Thursday, June 22, 2017

Return to Lakewold Gardens

When our group visited Lakewold Gardens in Lakewood for a sketch out, I found that there just hadn't been enough time for drawing as much as I would have, I decided to go back. This stone cherub caught my attention with all the plants surrounding it. Time to get into the zen-zone!
Happy Sketching....

Midsummer Respite

What better place and activity than to spend Midsummer's Day sketching on Vashon Island at the home of an artist. Darsie invited both Tacoma and Port Townsend Urban Sketchers to his home for the usual Tacoma 3rd Wednesday outing. Unfortunately, the PT sketchers couldn't make it due to an accident that blocked their route.

Still, there was a good group of sketchers.

I arrived on the island quite early, so I stopped at a pullout on Quartermaster Bay to do a sketch.

There are so many "destinations" on Darsie's property that it was hard to choose what to sketch. I was thinking of the USk flickr group's weekly theme when I asked him whether he had anything that had been re-purposed. He pointed to the small building that is now their bedroom. It started life as a shed.

More Photos:

--Kate Buike; sketched on 6/21/17

Monday, June 19, 2017

July 2017 Outings

First Saturday Sketch Outing July 1st 
Browns Point Lighthouse Park    
201 Tulalip St. NE, Tacoma WA 98422

Host is Tom Bradley

10:00 AM - We’ll meet at the Browns Point Improvement Club parking lot next to  Lighthouse Park.  Peter Darling has permission from the Club to open the gate for us. They request that we park on the lighthouse side of the lot and vacate by 1:00 PM for a wedding later in the day.

Directions from Interstate 5 in Fife:  Take the 54th Ave exit (past the Poodle Dog Restaurant) to 509 N.  Right on 509 / Marine View Drive to Brown’s Point (past the Cliff House restaurant).  Left at the totem pole / Browns Point Center sign (Le-Lou-Wa Place NE).  Follow this street along the waterfront neighborhood to the parking lot (on Left).

We will regroup at 12:30 PM in the park for a brief sketch sharing and group photo. 

Lunch at the Browns Point Diner after.

6620 East Side Dr NE, Tacoma, WA 98422


Second Thursday July 13th Gig Harbor outing
Paul and Diana Wimber’s garden in Canterwood

 Host: Pam Jenkins

We will meet at 11717 Sorrel Run NW in the Canterwood area, north of Gig Harbor at 10am.  The Wimber’s garden surrounding their house includes lots of lovely little vignettes for us to sketch including a multilevel water feature, huge varieties of flowers, a front entrance, back patio with chairs.  We are welcome to bring a sack lunch in order to continue to enjoy the grounds.  There is a restroom available for us to use.  Parking on Sorrel Run is recommended and you will have to check in at the main gate guard house just off 54th.

From Tacoma Narrows Bridge
Continue north/west on Hwy 16
Exit to Burnham Dr
Go through the traffic circle and exit toward St Anthony’s Hospital (third exit out of circle – Canterwood Blvd).
Go approx. 1.5 miles to the Main Gate entrance to Canterwood on the right.
*Stop at the guard house and tell him you are with Urban Sketchers and are going to the Wimber’s house at 11717 Sorrel Run NW.  He will give you a pass with directions on it.
After the guard house take the first Right (Old Stump) and follow that road to the T (Baker).
Turn Left at the T onto Baker.
Baker becomes Towhee then watch for Sorrel Run on your right.
Turn right onto Sorrel Run.
The Wimber house is the first one on your left on the corner of Sorrel Run and Towhee.
Park along Sorrel Run but not in front of the house. 

If you are coming from the north (Port Orchard):
South/east on Hwy 16
Exit to Purdy
Left on 144th
Right on 54th
Left to Canterwood main gate and continue with instructions from the guard house as above.

Another option for those coming from Tacoma – you can take the exit to Purdy, turn right on 144th, then right on 54th to the main gate entrance. 


