!


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A Very Wet Day!

Yes Fall is here. I don’t only recognize it because of the beautiful colors but it is also non stop pouring out there. Last week our Urban Sketchers Tacoma Chapter had its monthly weekend outing and we went to the Pacific Lutheran University in Parkland. It was seriously raining that day and I walked three blocks under this heavy rain but nothing was going deter me from sketching with my favorite group. We met at the Mortvedt Library were I was impressed by the Saint’s John Bible exhibit located in the lobby. Due to the copious rain I decided to sketch inside. I chose a quiet spot on the second floor admiring the color of the trees as well as the bell tower. There is one thing I loved about sketching in the library and that was the silence, the stillness, that nothing could take my focus and concentration away. It was great.


This was my creation for the day. Love the colors of Autumn!

Happy Sketching,


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A Hot Day in the Hot Shop!

A week ago I was able to take the day off. The first thing in my mind considering how hectic the last two weeks have been was sketching. I invited my fellow sketcher Frances for this Ad Hoc trip and she was so kind to invite me to the Tacoma Glass Museum. It was a gorgeous day and it has been so long since I last went to the Hot Shop to admire great artist making spectacular pieces of glass art. Inside the cone there were many artists working at the same time, moving quickly and never posing off course! You can imagine my challenge trying to draw them as they work on glass! This opportunity helped me practice more about sketching people which is one of my biggest challenges. It helped me  loosen up a bit, stop thinking about how terribly I may be doing and focusing more in the process and the experience and just simply have fun. It is all about fun right? As follows this is what I was able to draw.


Until next time and Happy Sketching!



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Fallen in Love in my new GREEN

I live in the Pacific Northwest and when sketching, what do you see the most unless you live in the city? Come on guess! nope not that… nope that neither,  yes you got it!  Pine trees, all kinds and all varieties you might imagine and finding the perfect green in watercolors is challenging! I own and use the following green watercolors; Sap Green from QOR Watercolors, Sap Green from Windsor & Newton Professional Watercolors, Windsor Green (Blue Shade) from Windsor & Newton Professional Watercolors, Hooker’s Green from Windsor & Newton Professional Watercolors and my newest addition Jadeite Genuine from Daniel Smith Extra Fine Watercolors. All of my greens from Windsor & Newton Professional Watercolors are very nice but so far they don’t match the intense green I was looking for. A green that can provide the illusion of the beautiful green forests of the Pacific Northwest. In my search I stumbled upon QOR colors and I will definitely talk about them in more detail in a future post. I like them a lot and the green shade of Sap Green I found that it does a very good job with the evergreens, not perfect, or at least not the intensity I was looking for but I could live with that. Never the less my search continued.

I am very lucky that Daniel Smith Art supplies store is not horribly far away from home, roughly 50 miles away. One day due to work commitments I was 10 minutes away from this place and I could not resist stopping there on my way home. WOW I found paradise! “The missing link,” “El Dorado.” There I resumed my search for the perfect green.  Stumbled upon Jadeite Genuine, a beautiful shade of green that is so pure and intense that brings tears to my eyes, well probably not that much but very close. This particular color is part of a collection called the Prima Tek colors. One thing I learned about Daniel Smith Watercolors is that they are built from the ground up meaning they use pigments from the earth to make the Prima Tek watercolor! Daniel Smith has a mineralogist that travels the world finding the right minerals for these exquisite colors. In particular Jadeite Genuine is made of two minerals, Jade and Nephrite. This color is a series 4 and the price is higher that the other ones but it is totally worth it! The price is $13.77 for a 5ml tube (small) but is currently on sale for $10.33. If you live far from the Seattle or Bellevue area you can always buy Daniel Smith online, this is the web address;

As follows these are a couple of sketches I have done using this beautiful Jadeite Genuine Watercolor.



I drew this sketch of my neighborhood a week ago as I was waiting for a storm that never showed up! You can see the contrast between the pine trees and the Sap green of the bushes and grass.



This is another sketch I did yesterday while waiting for some new tires at Les Schwab. All the pine trees are painted with Daniel Smith’s Jadeite Genuine and the bushes are done with Sap Green from QOR watercolors.

Well this is my Urban Sketching journey for the last couple of weeks, experimenting and learning more about color. Now that the Fall has arrived there will be a lot more opportunities to experience new colors, shades and vibrant tones.

Until next time and Happy Sketching,







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