jog on

norh davis greenbelt 011021 sm

We live near the North Davis Green Belt, and that’s where I walk or run most days. I started running a little bit in 2019 but after the Turkey Trot I picked it up a lot more by the start of 2020, intending to do all these 5k races, and I did the Davis Stampede no sweat and signed up for the Lucky Run, and then coronovirus came along and that was that. So I started running more in general, as if training for these runs that were not going to happen, building up to not just 3 mile but 4 mile runs (I never managed further than that), improving my times each time, usually getting up and running just after sunrise so the hot weather wouldn’t drain me. And then when the fires came and the sky got smoky from August to October, that stopped all of that, and it’s taken me a bit of time to get back to running regularly, but as 2020 ended I decided to get back out more, and I’ve been doing 2 mile runs each time, not fast, but as regularly as I can. I managed a 3 mile run yesterday. It’s the shower afterwards I look forward to most. I couldn’t run marathons, at least I don’t see that in my future, mostly because I don’t want to. Running for more than 26 miles! At some point it’s like, ok this is a bit pointless. At least, this year’s London marathon looked a bit pointless. Due to the coronavirus, rather than being an epic journey in the rain through the streets of Britain’s capital dressed as a kiwi fruit, crossing over Tower Bridge, doing the Lambeth Walk, going down the Strand, having a banana and running up the Mall to Buck House, this year they just had a few proper runner starting before dawn and just running round and round and round St.James’s Park like the Indy 500 or something. They told everyone else they had to run virtually, in their own areas, dressed up as mangoes or peaches or whatever. You do feel great after a good run though, even when not dressed as a fruit, and with all the fun stuff in the world happening,  running helps because it’s like you are trying to outrun it, like Brave Sir Robin. “Run away! Run away!” You have to be mindful on the paths though, trying to keep a good distance from everyone else, so I always end up verging off when there are people on the path. I remember early in the pandemic, everybody gave everybody a wide berth, people crossed the street or went around parked cars. That was my favourite time in the pandemic, people crossing the street to avoid you, it was like “finally this is ok”. Back then, they told everyone to stay home, so there were suddenly more people outside walking than ever. 

Anyway I drew that sketch above whilst walking the Green Belt, I was stood off of the path and on the grass, I like this intersection of several paths and that big old wooden house in the background. This is probably my favourite sketch of this year so far, I like this one. It reminds me of all the walks we’ve done this year.

 

dog statue on the greenbelt

This isn’t a real dog, it’s one that was turned into metal by a wizard or something, probably because it was off its leash. Riding a tricycle. Or as Yoda would call them, a docycle. Bit of Star Wars humour there, cheer us up in these dark times. These trying times. Or as Yoda would call them… Down below is another sketch from the path, this time of a neon yellow sign, indicating “bike” “person” “go down left slightly”, not necessarily in that order. Along with another sign lower down that says “wear a mask” “stay 6ft apart” and “wash your hands”, not necessarily in that order. I like the shape of that building in the background, it’s like an opera house made of cereal boxes. I like the way it forms triangles or as Yoda would call them etc and so on. Honestly Yoda give it a break mate, it’s been a difficult year for everyone without you giving it all that. I haven’t even got the energy to shoehorn in a joke about this week’s impeachment trial or as Yoda would call it impeachment do-al (the joke there being ‘dual’ impeachment I suppose?) because we’re done with the Yoda stuff now. 

