Thursday, June 22, 2017

Grant's Tomb - Part II

Once it started raining on Saturday, we weren't going anywhere. Luckily the portico was covering us unless you ventured too close to the edges. Here is a link to what we were facing.

I was looking down the portico toward the other sketchers when I painted this.

And then looking straight ahead for this one.

We usually go to a bar or restaurant to share our sketches around 3:00 pm. Wouldn't you know it...just around quarter to 3 the rain stopped. It was perfect timing for our walk to the restaurant.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Grant's Tomb Part I

On Saturday the NYC Urban Sketchers met at Grant's Tomb in the city. The weather forecast said a chance of showers but from the way the reports have been wrong lately I took my rain jacket just to be safe. I had just finished this piece when it started to spritz. I figured I would pack up my stuff and head for the sheltered portico on the front of the building. I made it just in time. Two of the other sketchers just put up their umbrellas to finish.

My friend, Mark Leibowitz took this photo of me sketching there which he posted on our NYC Urban Sketching Facebook page with these words.

"When we first got to Grant’s Tomb before the rain started I was sitting next to Joan sketching the building from the same view. The building must have had at least two dozen flags hanging from every possible surface. 
I made the decision to paint the building without the flags. I just left them out completely. Joan included every single one of them. As she wrote in her post on the 17th, “I think I did my quota of flags for a while.” 
Later when we scrambled up the stairs to get out of the rain I took this shot to honor Joan, - the sketching queen of American Flags."

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Distant Lighthouse

The other day I had to drop paintings off for a show at the Fire Island Lighthouse. Since I was there I figured I'd paint. It was rainy and super windy, so I sat in the car to do this piece.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Patchogue Shores Beach

Last week our sketch group went to a private beach in Patchogue Shores to sketch. You had to be a member with a key to get in the gate. Luckily we had connections.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Beach Sketches

We had a few sunny days before the rain and humidity came, so I went to the beach. There are always models to sketch.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

New York Botanical Gardens - Part III

For my last painting I returned to the area in front of the conservancy. There were a lot of artists painting there at that time because there were quite a few areas of shade. I painted the path in front of me and included two of the "invited" artists...Shari Blaukopf to the right and Elissa Gore to the left.

Here are a few photos of the other artists at work.

Marc Taro Holmes

Shari Blaukopf

The day of painting was followed by a reception for the invited artists. We knew a few of them and were invited in to view their work which was on display.

Friday, June 16, 2017

New York Botanical Gardens Part II

Like I said, it was hot on Sunday at the Botanical Gardens, so most of what I did depended on where the shade was at a given time. After finishing the first painting, I wandered around to see some of the invited painters at work. Of course I appreciate all the artwork, but I gravitate toward the watercolor artists. Marc Taro Holmes was painting in the back of the conservancy near the water lily pond. I went over to see him and introduced myself. I will be taking a workshop with him at the Urban Sketching Symposium in Chicago in July. His work is just amazing. I chatted with him and watched his process for a while until his shade started shrinking. Then I was off to see Shari Blaukopf who was in front of the conservancy. I met her last year when she was in NY. All of the artists were so gracious with their time and didn't seem to mind answering questions and having lots of people stop and watch.

I walked a little bit and found a shady spot not too far away. Thank goodness there are a lot of big trees around. Another of the "uninvited" artists was painting there, and while I was painting another artist sat down to paint in that same area. Here is my second painting of the day.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

New York Botanical Gardens Part I

Sunday at the NY Botanical Gardens they were having a Plein Air Invitational Paint-Out. Many well-known plein air artists from the USA and Canada were scheduled to participate. In addition the regular folk were invited to come and watch and sketch on their own. The NYC Urban Sketchers set their location to the gardens for Saturday, but I would have gone regardless. I had gone last year and spent a lot of time watching the other artists who I have followed online.

