Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Houston Sketch Outing Sunday, Sept. 18 @ Rice University 1:30 - 3:30. 
Houston area sketchers are meeting Sunday, Sept. 18 at 1:30 p.m.  at the Brochstein Pavilion Cafe at Rice University. We'll meet at 1:30, sketch and then meet up again at 3 to have a sketchbook throwdown and group photo. Stay longer to have refreshments in the cafe and meet fellow sketchers.
Bring your own materials. Bring a friend, and if this is your first outing with us, welcome! A sketch outing isn’t a class, workshop or competition. It's an opportunity for creative people to meet each other, draw together, and share their sketches with each other and online. You can find parking info on Rice's website.

What are the rules?
1.  There are no rules.
2.  Anyone can participate, be it to draw for 20 minutes or the full scheduled time.
3.  Any level of ability is welcome, from veteran artists to first time sketchers.
4.  Bring your own sketching gear.  A hat and sunscreen are a good idea.
5.  Kids under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Upcoming Fort Worth/Dallas Sketch Outing Dates

Upcoming DFW sketch outing dates. They are on 3rd Saturday of the month, unless noted.  Locations and other details are announced about 2 weeks before each outing.  If you are not on our email list, send your email to me at jim@townscape.com, and we'll add you.  Hope to see you there:
Aug 20
Sept 17
Oct 15
Nov 19
Dec 17
Jan 21
Feb 18
Mar 18
Apr 22 (4th Sat)
May 20
June 17 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Paddock Viaduct, downtown Fort Worth

This spot on the Trinity River, at the foot of the bluffs where the original Fort Worth was established as a U.S. Army frontier outpost, was a ferry crossing point prior to 1890s, when a narrow suspension bridge was built.  This bridge was built in 1912, and still serves the downtown area admirably.

Friday, May 13, 2016

DFW Sketch Outing May 21

Greetings sketchers!

This month’s Fort Worth/Dallas sketch outing will be Saturday, May 21, 2:30pm on the Trinity River on the north side of downtown Fort Worth.  This area offers myriad sketching possibilities, including the stunning Radio Shack Riverfront Campus (now shared with Tarrant County College), the Trinity Trails, a statue of Fort Worth founder Major Ripley Arnold, the decommissioned Fort Worth Power and Light Company Power Plant (circa 1912), the Paddock Viaduct (also known as Main Street Bridge, listed on National Register of Historic Places), and stunning views of the historic Tarrant County Courthouse and downtown rising above the wooded river banks.

We will meet at 2:30pm at John V. McMillan Plaza, located at the north end of downtown’s Taylor Street, where the street terminates in a cul-de-sac at the river’s edge.  This is also where we’ll meet for the sketchbook throw down and group photo at 4:30.  For those who can stay, we’ll pick a downtown venue for happy hour socializing afterwards.

There is limited on-street parking (free on weekends) in the cul-de-sac and on Taylor Street. There’s additional parking at the Panther Island Parking Lot, 395 West Purcey Street.  This link will take you to a map.   

Bring a friend, and if this is your first outing with us, welcome!  A SketchCrawl isn’t a class, workshop or competition.  It's an opportunity for creative people to meet each other, draw together, and share their sketches with each other and online. 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Tiny Houses for Earth Day

The big hit at the Earth Day festivities at Dallas' Fair Park was the "Tiny House" exhibit--tens of thousands waited in 30-minute lines to check these out.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Spring break in the UK

Train ride to Stirling outside of Edinburgh, to visit Stirling Castle. Spring break coincided with a business trip my husband had to make to Aberdeen. So my son and I went to the UK to visit my Urban Sketcher friend Isabelle, in London and then meet my hubby in Scotland for a little exploring - and of course sketching.

My sketch shows just a part of the gallery at Holyrood House Palace in Edinburgh, Scotland. 

The Great Gallery at the Palace at Holyrood House, the largest room in the palace, links the King's Closet with the former Queen's apartments in the west range. The gallery is decorated with 110 portraits of the Scottish monarchs, beginning with the legendary Fergus I, who supposedly ruled from 330 BC. The portraits were all completed between 1684 and 1686 by Jacob de Wet.  The palace as it stands today was built between 1671-1678 in a quadrangle layout, approximately 230 feet (70 m) from north to south and 230 feet (70 m) from east to west, with the exception of the 16th-century north-west tower built by James VSir William Bruce designed the 3-storey plus attic Baroque palace for Charles II upon the restoration of the monarchy. 

