Along the Roadside in June

Last year I made several sketching forays out along the country road where I live. I’m curious to discover what’s in bloom and find that almost nothing is native to the Northeastern U.S. Still, I have to give these invaders credit. They have traveled across continents and persisted in harsh conditions, yet still offer beauty and color where few other species would survive.

Tips and Techniques– When I head out along the road, I typically bring only my sketchbook and a pen. There isn’t much traffic, but what comes along is moving fast, so I have to be ready to move quickly. I walk along until I find something in bloom, sketch it, and move on to find the next roadside flower, filling the page as I go. I make mental notes about color and sometimes snap a photo for reference as well. When I come home to paint, I’m not just coloring in spaces, I’m also thinking about the mood and feeling of the day. This walk was sunny and warm; hence the overlay of yellow to tie everything together.

25 Comments on “Along the Roadside in June

  1. As always, your pages are breathtaking and inspiring. I love your work – it’s truly uplifting. Not only your drawing skills but how you design a page plus your lettering make your sketchbook work outstanding. And of course the subject matter of nature which is close to my heart. Thank you for sharing.

      • I agree – your process is always inspiring to me! I love how you have chosen these particular elements..and designed it ‘a bit at a time’ (that really appeals to me!). inking first in the field and painting at home….I’m finding that a really convenient way to fit in more sketching time! And your lettering….oh so dreamy! This just makes me smile!!! Can’t get enough of it! 😀

      • Thanks Roxanne! Nice to hear from you and hope you are doing well and doing lots of painting. Composing a page a bit at a time makes the exploration and discovery a part of the page. It is not a still life, so it can go in whatever direction your path takes you.

    • Thanks Mair. I painted after walking and sketching, but found I had some gaps, so I went back out and added a bit more to fill the page. Near miss on poison ivy on the second go around!

    • Sometimes a light wash of yellow is all you need. It can really change a page. I used Nickel Azo Yellow here. I also like adding yellow ochre. It warms up a page without being “sunny”.

  2. Those are familiar old faces….like you said, they are tough! I like how the yellow does tie it all together, I’m impressed with the way you compose separate elements into a coherent whole, and the general joie de vivre I see in the painting is lovely. Cheers Jean!

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