Sunday, September 14, 2014

South Lake Union

Donna's parents visited from Connecticut and stayed at the Residence Inn on South Lake Union. I drew the view from their balcony as we watched the sun set.

(And a gentle reminder to visit and enter your email to continue receiving updates when I move to the new site...)

Wednesday, September 10, 2014


The Gage Academy where I teach is offering one-night "teaser" classes, where students pay only $75 and get a whirl-wind preview of what would normally be a five-week class. After introductions, reviewing materials and setting up our still-lifes, I had a very short time to whip out a demo. Students loved the no-nonsense, let's get to it approach. And I get to do it again tomorrow in color.

Also a reminder that I am moving to Please visit the new improved site and enter your email so you will continue to receive posts when this one goes bye-bye. Thanks!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

New Website Announcement:

Hey folks! If you're seeing this, chances are good you are a subscriber. Thanks tons! However, I have a new, fancier website with the easier to remember URL: that allows me to link to classes, workshops, events, book releases, shows, whatever (like the upcoming Kickstarter campaign to publish my next book, the sequel to Now Where Was I? A Sketchbook Memoir, which has almost sold out!), and I'll be migrating this blog over to it. No ads, no shenanigans, just the drawings, comics and class demos you've been seeing here.

Please visit and enter your email in the box at the lower left and you'll continue to get updates when this bloodspot thing goes bye bye.

Thanks for subscribing,


Okay, back to work.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

In-class Demo for 8-26-14

I did this drawing during tonight's class, the last of this session of Illustrative Drawing at the Gage. The in-progress shot was taken while accentuating the outlines and before applying the hatching.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Gasworks Park

When the group met at Gasworks last week, Donna and I arrived early and set up before the rain started. I had the basic lines drawn before the rain drove us away. Props to those sketchers who stuck it out. I went back this week to finish the drawing in the sun.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Another In-Class Demonstration

The demo from this week's Illustrative Dreawing class at Gage Academy.

Seeing Double

I drew the first sketch of my cousin's campsite while seated next to a smoking fire at our family reunion on Green River. Then yesterday I painted the view from in front of Herkimer Coffee on Phinney Ridge. After posting them, I was struck by how, as tiny thumbnail images on my phone, similar in composition and color they are: the heavy right side; the white left side; the tree and the telephone pole; the trike and the bike; the blue cubes. I guess my mind was kind of stuck on this particular layout.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Rain City Burgers, Roosevelt Ave, Seattle

Above is the final painting for Rain City Burgers. After Thursday it'll be displayed inside. At left is the original urban sketch done from across the street. Big thanks to the guys for asking me to draw this for the place and for offering great burgers, including vegetarian and vegan at low prices. If you stop in to check it out, tell 'em I sent you.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Carmelita's Coffee, Shilshole, Seattle

Met the Seattle Urban Sketchers at Shilshole Marina, Seattle and set up my stool at Carmelita's Coffee and Desserts, next door to Surf Ballard. The owner of this little coffee trailer gave me a latté after seeing the drawing. Thanks, Maria! Go check them out. Tell 'em Steve sent you.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Another Gage Academy still-life demo, 8.5" x 12" watercolor and ink.

Last night's in-class demo for my Illustrative Drawing class at Gage Academy. 8.5" x 12" watercolor and pen.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Green River

My extended maternal Irish family meets every August on Green River for our annual reunion. I drew this between inner tubing the easy rapids and cooking s'mores.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Sleepless in Seattle

Two drawings commissioned by the real estate agent for the long-time home-owners who just sold it. The bench was donated by Tom Hanks after filming ended. These were drawn from photos provided by the agent.

Monday, August 4, 2014

House in Ballard

Commission for the owner of this house, arranged as a gift from his tenant, a kind yoga instructor who saw my work hanging in the Ballard Starbucks.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Cabin Stove

To raise money to pay the property tax and for upkeep at our family's property on Green River, we hold an auction at our yearly reunion each August. A cousin asked me to submit a drawing he could frame for the silent table part of the auction. I redrew the old kitchen stove I'd sketched on our last bike ride up to the property.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Lake Union Houseboat Sketchcrawl

It was a fun challenge drawing this scene (I added the color at home) on a rocking and rolling dock. Each time a yacht or tour boat went buy we wobbled, and I didn't realize until too late that my satchel and its contents were soaking in lake water. As we drew, the owner, Rick Miner, came out and used the megaphone (seen on the table in the picture) to yell at some party boaters to slow down because the wake was slopping all over. He came out and introduced himself and we exchanged cards. Nice guy! Check him out at

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Last Night's Class Demo

Speed sketch, done while students watched and worked on their own drawings, with an emphasis on capturing detail, rather than accuracy and proportion.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

In-class Drawing Demo

In-class demo from my Illustrative Drawing class at Gage Academy. 8.5" x 12", India ink and watercolor.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Mass and Space on Vashon Island

Sketching with another artist who has different preferences for subject is a challenge. I like to draw dense clusters of objects, while Donna focuses on the play of light in the spaces between objects. Urban Sketchers Seattle met on Vashon Island Friday. Having never been there before, Donna and I spent way too much time wandering around, comparing locations. We finally settled where she had a view of the Sound, while I drew the nearby clump of mailboxes.

House on Queen Anne, Seattle

Strange coincidence: When the owners of this house put it up for sale, their daughter commissioned me to draw it as a gift to her parents. Months later, I hung a print of it in another Seattle neighborhood and got a call from a man who said his parents were visiting from out of town and saw the drawing. His mother looked closely and said, "Isn't that your house?" This was the new owner of the same house! He hired me to redraw a new original for him. The new version is on the top.

Monday, July 14, 2014

The Mission

Drawn with the Urban Sketchers in Pioneer Square, Seattle.