Catalina Ave, Davis

let them eat cake

C Street Davis

This is ‘Let Them Eat Cake’, they make cakes, and when you buy them they will let you eat them. It’s a good name, they are a well-known local business. Like most people I like cake, though I don’t eat cake very often. Birthdays, usually a good time. My favourite cake is probably a Victoria Sponge Cake, classic simple British cake with a layer of jam in the middle, and maybe some of that nice icing on top but that’s not really necessary. That and a cup of tea, yes please guv. ‘Let Them Eat Cake’ is a phrase commonly attributed to Marie Antoinette, headless Austrian wife of the headless French King Louis XVI. Of course the phrase has been translated wrong over the years, she was supposed to have said ‘Let Them Eat Brioche’ but most English people would have been like, what, eh, bri-what, what’s that fancy foreign food, I don’t know what a croissant is. So they said ‘cake’ instead. Or maybe, maybe the mis-translation goes deeper. Maybe it’s “Let the Meat Cake”, that is, “Let the Meat Brioche”, which when you think about it, that’s where we get Meat Loaf. And I do mean the singer. It could also have been “Let Them Meet Cake”, like perhaps cake was a person that they needed to met to discuss their grievances about food, perhaps his name was Monsieur Brioche, maybe the famous brioche was named after him, that’s a thing that happens, see for example the sandwich. Imagine if you will that the Earl of Sandwich was in charge of free school meals, and the king’s wife said that we should “Let Them Meet Sandwich” to discuss increasing the size of food packages for those in need, you can see how it would be mistranslated to “Let Them Eat Sandwich”. We’ll never know, we’ll never know. Of course there is zero evidence whatsoever that Marie Antoinette ever said such a thing, so all this silliness is just as valid as any purported historical fact. Of course Marie Antoinette wasn’t the only historical figure with a very-probably-made-up story about cake associated with them. King Alfred the Great, the King of Wessex who was on the run from invading Danish armies, famously burnt the cakes while hiding out in Somerset at a West Country peasant woman’s hovel. “Ok Alf I will let you stay here but can you watch these cakes while I just go and feed my goats? Cheers my lovely.” “Right, right, cakes, cakes.” (A few hours later) “Alfred what the hell! Seriously, you had one job, you’re like a chocolate teapot.” “I did wonder what that smell was. I thought it was my socks, I’ve not changed them in six months.” “Well you may as well take them, perhaps you can throw them at the Vikings, they are rock hard now.” “Good idea! I’ll throw them at the Danes! Let them eat cake!” “Good idea? More like a GREAT idea, amirite?” I imagine it went down something like this, but with a lot more alliteration and no rhyming. But Alfred the Great never let the cakes burn, it’s another old myth, but again one that doesn’t matter if it’s true or not. And these days, we have the Great British Bake-Off, which Alfred the Great would have been terrible at. Not being technically British for one thing, that being something different back in 870 AD, plus also being very bad with cakes. There was a show in America called ‘Cake Wars’ for a while, but I think it was cancelled because nobody could think of any good cake / war puns, though there are many to pick from.

Coming back to reality and away from ideas for Horrible Histories sketches, I drew this late in the afternoon shortly before it got dark, and it was pretty cold out, cold for Davis anyway. This was the short of sketch that I would have loved to have taken round to the pub to warm up and finish off there over a pint, but the pubs are all closed. This pandemic, man. I need a cake.

fifth street between b and c

 5th st panorama, Davis

This is Fifth Street, between B and C. (Click on the image to see it in more detail, on my Flickr site). That is the Newman Chapel on the left there, with the blue building also bein part of the Newman complex. The last time I drew this building was two years ago, January 2019, shortly after the terrible news of young Davis Police Officer Natalie Corona’s death, shot in cold blood by a man who lived a block away. That was an awful tragedy, and today (January 10) marks two years since it happened. The spot where it happened is now marked with a bench commemorating Officer Corona, which you can make out on the right of the drawing. Still unbelievable, the events of that night. I think that was the first time we had to ‘shelter-in-place’ since coming to Davis (obviously much more familiar with the term now). I always think about it when passing down this stretch of Fifth. I drew most of this at lunchtime when on my way from home to a meeting on campus at the Silo, though I did pop into the football shirt shop (Football and Lifestyle) on the way and pick up the new Spurs 3rd kit, looks great.

