Friday, January 30, 2015

Sunnyvale Baylands Park. Thursday, January 29, 2015

A new site, discovered and scouted by Marilyn.     With only a one mile perimeter trail we did less Hiking and more Sketching than the Hike & Sketch norm.   Instead of a 20 minute hike, a 20 minute sketch, another 20 minute hike, another 20 minute sketch and so on; we walked for 5 minutes and then sketched for 30 - 35 minutes, walked for 5 minutes, sketched for 30 - 35 minutes, .... .   Which gave us ample time to turn sketches into completed paintings.    The site offered a wide variety of subjects, two of which were particularly popular:  rows of Eucalypti with their wide range of colors and a tree "tunnel" or alee of dormant hardwoods.

For more information about the Sunnyvale Baylands Park, check out:    

Upcoming Paintsites:
  • Thursday, February 5, 2015:   Winchester Mystery House, San Jose
  • Thursday, February 19, 2015:  NEW - Maryknoll Seminary, Los Altos
For complete details see the Watercolor Society website or the February Newsletter.

(Additional finished paintings from 2014 and earlier 2015 Paintsites arrive weekly so check past postings every so often for recent additions.)

On the trail.

We paint the saltwater and man-made freshwater marshes ... 

At the next stop, some keep at it with the marsh and waterfowl, others turn their attention to the eucalypti ...

While Laurie, Lisha and Iris ventured onto the Observation Ramp to get up close and personal with the wildlife.

And Rich finds the best seat in the park no matter which way he looks.

Then it's lunch by the Bay (note the eucalypti in the background and the entrance to the tree "tunnel" on the right).

Lunch over, Iris, Lisha, Yan and Helen compare the day's work so far.
We were so happy to have Elaine back with the group.

Jane's 1st painting:  a marsh and eucalypti.

Jane's 2nd painting:  a marsh, trail, and the tree "tunnel" in the distance which drew her on to ...
Jane's 3rd painting:  looking down the tree "tunnel" and ...

Jane's 4th painting: the tree "tunnel" with fellow artists Jenny & Sylvia in the middle-ground.

Jenny's 1st painting:   one of the marshes and distant lines of eucalypti.

Jenny's final painting:  half way down the tree "tunnel".

We seldom do plein air portraits but Lisha's wonderful sketch of Pat merits recognition.

Pat's 1st sketch

Pat's 2nd painting:  the Observation Ramp over a marsh

Pat's 3rd painting: Eucalypti and marsh

Pat's 4th painting: the tree "tunnel" from the opposite end.

Rich's 1st painting:  eucalypti & cattails (?)

Rich's 2nd painting: Observation Ramp and East Bay hills.

Rich's 3rd painting: deep in a eucalypti grove.

Sylvia's take on the tree "tunnel" looking toward the sculpture near the park entrance.

Sylvia experimented with watercolor pencil at the first few stops.

Brad's painting of marsh and Santa Clara tech industries with the 49er's Levi's Stadium in right background - but you recognized that anyway didn't you?

Brad's sketch of back-lit eucalypti

 I hope many more wonderful sketches and paintings will be added in the coming week so be sure to visit this posting again!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Gurdwara Sikh Temple, San Jose. Thursday, January 22, 2015.

Wouldn't you know it!   As soon as Marilyn hones her weather forecasting skills to the nth degree and gets the SCVWS Home Page and the Paintsites e-mail Weather Cancellation notifications fine-tuned, Winter goes away.    Or at least that was the case on Thursday --- probably because this Paintsite was discovered and coordinated by Sylvia.   (Hard to imagine, but it's never rained on a Paintsite she and Jenny organized.   Or at least not rained very hard.)    The architecture is quite extraordinary and our gracious hosts, Gurdev Kalsi and Kirpal Atwal, and the many friendly worshipers made us feel very welcome.        

What made the day even more special was that early SCVWS member Jo Mary Keith joined the Paintsites group for the first time in a number of years.   Welcome back Jo Mary. 

For more information about the spectacular Gurdwara Sikh Temple in the East San Jose Foothills, see:

Upcoming Paintsites:
  •  Thursday, January 29, 2015:   NEW - Sunnyvale Baylands Park, Sunnyvale:  "easy" Hike & Sketch and we'll never be far from the parking lot.
For complete details see the Watercolor Society website or the January Newsletter.    And also check the February Newsletter for our exciting February Paintsites.

Completed paintings keep trickling in for some 2014 Paintsites - periodically check old postings for recent additions.

Finally, there's still time to review and order a copy of the MixBook Photo Album presented to Jenny & Sylvia at the Annual Holiday Party.

For a look at the album, go to:

If you'd like a copy, send Marilyn a note at as she's worked out a group discount for us.

Most of the images shown are unfinished works and appear washed-out because of the bright sun --- but they're not really.  Visit again to see the completed, scanned or re-photographed paintings in all their true glory.
Is this an intimidating subject to paint or what?
Not for Melanie and Liz!   In fact, here they are laughing in the face of the challenge.
Melanie's painting.
Not to be outdone, Leslie and John took on the Main Di Wan Hall head-on.
John and Leslie really focused on their subject.

Leslie's painting

John and his first painting of the Main Di Wan Hall
John's second painting done after lunch

Iris, Lisha and Helen working on the complicated corners of the Main Di Wan Hall.
Iris and her fine painting.
Lisha and another fine painting.
And Helen and yet another fine painting.
It was cold in the shade but Marilyn wanted a one-point perspective view.
Marilyn, cold but smiling ...
with good reason to smile having done a fine painting like this.
Jenny has finisher her painting, John is still working on his sketch
Jenny's finished painting.
Jane and her little square masterpiece.
Brad looking mighty pleased with his painting.
Yan working on a corner of the Main Di Wan Hall

We didn't catch Dick at work but here's his painting of the same corner of the Main Hall on which Yan worked.
While it was a bright clear day, a light breeze chilled my hands to where I could not finish the painting plein air.     I finished it in studio Friday.     Dick

Sylvia and long-time SCVWS member Jo Mary.
Sylvia's preliminary sketch and finished painting.
Jo Mary's first plein air paintings in a number of years.

Lunch.  (photo by Jane)
Helen and the free lunch the Sikhs provide for all.  (photo by Jane)