Sunday the temperatures were in the 90s, so it sort of slowed me down a bit. I tended to stay where there was shade and not walk far. My first painting was done by the gardens in front of the Conservancy. It is a walled garden with lovely flowers...and lots of people. I put in one figure when there should have been about 10 at any given time. Luckily I had a perfectly shady spot to work truth the shade determined the view I would be sketching.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Cupsogue Beach

On Sunday I went to Cupsogue Beach at the end of Dune Road in Westhampton. I haven't been there in about a year and it changed quite a bit. The Beach Hut Raw Bar and Grill is now on the level of the parking lot. You still have to walk up the boardwalk to get over the dunes and to the beach. I wonder if the renovations were due to the winter storms. It is a nice, quiet beach. I'll have to make sure to go back again.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


Yes, I know people paint pictures of what they eat...but usually not while the food is alive. I'm the exception.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Jade Palace

My friend, Suzala and I planned to go out sketching on Friday. We didn't have a lot of time and needed something near her house where parking was easy. She's the friend with the broken foot so she needed to be pretty much just able to get out of the car and sit in her chair. She suggested this throwback to a 50s style Chinese restaurant in Farmingdale. We both loved the roof. Sadly it looks like the place has closed. Another one bites the dust.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Mastic Water View

On the way to the beach, I stopped along the water in Mastic Beach to sketch.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Setauket View

I was up along the water in Setauket the other day. I sat in a parking lot by the dock and painted the view back to the street.

Friday, June 9, 2017


My sketch group met at Flo's in Blue Point on Wednesday night. It is a fun place to sketch...very colorful and there are always people around. 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Cory Beach

Even though the temperatures haven't been very warm, I took a drive down to Corey Beach in Blue Point the other day. It was too windy to sit outside to sketch so I did this from the car.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Beach Scenes

A friend of mine heads the Tri-Hamlet Sketch Group and on Saturday she scheduled a sketch meeting at Smith Point Beach, the beach I usually go to. Although I am not a member of her group I have joined the group a few times. We met near the rangers station. It was very windy and my water container blew over a few times, but I was able to do one watercolor sketch outside.

Meanwhile, Jen and another woman were sketching the views from inside the rangers station. For this  second sketch I joined them on the second floor of the ranger station. It was nice to have a bird's eye view of the beach.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Beach Iris

You wouldn't often associate a beach with irises, but I do. Smith Point Park, one of the beaches near me, has the TWA Flight 800 Memorial overlooking the water. The memorial and gardens are in memory of the lives lost when Flight 800 exploded off the Long Island coast. It was the area where much of the debris from the plane washed up. The memorial is really lovely and I often get there at the right time to paint the irises. The only ones in bloom the other day were white ones which are so hard to paint. I gave it a try.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Arts on Terry

I'm going to skip over a few sketches (I promise I'll go back to them.) because of what I took part in yesterday. In the town of Patchogue, they held the second annual "Arts on Terry" which this year was part of the "Summer of Love 2017" which will continue with events all summer. OK, I did the summer of love 60s thing back in the day and was very reluctant to go back and do it again, but two of my art groups were I joined in. Luckily the art didn't need to reflect the theme.

Terry Street was closed to traffic and set up with booths and racks to display art. Most of the local art groups signed up and participated. I belong to the South Bay Art Association and we had a booth. Each participating artist for that group was allowed to bring 2 pieces of work to display. I think we had about 46 pieces in total. Here is our booth. In addition to the framed artwork we brought notecards, matted pieces of art, and I brought my alcohol ink tiles and some books of my art too.

We were asked if some of the members would be willing to demonstrate their painting or sketching while the event was going on. A few of our members did. I am at my easel in the photo below on the right sketching the scene along the street. The other two ladies were working on paintings that were being done from photos.

Here is the sketch that I did of the festival.

My other group, the Patchogue Sketch Club, was about two booths away, so I tried to share my time with them too. Here are a couple of photos from that group. We decided to dress in 60s garb if possible. I did paint a t-shirt just for the occasion.

Here are my sketching friends Cindy, LuAnn and Rosanne.

In the spirit of the 60s Christina painted flowers on her face and I had my peace sign t-shirt.

Our group also provided clipboards, paper, pencils and markers to anyone who came along and wanted to sketch. Quite a few of the kids did.

Right near our booth, an artist friend, Amanda Reilly was painting a large canvas. She runs the Sideshow Sketch Night events that I go to every once in a while. Here she is on her ladder painting.


And here she is with her painting nearly completed. The umbrella was to keep her work dry because it started to rain.

I sketched Amanda when she had just started...little did I know that there would be a beast in the painting too...but knowing Amanda that didn't surprise me.

It was such a fun event, with art being created everywhere. There were models posing for sketchers, music, poetry, glass blowing, pottery wheels, etc. The only thing that interfered with the day was the weather. Setup started around 9 for the artists, the event opened at 12, and it started raining around 3. We ignored it for a while and just made sure the artwork was safe in the booths. The rain got heavier around 3:45 and they called it a day. The event should have gone on until 6. 