the dying spark, you left your mark on me

3rd st Davis sunset

One from mid-December 2020. I didn’t sketch much in December, I found it a tricky month to get drawing. I mean, that’s not unusual. Looking at the chart I made from before, Decembers typically make up only about 3.7% of my annual drawing. Ok I will be honest, I made that statistic up, but it sounds about right. If I ever get the inclination I will actually do a statistical study of when my sketches were made and where, and with what pen or sketchbook, indoors or outdoors, in Davis or elsewhere, with or without colour, sketches per week, if there are trends with certain times of year or days of the week. And then I will use this data to create the perfect urban sketcher. Then I can predict what my year will look like to some degree of accuracy. You might be thinking, oh he is joking here, Pete says this stuff but isn’t really serious. To which I will say “exhibit (a), look at my previous post showing my chart of sketches from 2013-2020”, and “exhibit (b) I have spent almost a third of my life working for top-level statisticians. Not that I understand even one speck of dust of the sort of statistical work they do, I stopped doing maths at 16 with my GCSE (I got a grade C, which was the highest possible for the class I was in) (when I was at school, prior to the GCSE years I was in the top class for maths, but hated it, as I was taught by a certain Mr.Blindt, who was old school before there was old school, and his classes terrified me almost as much as the subject matter itself. So I asked to move down into the second-tier class, Miss Barker’s class, which was less stressful, but it meant I could feel alright about my grades (I even came top of the class in several tests), but it meant that the highest possible grade for my final GCSE exam was a C. I think it left out all the really hard stuff like sin/cos/tan and long division, and adding and subtracting and numbers and things. Grade C was a pass, and that was enough. I was more interested in art and languages.) (Incidentally, I actually only got grade A in two of my GCSE subjects, Art and German. In GCSE Art I got an “A” for every single piece of homework over the course of those two years, with one exception – the very first piece of homework assigned, for which I got a “D”. I didn’t mind, I didn’t expect a good grade for that joke. The homework assignment was “draw a part of your body” so I drew my eyebrow. I remember the boy passing back the homework assignments was a fairly mouthy kid who hadn’t been in any of my classes before, and he said loudly “hahaha, you got a D? You’re rubbish at drawin’!” That alone made it worth it.) (A-Level was a different story. I actually got a D overall for the whole thing. I was a bit more disappointed with that, but frankly my interest in the subject of art itself had waned so much, as had my interest in school life in general. I also got a D in A-Level German, a subject I had previously won annual school prizes for, while I ended up giving up A-Level History halfway through. I didn’t really get on with the History teachers, or at least two of the three we had anyway, the third was alright but looked a bit like Bob Geldof. One of the other history teachers seemed to despise me, because she would regularly turn me away from class for being even 30 seconds late, despite the fact nobody else had taken their jackets off; it didn’t help that I would go to my German class right afterwards complaining about her constantly, not knowing that my German teacher, a usually sympathetic guy, was actually married to that same history teacher – a rookie error on my part, to be sure. The other history teacher I had left teaching at the end of the first year to go and be a Welsh-language pop star (if memory serves, it was a band was called “Ian Rush”), but not before stating to the class that “certain people in this class will either fail or not finish this A-Level”, obviously meaning me; our class wasn’t very big, only about seven or eight students. I did enjoy his classes though, learning about the Italian risorgimento, reading Harry Hearder, studying Garibaldi and Mazzini and Cavour, doing the 1848 revolutions, German reunification, Bismarck; I really thought I was doing alright in his class at least, but evidently it wasn’t how the Ian Rush singer felt, and I remember feeling really disheartened by that at the time. My D in art though was honest, and I could have appealed it (if I recall my art teachers may have even suggested it, or maybe it was my head of year, I don’t remember), but I felt that I had really hit a low ebb in life by that point, and my school work was long gone; I hated being 18. I got a place in an art foundation course that didn’t require a very good grade to get into, but then I decided I was done with art and went off to college to do two more years of additional A-Levels, in English and French, with a retaking of German for my third one. Much more successful, and then I went off to university and did French and Drama.) (The decision to study Drama came out of absolutely nowhere, by the way) 

Anyway I was talking about statistics. I think the reason this came up is not because I work with statisticians or because I need to chart my sketches, but because I came across a website this week of football (soccer) statistics called FBRef, and I can’t stop poring over the numbers. I love it, it has everything. Not just xG but xA as well. I never knew I needed to know Moussa Sissoko’s xA score before (“expected assists”) but 0.01 still seems low. Ok maybe I still need to get my head round those particular stats, but I like learning that over the past four years for example he has an 85.4% pass completion rate (3542 passes out of 4041 completed), 3317 of which were with his right foot, 382 with his left, 169 with the head, 96 from throw-ins, and 22 with “other body parts”. I could go on, I’m not obsessed with Moussa Sissoko or anything, but that’s just one example. So maybe I need to up my stats game when analyzing my sketches over the years. How long did each one take me? Was it morning, afternoon, evening? Temperature? Did I finish off at home or do all on-site? Waterbrush or paintbrush? I could get obsessive. (I do get obsessive for example with my running, I make charts detailing this stuff). But to be honest, this isn’t how I improve as a sketcher. This isn’t how I analyze what I’m doing that doesn’t feel right, what I could improve to make it how I actually want it. sometimes you just have to keep doing. Little by little you think, well ok this didn’t work last time, I’ll try that this time. It’s also not a trajectory. I’ve drawn myself into cul-de-sacs before, using one style so much that I realize after a while it’s not the style I really want, and try to pull back to an earlier way of drawing, but my fingers need exercising. Sometimes it is fun to just see what comes out, take the thinking out of it and jump in. Don’t worry about inspiration, just get the pen moving and the inspiration will come. Things such as value and perspective are important technical abilities to learn, but like when I’m coaching soccer I say that the game is the best teacher, with drawing I say that going and looking and doing is the best teacher. So the sketch above, it’s not technically a great drawing, it’s probably not the best sketch I could have done given the temperature, time of day, length of time I had been standing, but I liked it, it was quick. Whereas the one below, on 3rd Street, which was what I had originally set out to draw, I stopped because I wasn’t enjoying it. I felt rusty, it required a bit more thinking than I felt capable of at that moment (and I have drawn this building many times before), so I just turned myself around 180 degrees and drew the view toward campus. Maybe in that sketch I was ‘rubbish at drawin’ and that it was ok, not every sketch has to be an A. So that is the statistic that I can barely quantify, my state of mind, my mood, and my reason for sketching something. I like the sketch above because it represents me saying no to something I’m not enjoying and just jumping in somewhere else instead. And I will keep the one below because, unfinished or not, you can fill the rest in yourself using your imagination, so there’s no need to finish it, really. A bit like my History A-Level. I didn’t really fail at it, and I didn’t really need to finish it, because my imagination filled in the rest. Which is probably why I thought World War 2 was won by Captain America and Bucky, the French Revolution ended when Godzilla ate Napoleon, and Italian unification was achieved by Garibaldi, Rich Tea and a packet of Chocolate Digestives. Well you live and learn.

