carriage best

060621 amtrak train to oakland

After a very long time, I finally went on a train. On public transportation, first time since the start of the Strange Times. It was a big step. California is Opening Up, I’m all vaccinated, and I needed to get out of Davis for the day. So, I took the train down to Oakland, a city that I’ve never actually been to. Amazing isn’t it, I have lived here for sixteen years and yet never been to Oakland. Well I say I’ve never been, I’ve been through it on the BART many times, and I’ve been to the airport once. On the very first trip I took to the US in 2002 I even went to watch the Oaland A’s. I have never been to Oakland proper though; I will post the sketches another day. For now here is the sketch I did in red pen on the Amtrak train to Richmond (I got the BART after that to Oakland). This was the very last page of the Moleskine sketchbook (Sketchbook #39). I liked it do much that a week later I went back on the train, this time heading for San Francisco, where I spent an overnighter exploring and sketching. Another post for that. I opened a brand new Moleskine sketchbook (Sketchbook #40) and on the first page I drew the purple pen train sketch below. People wore their masks except when drinking or eating; the group in front of me here were all cyclists. The trains are never particularly busy when I get on them so it felt quite normal really, and I was I admit delighted to be on the train again. It’s been two years since I had my last sketching day out in San Francisco, amazingly. Every time I travel I think, I’m not going to draw the train again am I, but then I’m there and I think, yes I am actually. Here’s the album of most of my in-voyage sketches (planes, trains and…other trains):

061121 Amtrak train to Emeryville

F Street In May

F Street Davis

This is a building on F Street in downtown Davis. I drew it in May. This was like, a month ago now. It was a hot day, but these days we are in a really bad heatwave – a ‘heat dome’ I heard it called – so May seems like a balmy long-gone era. Who am I kidding, all the days and months roll into one. I have some sketches from Oakland and San Francisco to post, but I’ve not actually done that much Davis sketching lately. Yes it’s too hot, but also I’ve just not been inspired much to draw Davis, it’s so hot and I’m at home anyway. F Street… “F” is for “Father’s Day”, and today is Father’s Day. My dad always said lots of words beginning with “F”, well one “F” word, a lot. Well we Londoners tend to use that word a lot. I used the “F” word quite a lot this morning when we discovered a fairly sizeable black widow making good use of our backyard chair. The hot weather has made them bold. I had to move into executioner mode. I even went and changed costume (from shorts to long sleeve pants) and got the spray and swatter. Well, we can sit safely again on the chair. I know there are more, in Davis there are always more. The heat is on. It’s going to be a long, long summer.