Here are a few of our merry sketchers who lasted until the end in the rain. It was great that at the end of the day we didn't have to do anything except take our paintings, sketches, and materials. The Patchogue Arts Council took care of the racks and booths.

We were a bit soggy by then, but everyone had a great time and would do it again.

Sunday, June 4, 2017


On Wednesday night our sketch group met on Main Street in Patchogue. There are a number of restaurants that are open to the street like Gallo. I liked that I could see some of the customers easily.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Peconic Herb Farm

On Tuesday my plein air group had our first outing of the season at the Peconic Herb Farm. I could paint there for hours. They have such wonderful displays. I was attracted to this bike surrounded by flowers but I think it is too busy with all the foliage and the bike doesn't stand out enough. I think I needed to use more artistic license in this one.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Bellport House

Like I said, last weekend was a busy art weekend for me. Friday the South Bay Art Association had our 60th Annual Members Show reception in Bellport.  It was very nice and we had a good turnout.

Here is a photo of me with one of my paintings.

Below is a photo of all the members of the organization that were at the reception.

This photo is of all the members who participated in the show.

On Sunday I had to sit the show for a while and then at 5 we picked up our paintings. I had about 1 1/2 hrs to do I did a painting of the house next to the community center where the show had been held. I'm glad they had a patriotic flag hanging for Memorial Day.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Fire Island Lighthouse Paintout

I belong to Wet Paint Studio Group and for the last few years we have been having a 2 day paintout at the Fire Island Lighthouse. For some reason this year it was scheduled for the Friday and Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend, a very busy time. I hoped to go on Friday but the weather wasn't great and I didn't want to get stuck far from my car if it started raining. My plan was to go on Saturday but get there before all the people who were celebrating the holiday. It can get extremely crowded there on the weekend.

I left home about 6:15 am, picked up a bagel and coffee for breakfast, and then realized I had left my lunch at home. (Presently there is no food available at this beach due to remodeling). I turned around, went home and was at Robert Moses State Park Field 5 at 6:45. I had my breakfast, used the porta-potty (the ladies room at the concession is also closed), grabbed all my materials and headed out to paint. I've painted there so many times that I really wanted a different view. I walked all the way past the lighthouse and down to the dock. I was able to stand about halfway out so I could get a view of the water as well as the lighthouse. 

For my second piece I moved closer to the lighthouse along the walkway in front of the lighthouse.

By this time I was ready for a lunch break...and so were most of the other artists who were in various places painting too. The staff at the lighthouse had a room set aside for us with coffee, treats and comfy chairs for us to relax for a while. It felt so good to sit down since I had been standing for about  5 hours already.

For those who have never done a paint out, in addition to your painting supplies you have to be ready to hang your artwork. So in my cart that I brought along with me I had mats and frames as well as anything I  thought I might need to get the paintings ready to hang. I brought along 3 frames so I figured I might as well do one more for the last frame. This is the boat house and after I painted it a docent came along and opened it to the public.

Our group now has about 23 paintings hanging for sale in the lens house next to the lighthouse. They will be there for the next 2 weeks.

Here is my setup for the first painting. I had an umbrella up until I finished painting the sky. The sun was behind me and I didn't want the sky to dry before I got all the blue done.

Here is part of the painting against the view.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017


Last week I went out to paint irises at Gillette Park in Sayville. Like all the other flowers at this time of year they are relatively short lived. Best to get them while they are here.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Starbucks View

Last Wednesday they were forecasting showers so our sketch group met at Starbucks in Patchogue...of course the weather was fine. lol We sat inside and since we usually sketch there in the winter and it is dark outside, I was drawn to the view out the window of this man and his son.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Poppy Parade & Remembering Our Heroes

This is being shared in memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for all of us. How appropriate that I had a poppy painting to share.  Happy Memorial Day!

This was done in my friend, Susan's garden recently.

Sunday, May 28, 2017


I love when the cherries are in season. They are so delicious and fun to sketch...if I can stop eating them. lol

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Washington Square Park Continued

There was so much activity going on in Washington Square Park. Right in front of me there was a man doing tarot card reading (and he had quite a few customers).  NYU was having their graduation so all day long there were grads in caps and gowns posing in the park. Of course there were food carts and assorted people milling around. I only captured a few of them.

While I was doing my sketch this cute dog was sitting next to me. His owner said he was getting old and didn't move around much, so he would be a great subject. He only seemed to perk up when another dog came over to visit. His name is Marco Polo.

On the way home we had seats on the subway for part of the trip, so I had a few models across from me.