3rd st Davis

2020 poops its last

D St phonebox 123120

This was the last sketch of 2020, outside Cloud Forest Cafe on D Street, Davis. And in the spirit of 2020, a bird pooped on the page while I was sketching, as if to say, you know what, this year is not done with you yet. At least I presume it was a bird. I was standing underneath a tree, and then plop a big black splat across the page. It was really dark black as well, which makes me think maybe it wasn’t a bird but one of those oily things that trees occasionally plop onto the sidewalk, there are trees here that do that, lots of sticky paths. But it was a direct hit, missing my clothing completely, and leaving thick muck across the page. I wiped it off but was also a little delighted. This will be something to talk about! I thought, happy to have a conversation starter. Also, if the sketch didn’t turn out to be all that, I’d have a ready-made get-out-of-hard-drawing card, plus the actual effect of the black poop (which splattered bluish grey poop artistically across the spread) would make it look really interesting. Unfortunately I did such a good job at cleaning it up (I didn’t want to leave too much of it on there, in case it was diseased, if it was from a crow and I got sick it would be ironic after avoiding covid to get ill from a corvid), that it looks like a brownish smudge now. Still, whether it was a crow or a tree that pooped onto the page, I welcomed it as the last hurrah of twenty-twenty. What a year! I don’t know about you, but I thought 2020 was a little bit shit.

And now it is 2021. I saw online that if Back to the Future was made now, Marty McFly would be travelling back to 1991. 1991! There would be loads of references to jokes about the ridiculous idea of Donald Trump being president some day, and Doc Brown would be asking if Bryan Adams was still number 1. There would be payphones and cassette players. When Marty walks into a 1990s cafe wearing his 2021 clothing, someone would say “hey what’s with the face mask?” And when Marty travelled 30 years into the future to the far-off year of 2051 there would be a news report about Tottenham winning the Premier League (as well as all the usual flying cars. Anyway the point I’m making is that we now live in the future and we used to live in the past when it was the present. Wait no the point is, what seemed like ancient prehistory to us in the 80s and 90s is as far away from us then as the 80s and 90s is to us now. And when you think about it, it’s really even further. Is 1991 closer to 1961 than 2021 is to 1991? I mean, it kind of is. The internet, mobile phones (and not the big brick ones carried by yuppies in 1991), plus lots of other things I’m too lazy to think of. (Tottenham won the FA Cup in both of those years too, so maybe 2021 is our year?) Let’s just say that sounds about right, 1961 and 1991 are closer to each other than 1991 and 2021. Or maybe not, I don’t care that much.

