Inktober is among us and today’s prompt is roasted. Never participated before and some of these my forth coming puns will be a stretch.


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Field Journal

I started a field journal a few weeks ago to record my interactions with the natural world. I try to record the date, time and weather. My sketches are meant to be more informative than artistic. Above is a sketch of some turkeys that frequent our yard. Yes I know turkeys is spelled wrong and something I didn’t catch until I made this post. I have since fixed it. That’s the beauty of it being your journal you can constantly change it, fix it and add to it.

I have Purple Martin gourds in my back yard and today was a sad day when the last of the nestlings fledged.


Above is an entry from a recent butterfly  outing looking for Black Swallow Tails, which we never saw. BUT we did see these Mourning Cloaks, Fritillaries and Common Wood Nymphs.

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Seasonal Scratch Board

I was cleaning out my studio and found this scratch board I did a few years ago. Found just in time as America’s favorite pastime takes an all star break.

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[Wilderness] is good for us when we are young, because of the incomparable sanity it can bring briefly, as vacation and rest, into our insane lives. It is important to us when we are old simply because it is there—important, that is, simply as an idea.

— From “Wilderness Letter,” Wallace Stegner, 1960

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Traditional Illustration

In my last post I scanned my pencil drawing of a purebred cattleman with his prize herd sire. I enhanced it with Photoshop. Since then I took a mix of cadmium orange and burnt amber and did a wash over the drawing to create a monochromatic painting (above). I’m still a traditionalist. I like the wash better than the digital color. The wash does a better job of creating a look and feel and maintaining subtle tones and detail. However, putting a wet brush to a completed drawing is not for the faint of heart. I understand why many artist are finishing their art with Photoshop, because you can’t undo (cmd + Z) a bad paint job.

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Prize Hereford Bull

9×6, graphite on watercolor paper. Color changed in Photoshop.

My uncle with his herd sire. A registered Hereford bull. This was back in the day when purebreds were vertically challenged (short legs).

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Adding Color

22 x 9 inch graphite on heavy watercolor paper.

I’m working on some agriculturally related illustrations for an up coming publication. When I started the illustration above I kept anding texture and value. I got way more detailed than I intended. I liked the way it looked. When I showed it to the client they said , “add color.” So I did. Adding color for me is dipping a brush in water and paint and going for it. A lot of color these days are added digitally. I still can’t duplicate what I can do with a brush. I can’t undo it, but hey, that’s half the fun. Below are the results.

22 x9 inches, Watercolor washes over graphite on watercolor paper.



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