Third Wednesday, July 19 - Fort Nisqually

Host: Darsie Beck

Point Defiance State Park
enter from N. Pearl Street and follow the signs

Parking: on site free parking

Please check back for meeting time.  The Fort normally opens at 11am.  We are negotiating for a 10 am early entrance.  

EDIT 6/20 @0036  Confirmed that we may enter at 10 am.  

We will meet at the Fort entrance. There is a covered picnic shelter area to the left of the entrance to gather in case it's raining. Once inside the fort we will gather on the porch of the Factors Home or Large House. The porch is covered and wraps around the building affording good under cover sketching.

There is a small entry fee:  $8, $7 (Senior 65+).

Entry Gate:

 Factor's House:

After our sketch sharing and group photo at the fort we are in close proximity to the Antique Sandwich Shop for those wanting to gather for lunch.

5102 N Pearl St., Tacoma, WA 98407

Friday, June 16, 2017

Mama Duck

Upon our arrival at the site for our sketch outing to the Festival of Sail, I was disappointed that the Mamma Duck was no where to be seen. Upon more exploration, I could just see the tip of her yellow head far down the Foss Waterway. Later another sketcher said she was across from Johnny's Dock, so we resolved to have lunch there in order to sketch the World's Largest Rubber Duck.

Though there was a chilly wind off the Foss Waterway, it didn't rain while we sketched the Tall Ships docked across the way from the Center for Urban Waters.  Urban Sketchers Tacoma played host to a few members of Urban Sketchers Seattle who came down to join us.  We had an excellent view of several ships with classic Tacoma buildings on the hill behind.   The ship I sketched is the Hawaiian Chieftain

After sharing and the group photo....

most of us decamped for lunch at Johnny's Dock. We could definitely see the big duck from there. Mamma Duck is 61 feet tall and weighs 11 tons!

More Photos:

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Our new Google email group

Over the past couple sketch outings I've attended, I've discussed forming a email group on the Google Groups platform.  Most everyone was supportive so this week I started adding email addresses of those who indicated they wanted to join it. 

When our founder, Frances Buckmaster, retired from her role as the Lead Administrator, her private email group was retired as well.  In the past, when members of Urban Sketchers Tacoma received emails about outings and other information of interest, it was via her private group.   

So another method of communication was needed.  While there is a Facebook group, I do not want that to be the only way with which to communicate as there are some people who, understandably, will not join Facebook. 

This group is our informal information communication forum.  Upcoming sketch outings will be posted there.  It's also a place to ask questions and share other information of interest to our members.  

To post to this group, send email to Any member may initiate or reply to a message.  Just remember, if you just click "reply" it goes to everyone.  If you only want to reply to one person, you have to change the address in the "to" line to that of the one person!

If you would like to join and haven't indicated that at a sketch outing recently, there is now a "widget" in the right side margin of this blog:  "Join our Google group".  Put your email adress in the box and answer the question.  Myself and another admin will receive your request and add you to the group. 

--Kate Buike

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Port of Tacoma - Les Davis Pier

Participated in the June get together at Les Davis Pier.

Les Davis became famous for inventing the 'Herring Dodger' (an attachment to your fishing line that makes your lure dance) in the early '30s.

Pen, ink and wash in a Moleskine watercolor book.

Sketching at the Pier

We met at the pier for our sketch outing yesterday, the first Saturday in June. I'd sketched the big red fire boat before so I was looking around for something else to catch my eye and interest. Then the cafe on the landing put out its big pirate skeleton. Score!

He became the basis for my montage of the location. Next I stood with AJ on the pier to sketch the fire boat from a distance. Lastly, I sketched a view of the rest of the pier..

In an effort to fit into a smaller bag and carry less, I finally filled my Pocket Palette. It does work well.  I wanted extra mixing area so I also clipped on this cheap, plastic mixing tray.


We had a good sized group:

--Kate Buike