But will 2021 be that different from 2020? 2020 was definitely different to 2019 for example. I did approximately half the amount of drawing in the past twelve months as in the previous, but then 2019 was a bumper year for sketching and travelling. I went to London three times in 2019, but zero in 2020. Right now my calendar says it is 2021, but the president is still that same tiresome person for another few weeks, people are still getting sick and dying, businesses are still closing, we’re still working and schooling from home, the pandemic is still raging as bad as ever, though at least there are vaccines now. 2020, the real 2020, won’t actually stop until we are out of This Whole Thing, in the same way that the ‘real 2020’ didn’t start until mid-March, but then again we might not be back to any sort of normal for a long time yet, so we’ll just keep on keeping on. And Happy New Year, all the same. 

autumn in davis

B & Ovejas, Davis

Post #2 about all the autumnal colours that painted Davis streets in late November to early December. It was like a fall extravaganza. Above is the corner of B and Ovejas in north Davis, the streets over here were looking ridiculously autumnal, like you get in an American rom-com set in the suburbs. A lot of Davis looks a bit like that, I guess. I don’t really watch American suburban rom-coms. I’m not even sure what rom-com stands for, probably some futuristic tech from the 80s.

3rd and D, Davis

This was downtown, corner of 3rd and D, when the trees on 3rd turned red with rage. Things were still a bit open here, with Cafe Bernardos and other places having their outside seating for the COVID age, but I don;t know what it’s like since we went into a stricter purple tier, they told all the restaurants to be take-out only for the time being. At this time though there were a lot of people still about, enjoying the Fall colours, just before Thanskgiving. We had a Zoom Thanksgiving with family, played Scattergories. Same with Christmas, except for the Scattergories, we just opened presents.

International House, Davis

Above is International House, corner of Russell and College Park. It was a warm day when I sketched this, with the sun on the back of my head (kept my hood up). International House does lots of things for the international community here in Davis, including organizing the International Festival every year to promote cultural awareness and global appreciation. I’m well into that. It looked lovely on this day. The adjoining street College Park looked gorgeous too. This is one of the most stunning streets in Davis in my opinion (it’s more of a big ring than one street) with amazing houses, including the UCD Chancellor’s residence. I’d love to draw most of these houses, I do feel a bit self-conscious sitting outside one though, so have never sketched them. I did do the drawing below though, but this was mostly done at home. I did a very quick sketch outline from a spot in the road next to a pile of leaves, but then drew the rest from a photo with the fountain pen and the watercolours. Caught the feel of the street I think.

college park, davis

The one below I drew and painted standing right there, a street near my house right on the north Davis Green Belt. The houses here are nice too, if not quite as grand as College Park, still very pretty. I love living near the Green Belt, but in November it was more the orange red yellow and brown belt. This one didn’t take too long, just under an hour, a lunch break while working from home.

north davis 120320

And the one below was down on D Street, in Old North Davis in the block off of 5th, near downtown. The trees were mostly brownish orange, I didn’t draw or colour everything because I was getting a bit stiff from standing, the light was starting to go, I thought I might finish later but I never did, this was enough. This was pretty much the last of my autumn sketches for 2020, a little period of excited energy that has now faded away with the leaves. I’ve not sketched much in December at all, in the run up to Christmas, as the stay-at-home orders got tighter and the days got much shorter, and I just didn’t want to leave the house at lunchtime. Maybe I will today. I still have a bunch of different coloured autumn leaves I collected while cycling around town which I intended on drawing, like some sort of botanical artist (I am in awe of botanical artists and really should try more of that myself), but they might all be too crunchy and dry now. I took a lot of photos of colourful autumn Davis too, but it’s the sketches that make me really feel the season. Now it’s winter, which in Davis means, well not exactly American rom-com suburbia, which would be snow. No, for us it’s just colder than Fall, with fewer leaves on the trees so you can see the buildings clearly (great for sketching shadows!), with more bright skies than overcast ones, a bit of rain but not like back in England, just enough to close the soccer fields. I should like to do a book about Davis (ha, been saying that for ten years), but maybe one where I go through the months of Davis, and show what the town looks like in different seasons. “The Year in Davis”. I don’t know. I also want to do one just of panoramic drawings of Davis streets. I have ideas but then never finish them off, I just like to keep drawing. Better get back to it then.

