Sierra Sketches

Horsetail Falls (larger)
Sierra Cabin (larger)

On our recent cabin trip I had plenty of time to seek out sketching subjects. For some reason though I always have trouble finding things to sketch there.

The forest is teeming with detail; it can be overwhelming. There are not a lot of large shapes or distinct value patterns either.

Or maybe they are there and I just can’t see them? I’d like to be able to sketch more of the natural areas, but it seems I can’t see the forest for the trees!

At any rate, these were fun to do and I intend to go back soon and sketch some more.

Old Garage (larger)
On the Deck (larger)
Pyramid Creek (larger)

22 Responses to “Sierra Sketches”

  1. Anita Davies Says:

    Wonderful sketches. I haven’t visited in a while but I sooo enjoy my time here when I do.
    Gonna add you to my blogroll so I don’t lose you again.

  2. Lost In Wonder Says:

    Makes me feel like I’m on vacation in a cool cabin in the woods. So great.

  3. beegirl0211 Says:

    Looks like a fantastic vacation! I adore your travel sketches! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Rick Says:

    I like your handling of the trees. Well done – thanks for sharing.

  5. Jana Bouc Says:

    I think that the way you tackled the forest vs the trees worked just great — a big quiet shape for the background forest and a few particular trees closer up. It’s odd you say you had trouble seeing that because you clearly sorted it out just fine. I like the crop of the people in front of the cabin with just their feet and legs.

  6. Deb Says:

    These are awesome! Beautiful simplicity!

  7. Marva Says:

    Oh these are wonderful! Looks like a very relaxing getaway!

  8. Lisa Says:

    Love ’em all, my friend…but FEEL the deck sketch and wish I had been there. All of your sketches ring so true of those delightful Sierra smells. God, I miss having those scenes a weekend drive away. I know you won’t ever take for granted. Keep sketching them for us!

  9. MaryO Says:

    I so admire your love for detail while keeping everything crisp and fresh looking. These are all fabulous, just what I’d want my travel drawings to look like!

  10. petescully Says:

    All excellent. I particularly enjoyed the top one, and the bottom one for the water. Must have been a lot of fun up there!

  11. EdelmaK Says:

    I love the way you sketched the Horsetail Falls. The simple outline in the the foreground is terrific!! Great job!!

  12. TeriC Says:

    OMG, these are just gorgeous. I get such a wonderful feeling of the nature and wildness of it all! Just gorgeous!

  13. moreidlethoughts Says:

    The word “spare” comes to mind, yet the sketches suggest so much more.

  14. Genine Says:

    Martha , these are wonderful, I especially like the Horsetail falls (Love the composition) and The Creek (the water is excellent!!)

  15. Sharon Smith Says:

    Love the Sierras and am really enjoying your sketches of your Sierra trip! I know what you mean about the shear amount of detail in the forest. Do you know the artist, Chiura Obata who moved to the Bay Area from Japan in 1903. He taught for years at Cal in the Art Department and his passion was sketching and painting in Yosemite. My favorite book of his is:
    Obata’s Yosemite. I particularly like with how he dealt with the detail problem of such abundance in the Sierras. Love your blog and love your work — most inspiring. Keep it up!

  16. Just Plain Jane Says:

    Leave the trees, trees, trees to others. I love what you’ve chosen to paint. The two tiny spots of colors on the chaise lounges absolutely knock my socks off (no mean trick when I’m wearing compression pantyhose) and if you were to ask me, I’d say you’ve captured the mountain forest feeling perfectly in every one of these. In fact the last one, with no sign of human life, pretty as it is, is my least favorite.

  17. Donn Says:

    These are really nice sketches. Looks inviting. Looks like you narrowed down your views pretty good. Nice work.

  18. Jan Says:

    I like your clever use of white space for trees on the Horsetail Falls sketch. All sketches are wonderful! Thank you for sharing them.

  19. Shirley Says:

    These are wonderful! I have the same problem sketching when we visit our friends in NH. All I see are trees, trees, trees. But you did find some great buildings!

  20. sandy Says:

    Oh these are glorious, I adore your simple, soft detail approach!

  21. Peggy Says:

    Wonderful sketches, but I so understand your comments about being overwhelmed w/so much beauty…I have some wonderful wooded areas near my home but get lost in all the greens of the woods and never even attempt to sketch out there even though I love it and would love to have it down on paper…Can’t seem to find the “focal point” so ……

  22. Rosemary Says:

    lovely, as always.

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