Cafeteria Characters

Coffee shops and libraries are great places to see a variety of people, who will pause for a few moments so that you can quickly sketch them. As are cafeterias and restaurants. While waiting for Ashley to finish work in the mornings I’ve been sitting in the hospital cafeteria, sipping on a coffee and sketching.

Almost everyone goes to the utensil/condiment counter, so it’s a great spot to catch them stationary for a few moments:

My favorite of the day was the elderly gentleman who sat at the table in front of me to eat. Quite the hair-do. Ashley said I can’t grow mine like that…. 🙁

Though, the lady in the serape poncho was pretty fun, too.

And when no one’s there, you can draw the condiments themselves! At least you know they won’t be moving on you.

Sketching, for the fun of it

Confession time, I’m not very good at just making art for the fun of it. I used to sketch and doodle a lot, but after college got out of the habit. Over the last year I’ve started again, in fits and starts. While I haven’t really made any 2017 resolutions, I am making it a point to make more art. Nothing serious, just art for me, for the fun of it.

Actually, I started in 2016. I re-organized my art supplies so they’re more accessible and tucked some sketchbooks and pens/pencils in a bag so they’re easy to grab.

Here are some doodles:

Sitting in the hospital lobby, waiting for Ashley to get off of work.


At a coffee shop, enjoying a French Press.


Someone at the register, ordering their coffee.

Sketching at Hetch Hetchy

Out for a 2-night backpacking trip up past Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in Yosemite National Park. After a full week of exploring the park we took a lazy day at camp. While there I sketched Ashley as she enjoyed the view out over the valley, and a few of the awesome, gnarly branches of the shrubs surrounding the rock she was seated on.

2016-04-23 10.16.51

Sketching Half Dome from the North

Overnighting on the John Muir Trail in Yosemite National Park, we hiked up from our campsite in Little Yosemite Valley to the Half Dome trail. The cables haven’t been installed on HD itself, so the trail isn’t officially open, but we only made it about 3/4 of the way until running into snow anyway. Made for a great location to sit and enjoy the view down into Yosemite Valley and up at Half Dome. Pulled out the graphite and sketchbook to record the iconic granite monolith from the north side .

Sketching Half Dome

Got hot while hiking, so zipped off the bottom half of my pant legs, but then cooled down when stopped so pulled the fleece out of my bag.

Sketching Half Dome


Half Dome


Graphite Sketch of Half Dome


Sketching Half Dome

Suspension bridge in Yosemite

First night in Yosemite National Park we hiked up a trail near our campground and went across a suspension bridge along the way. On the way back we stopped and enjoyed the view while I sketched it.

Suspension Bridge in Yosemite

Graphite Sketch of Suspension bridge in Yosemite

My favorite part might be the inclusion of the sketchbook at the bottom of the sketch. I thought about adding another one inside it, but thought that might be a bit much.

Guest Artists – the Nieces

In between working on a couple of paintings I got the nieces to join in on the fun. Here you can see their work from my request to “draw a stick figure”.

Bailee – 10

Ink Stick Figure holding up a sign that says "Kick Me"
I love the bow in her hair!

She saw me working, drawing stick figures with signs and she decided to do the same. You’ve gotta love her sense of humor!

Hannah – 7

Pencil stick figure with a full head of long hair
Getting the hair just right was important!

You could see the wheels turning when I asked her to draw a stick figure, she just wasn’t sure why. But when I convinced her to she made sure to get the hair just right.

Bri- 6

Ink stick figures (and more) by my 6 year old niece
The first two didn’t count

It took a couple of tries to get her to actually draw a stick figure, I got … some other things first. And then I guess we had to go through the Goldilocks process: one too big, one too small, and the third one was just right!