Sketching on location: coffee cups!

OK…so I was actually (who me?) spontaneous this summer and signed up for a class with Jane LaFazio, Sketchbooks and Watercolor on Location.  The idea is/was that you go OUT to sketch and sketch from the real thing, not a photo.  I am SO GLAD I did…I’m having a ball, so much so that (as I’ve mentioned before) I signed up for a second class.  This post is about the first class, and one of the early lessons.

So I dropped the son off to run at the high school (this was late summer), and treated myself to tea and sweet at a nearby spot.

Told the child I wanted /needed about an hour.  After dithering about what treat to get, I finally sat down at this table with LUSCIOUS basil.

I briefly considered including the basil in the sketch. I then realized I'd be there 'til midnight if I tried, and decided (who me?) to go simple. OK, to go not as complicated.

Then I finally began to sketch.

A close-up of the cup and tea bag. Don't you just LOVE the cup sleeve, from the Carrabassett Coffee company?

Here is the sketch, done first in pencil, then inked in with a Pitt pen.  Of course, 20 minutes after I arrived I get a call:  “Mom, it’s too hot to run!”  Me:  “remember I said I needed about an hour?”  Then, “you’ll have to wait for me for another half hour…find a shady spot to sit.”  Sigh.

Inked in....cup is too short and not tapered enough, but still OK.

SO…. I packed up my cup and supplies and the rest of the chocolate cake (slurp), and retrieved the child and headed home.  It actually was pretty warm.  Then I set things up at home.  The shadows/light were different, but close enough….

Adding color at home, on the dining table, lacking the usual clutter around my spot.

And the final sketch:

Not too bad for a beginner....the curve of the cup isn't quite off, and the tea bag looks like it is levitating a bit, but not too bad....

Considering I’m just starting with watercolor, I’m pretty happy.  I have discovered that having REAL watercolor paper makes a world of difference, and having little water in the brush makes it much easier to stay within the shapes and not bleed and make yucky stuff! FUN!

5 Responses to “Sketching on location: coffee cups!”

  1. Dorothy Karman Says:

    Not a bad sketch for a beginner. Not really a beginner? That cake also looked tasty! Dorothy.

  2. Julia Kelly Says:

    I think you did a fantastic job- keep it up you will be amazed looking back through your sketch book- how you improve- real is so much better than photos!

  3. Donna Keller Says:

    I think it turned out great Sarah! I love it! I just tried my hand at watercolor yesterday for the first time. I love what I did too but it wasn’t a drawing. If I have time, I’ll post it on my blog but I’m headed to Houston in the next hour or two, and I have some other things to do. Have a wonderful weekend.

  4. Sally Says:

    Your work doesn’t look like a beginner’s to me. Looking forward to seeing your next work.

  5. Marie Joerger Says:

    Hi Sarah,
    This is great! How on earth do you find the time? I took a wonderful class with Sarah this past Saturday. Thank you so much for all the wonderful ideas! If any of you have a chance to take a class with Sarah I would highly recommend it – she is a very motivated and exciting teacher – the room was full of lots of creative energy and ideas! I spent time today going through my new autographed copy of Sarah’s book “Thread Work Unraveled” and can’t wait to try many of the concepts. Marie