Posts Tagged ‘watercolors’

May Flowers

Posted on: May 30th, 2013 by jmbroekman 6 Comments




Sketchbook drawings

Spring is trying to arrive. The flowers are optimistic, but until today it has been feeling a lot like late winter. Evidently the sketchbook watercolor class found it’s way under my skin. I am still compelled by my new found skills with pen and watercolor. These are drawings I never would’ve imagined possible from my hand. So there you have it, never say never.

More Italian Doors

Posted on: April 11th, 2013 by jmbroekman 8 Comments

Above: doors in Umbria – Perugia, San Casciano dei Bagni (OK, maybe that is crossing a line into Tuscany), and Trevi. Below: doors in Puglia – the heel of Italy’s boot; Lecce and Gallipoli.
These are the last of my sketches done for the watercolor sketchbook class, which is officially over as of this week. Glad I did it, but looking forward to getting back to other work in the studio.


Spring … will arrive … sometime

Posted on: March 19th, 2013 by jmbroekman 8 Comments

And I am dreaming of springtime in Italy

At left: a watercolor and ink drawing of a doorway in the Trastevere neighborhood in Rome.

A few weeks ago, Judy invited illustrator/sketchbook artist Jamie Hogan to visit our watercolor sketchbook class. Though I’ve known Jamie for quite a while, I’ve never had an opportunity to sit down and talk art and sketching with her. It was totally inspiring to see her work and have that discussion. This past week, Judy invited another sketchbook artist to come and share her work with us. Rita Swidrowski brought a whole mess of sketchbooks as well as published books about keeping sketchbooks and/or travel journals etc. Obviously, travel type sketchbooks have always been an attraction for me. Seeing her work (she loves to visit France), as well as some of the other books she brought was also completely inspiring.

One of the important take-aways, for me, was the courage to attack paper with a pen in hand. I have always steered myself clear of using pen and ink, favoring the more timid and erasable approach of a pencil. But we had a long discussion about what kinds of pens she used, and I found myself questioning my fear. So, I went out and bought a few pens with which to attack this week’s assignment. What fun. Who knew drawing with a pen could be so liberating?

Watercolor Sketchbooks

Posted on: March 9th, 2013 by jmbroekman 5 Comments

Watercolor Sketchbook Class at MECA

I am taking a class at the Maine College of Art this term, with extraordinary artist/teacher/coach Judy LaBrasca. Watercolors have never been my forte and I have always admired artists who make it look so easy. Needless to say the class has been challenging, invigorating, and in general a humbling eye-opener. Below are examples of some of my more successful attempts at light airy watercolor sketches – something that is in many ways completely at odds with the way I “normally” work. In order to get there, I had to refer back to Italy – in particular the colors of Foligno (this was an assignment about memory involving color) – the first two below, and Colfiorito – a place that begs to be sketched in watercolor, and are the bottom row below and at left.