Tag Archives: Watercolor

Journal Entry 2/19/17: Working on Illustrations


Working on three illustrations that will full spreads for an issue of an upcoming publication. I will post once they are published and where you can obtain a copy. Top illustration is done in ink and watercolor. Bottom illustration is a rough experimenting with acrylic, graphite and watercolor. All three illustrations are editorial in nature.



Filed under Illustrations, Watercolor painting

Journal Entry 11/30/2016: After the Storm


Finally after a three day snow storm and digging out (18 inches of new snow), I took a minute to sip coffee and capture this scene from the comfort of my living room. Pen/Ink/Watercolor.

1 Comment

Filed under Sketch Book, Travel Journal

Journal Entry 9/14/16: Viking Cafe


If you ever find yourself in Fergus Falls, Minnesota, make sure the Viking Cafe is on your list of places to hit while you’re there. I was so impressed by the meal I got there last time that I had to illustrate it (above). This was the Roast Turkey Special for @ $8.50 (coffee extra). As I say in my notes this was a true cornucopia of food: Slabs of turkey (white & dark), mashed potatoes and dressing smothered with gravy and peas (from the can) scattered on top, a roll with butter, two little cups of cranberry relish (surprisingly good) and a custard dessert with whip cream and nuts. If you get coffee it is adequate and fresh, because they make it by the gallons, no matter how many people are in the cafe (always full) your cup will never drop below half. Once you experience coffee at the Viking your outlook on life will always be “the cup is half full and please no more coffee.”


Not the most attractive building on the outside, a victim of downtown renewal attempts in the 70s and 80s, but don’t let the outside facade fool you. On the inside the cafe is full of wooden booths where the holes for the old nickelodeons are still visible. There is some gratuitous viking decorations on the wall but the atmosphere is warm and welcoming. If all the seats are taken, which happens often, wait patiently at the front by the till for the next available booth. God (or should I say Odin) I love this place.


Fergus Falls is located 50 miles SE of Fargo, ND and 180 miles NW of the Twin Cities on I-94. The cafe is on main street on the south side. Parking in the back. There has been a Viking Cafe long before there ever was a professional football team called the Minnesota Vikings.

Leave a comment

Filed under Illustrations, Sketch Book, Travel Journal, Watercolor painting

Journal Entry 9/12/16: Watercolor Palette


Been a long time since I’ve done anything for myself. Hopefully this will be the beginning of some creative blog entries. Quick sketch (pen and ink, watercolor) of a watercolor palette I made from an Altoids tin. Here is a link to a post I did on how to make this handy little travel kit.  Since it’s creation I’ve taken it everywhere. It easily fits in a shirt pocket for all you hipsters with untucked plaid shirts and skinny jeans that are too tight even for  this tiny master kit of art to fit  in the back pocket.

Leave a comment

Filed under Painting, Sketch Book, Watercolor painting

Studio Hacks 2: Travel Watercolor Kit


This is a portable watercolor kit I made from items I already had. This kit is based off of this kit I saw on instructables.

Materials needed to make a travel watercolor kit.

Materials needed to make a travel watercolor kit.

The materials I gathered are: White acrylic paint, Altoid mint container, an empty Dentyne gum pack (inside) and Kitchen/Bath silicone (I used clear).

Inside of Altoid's tin with several coats of white acrylic paint

Inside of Altoid’s tin with several coats of white acrylic paint

I painted the inside of the tin and cover with several coats of the white acrylic paint. This should prevent the cover from rusting. The inside of the cover can be used to hold water or for mixing which is what I use it for. The white allows me to see the true colors as I mix.

Silicon added to set paint holder into tin.

Silicon added to set paint holder into tin.

The gum holder will hold the paints. After the blue wrapper has been removed I put silicone on the bottom of the tin and on the bottom of the empty gum packet. The paint holder is then placed into the tin.



A bead of silicon is then placed around the paint holder to seal it in to prevent water from getting under the paint holder.

Kit with paints and brush.

Kit with paints and brush.

I used what paints I had on hand. I had some tubes of paint that had hardened in the tube. I cut the tubes open and added some water to soften them up and transferred the paints to the “pans.” I then cut a brush to fit in the cover of the kit when the cover is closed.

The Author's travel watercolor kits.

The Author’s travel watercolor kits.

I already have a great travel watercolor kit, above on the left. A Windsor Newton kit that I’ve used for years. What I like about my new kit is that I can put it in my shirt pocket when I don’t have room for my other kit.

Leave a comment

Filed under Painting, Studio Hacks, Watercolor painting