November 30, 2011. Here are some of the sketchbooks I've used the past couple of years. I've enjoyed filling up several 11 x 8.5 inch Pentalic Nature Sketch pads. (Pentalic website) I found these up in Post Falls, Idaho. They are 130 lb cold press pages, and off-white. At the same art supply store I found the Strathmore Visual Journal 140 lb. cold press sketchbook (300 g/qm), which I loved. I like the heavy, snow-white pages with very little tooth. (Strathmore's blog) Of course, I love using the Moleskine brand watercolor sketchbooks (Moleskine), and I'm excited to begin using a new A4 size watercolor sketchbook that my wife just brought back from the States. A couple weekends ago, my son and I went up to Freiburg for the day, where we found a wonderful art supply store and came home with a 30 x 40 cm Hahnemuehle 300 g/qm (140 lb) hot pressed sketch block, (Hahnemuehle), and a cold-press block of the same size, made by Art Select. (site) Although I like them both, I have to say I'm strongly attracted to the hot press block, even though I don't really know what I'm doing with it yet. Over the summer, I was excited to receive a gift of several sketchbooks to sample from Stillman & Birn. Unfortunately, my suitcases were so heavily packed, I wasn't able to bring all of them home to Germany with me, so I am looking forward to getting started with them this coming summer in California.
November 29, 2011. I don't know, I thought it was an interesting idea to throw some random sketches around my desk and take a photo of it. We spent the evening talking to an admissions counselor at a photography school with my daughter. Exciting thinking about all of the changes in our lives ahead.
November 25, 2011. I went out yesterday and sketched this little scene in Wollbach. The video is a little tour of the village of Wollbach through sketches this past fall. As you can see, it's a beautiful little dorf, even though the colors of fall are slowly falling away.
November 23, 2011. I love walking up to the top of the hill overlooking Freiburg. The city is grand whichever direction you look. Most of this city was destroyed by bombs during WW2. During the rebuilding years after the war, old photographs were used to reconstruct it.
November 18, 2011. Freiburg is definitely one of my favorite places here in Germany. Cobbled streets, medieval structures, university students, coffee shops, international foods, the cathedral, open market, train access... and all in the midst of the Black Forest.
November 16, 2011. My son's got great surfer kid hair. But when it gets too bushy bushy blonde for his parents, we sent him here- Hinz & Kunst, located at the Villa Umbach on the golf course. By the way, I didn't do this sketch on location- I'm including a photo of my workspace to show the size of this one.
November 12, 2011. I took my wife to the airport yesterday, as she'll be in the States for a couple weeks. On the way back I stopped in St-Louis, a little French town just over the river. This is the "Hotel de Europe."
November 10, 2011. I didn't venture out today- too cold. So I stayed in my classroom and sketched this out my window- trying to capture a little more fall color before it's all gone. My son's 13th today, so we have two teenagers in our house now.
November 7, 2011. A huge thanks to all who came to my art show/sale this past weekend. A big thanks to my wife for her delicious cheesecake, not to mention all her work framing and making reproductions, to Len and Mary for opening up their home- a wonderful old house built in the 1300s, perfect atmosphere for my kind of artwork, and to Danny, who gave us our own mini-concert at the end of the evening. Many of you said that you would also be interested in having a drawing that sums up the town of Kandern, so I will be planning to do a Kandern skyline at some point. In the meantime, here's a drawing of one of the most common scenes that everyone from here will be familiar with- Main Street and the Eis Cafe.
November 3, 2011. Quite a story with this sketch. While I was sketching it, the owner came out (Helmut), and we became instant friends. He introduced me to a 100 year-old artist who also painted this house, then to his wife. We sat around their table and I listened to their stories until I had to run back to the school to pack my students up for the bus. Helmut and his wife not only want to buy this little sketch, but said they wanted to come to my art show tomorrow night.
November 2, 2011. I couldn't let the fall go by without trying to capture some of the color around me. This particular tree is one we walk by every day, sometimes several times a day. Turn left at those houses and I'm home.
November 1, 2011. All Saints' Day today, so no school. I stayed home and spent the morning drawing a little scene from Long Beach. My dad and I walked around town one day back in August, and I snapped a photo of a few things that reminded me of my home town.