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Back to the Rodeo

Yesterday was the official sketch out for urban sketchers in Houston. Carolyn and I wandered around the Reliant Hall livestock exhibit first. Then we wandered out into the carnival, which had not only amazing rides, but equally amazing foods. Deep-fried Nutella, anyone?

I have never been over to the Reliant Arena where the horse competitions are held. Carolyn was interested in the llama and alpaca exhibit. The center animal, who looks like a dissipated rock star, is an alpaca. He barely registered my presence. The animal on the lower left is a llama. These animals are very alert, curious and responsive. Most exhibit animals ignore the viewers. This one followed every move I made. Llamas aren't know to be particularly friendly, but they are apparently pretty smart. One of the events is an obstacle course for llamas. Think a combination of the horse jumping and the dog agility trials. The young people showing the animals take this very seriously.

This is the last weekend of the rodeo, so that's it for another year.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

DFW Sketch Outing March 19th!

Our next Fort Worth-Dallas sketch outing will be 2:30 pm Saturday, March 19th at Continental Bridge in Dallas!  Plan to meet at Gateway Plaza West on the west side of the bridge. Parking lot can be accessed just off of Canada Drive. Do not park at Trinity Grove. Continental Bridge has some stunning views of downtown Dallas and the Margaret Hill Hunt bridge designed by Santiago Calatrava.  The weather should be cool enough to enjoy a great afternoon of sketching. 

This month’s outing will be hosted by Lisa Horne, a long-time USk Texas regular who hosted last year’s very successful outing in West Village.  We will meet to the west side of the Continental Bridge for introductions and an overview of the afternoon (15 min), then disperse to sketch singly, in pairs or in groups as you wish.  We’ll reconvene at a couple of hours later to share sketchbooks and for a group photo.  Bring a friend, and if this is your first outing with us, welcome!  A SketchCrawl isn’t a class, workshop or competition.  It's an opportunity for creative people to meet each other, draw together, and share their sketches with each other and online. 

Questions? Contact Jim Richards at jim@townscape.com

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Let's Rodeo!

Today was my trip to the livestock show to get in some sketching time. Of course, I had to go over and  watch the very patient ponies hauling little kids round and round.
Some were curious about the very large sleeping pig. Some, not so much.

This Brahmin and his kin were as patient as large dogs waiting for their turn for judging in the show ring. The drawing doesn't begin to convey the size of these beasts up close.

The sheep don't like the noise, the crowds, the kids. They most kept a wary distance at the far side of the pen. This was in the birthing area and there were several wobbly little lambs among them. The large female in the foreground watched me intently as I drew.
The little goat was just sprouting the buds of his adult horns. He slept peacefully and ignored everyone.
All in all it was a very fun day.

Saturday, February 6, 2016


The next sketch outing for Fort Worth/Dallas will be Saturday, February 20 in Fort Worth. This month we’ll meet at 2:30pm in front of the Livestock Exchange Building, 131 E. Exchange Avenue in the heart of the Stockyards historic district. We will meet briefly, then draw until 4:30, and then gather to share sketchbooks and a group photo. The Stockyards are a “target-rich environment” with a wealth of interesting subject matter for sketchers—historic buildings, lots of interesting locals and visitors, great signs and details, sculpture, and a longhorn herd walk at 4pm, so it ought to be a grand time. You may want to linger afterwards for happy hour or dinner with old and/or new friends. There’s a large free parking lot at the far east end of Exchange Avenue, and typically lots of on-street parking in the western side of the district (west of N. Main Street). Hope to see you there!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

50th Worldwide Sketchcrawl- Houston

Chris, Mary, Brian, Kim, Judith, Carolyn, Adine, Suzanne and Katerina..not pictured: Ken

For today's sketchcrawl we chose the warmth of the Jesse Jones building at the Houston Public Library. It started out pretty nippy for sketching and the library has large windows with good views of downtown.  10 sketchers showed up, which I think is a new record for the Houston group.

Friday, January 22, 2016


I know that the weather isn't optimal all over Texas for tomorrow's worldwide sketchcrawl, but I'd like to encourage the urban sketchers to go out tomorrow. Even coffee shop sketches would be interesting.
Here are the plans for the Houston group as posted by Judith:
On Saturday, January 23 meet up at the Houston Public Library Central location, (Jesse Jones Building) 500 McKinney. The library opens at 10 am so if the weather is bad indoor sketching is still possible. Library parking is $2.00 an hour. In the area: City Hall park, reflecting pool, Allen Parkway, Sam Houston historic homes, the Ideson building.
We will convene afterwards for pictures and lunch.

Results and pictures to follow in another post. Hope you can make it.