D St Davis

sketching by the train tracks

H St & 2nd St Last week we braved the elements (it was a bit cooler than usual) and held a socially-distanced Let’s Draw Davis sketchcrawl. We started out at the Amtrak station and went down 2nd Street. It was kinda sorta a scavenger hunt, but my list wasn’t very good, putting two of the items/prompts twice, and I didn’t follow any of them. I only did two drawings, at pretty much the same place (just from opposite sides of the train track). In the second one (the panorama of the Amtrak station, below) I stood leaning against the wall and my fingers got chilly. It was only a few weeks ago we were hitting temperatures in the big 90s! I mean it’s not cold cold, but it was noticeably more autumnal. I drew the above sketch with a Lamy safari fountain pen in black ink, and below the uniball signo um-151 in brown-black ink (click on it to see it bigger on the Flickr site).

amtrak station panorama

though nothing, nothing will keep us together

G St 111120 On Veteran’s Day I went downtown to get a sketch done, and ended up on G Street, where I drew the outdoor seating areas outside Woodstock’s Pizza and the Davis Beer Shoppe. Much of downtown Davis is now an outdoor food court, with streets blocked off on certain evenings so restaurants can expand further outside. I’m glad there is life, I don’t want these places to go out of business. I still only get take-out though, which we do quite a bit, and while it would be nice to pop down for a beer, I still don’t like being too close to others. Cases are spiking, but I think Davis businesses are doing their best. I’ve noticed a few new outside toilets have been installed downtown too, nice permanent ones rather than dirty portapotties. I drew this in the watercolour Moleskine. Weather is turning cooler, we even had rain on Friday, with more to come.

Co-Op

Davis Co-Op 11-07-20 On the day the winner of the election was announced and made clear to anyone who understands elections I popped out to do some drawing and catch the last bit of sunlight on a pretty well sunlit day, before heading back with some beer and cheese to watch the speeches. The Davis Co-Op on G Street has been here for decades, they have a great selection of food and drinks, especially their beers and wines. I stood across the street and made sure I included the sculpture of the big orange carrot. Maybe the Co-Op made me think of the new administration-elect’s calls for co-operation. It also made me think of the incumbent wotsitsface who may or may not be attempting a Co-Up. Drawing calms me down from thinking about politics and the sheer 2020-ness of 2020. I don’t draw the Co-Op very often, for some reason I find it a tricky subject, maybe it’s all the trees in the way, maybe I need to stand or sit closer. Wow, is it mid-November already? The hardest thing I’ve found about this year is the impossibility of planning for anything. Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up, and thinking about the family gatherings with all the distancing is tough. And it’s nearly make-the-advent-calendar time of year! I’ve no idea what this year’s theme will be. Maybe a huge drawing of the house since we’ve spent so much time there this year, and we now officially own it. Off to the drawing board…

dominoes are fallin’

dominoes in north davis They are, aren’t they. I drew this one warm autumnal lunchtime last week during the Endless Agonizing Election (the Endless and Agonizing bit is still nowhere near over, the rest of 2020 is not going away with dignity is it). Even as I drew we were not yet close to an outcome but the dominoes were falling alright. Like Domino Rally, remember that game? I always wanted that as a kid, those adverts for it looked so brilliant, little plastic rectangles racing against each other falling over. I never had it, but I finally got one for my son for Christmas several years ago, I think we played it once on Christmas morning and was like, right that’s not as much fun as I thought it might be. It’s sat in the hall cupboard ever since, I think it will be heading to the Goodwill at some point, if future archaeologists can ever excavate our hall cupboard. This domino sculpture is actually on the North Davis Greenbelt, it was something that eluded me for years, I managed never to come across it. This year since I have been walking and running so much, exploring all the pathways on this side of town, I’ve gone past it many times and now finally gone to draw it. It was installed in 1994, the work of artist Eddy Martinez Hood, and it is called Domino Effect II. I assume there was a Domino Effect I, but if this is a sequel it’s a superb sequel. Like Street Fighter II, I don’t know the original at all. Or maybe Domino Effect I was done afterwards like a prequel? I don’t know, if only there were some form of global information  network where I could look this up, but as with lyrics that you can’t completely make sense of, the not-knowing is more fun. We live in an age when being able to know things is so immediate that I think maybe this is why so many have turned to the world of not-knowing, of alternative facts, of disbelieving the evidence in favour of the made-up, and let’s face it that’s why we are where we are. Wow that took a turn didn’t it.

I really enjoyed drawing this. It was a break from the endless red and blue TV maps and breaking news from Gondor and the fall colours were really exciting my senses. We have a lot of public art in Davis, it’s an artists town. (Speaking of which, we have a sketchcrawl this Saturday afternoon, 1:00pm starting at the Amtrak Station. Let’s Draw Davis!) I like how this sketch turned out, I was pleased with the colours and the dark values, and right now I feel like I am enjoying my sketching again. My number of sketches this year is way, way down on previous years, but I feel like I’m pushing myself out to draw a lot again, like I was when the pandemic first started.