Here is Eli’s Restaurant, located in the Dupont Circle neighborhood of Washington, DC. Eli’s is DC’s best kosher restaurant, where the food is meaty, the prices respectable, and the waitstaff friendly. Though the bottom floor of the building where the restaurant is located didn’t fit onto the page, my focus was the upper floors, which showcase the antique-style house architecture of Washington, DC – a beautiful style that clashes with the increasing number of sharp and gaudy glass and steel office buildings in the area. I did this sketch in about 45 minutes.
Here’s an individual I sketched on the Washington, DC Metro, at least until somebody boarded the train and blocked my view. I try not to get annoyed at people whom do this; they don’t know that I was drawing the person they stepped in front of, and I don’t want to be noticed sketching anybody in the first place. Such is the life of the urban sketcher on a busy commuter train; you’re engaged in many relationships, of which you are the only person whom knows about any of them.
Drawn in 2006, here’s an individual I spotted and just had to draw; horribly obese, motorized wheelchair, and oversized soft drink cup. No judgements passed, just one of those things that if you happen to spot on a day when you have itchy pen fingers and are looking to draw something, then this sight just pretty much launches itself onto a blank sketchbook page.
About seven years ago, we took a trip out west to California, visiting San Francisco and Yosemite National Park. Far removed from the practice of sketching at the time, I none the less toted along a small sketchbook, some pens, and a few colored pencils. Here are two sketches I did in Yosemite, which barely begin to capture the awe-inspiring visual grandeur and mind-blowing dimensions of the place.
I will be taking a break from posting this week while I stuff my face and over-fill my belly during the one-two celebratory punch that will be Thanksgiving and Chanuka. Though the two holidays don’t share anything in common – one being a major American holiday and the other a minor Israeli festival – the convergence of the Gregorian and Hebrew calendars last brought the two events together 153 years ago, and mathematically will not do so again for roughly 70,000 years, so I plan to take full advantage of this once in a lifetime event to feast on copious amounts of oil-fried turkey, cranberry sufganiot, and of course, some fine craft beers!
This building, located in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, DC, caught my eye as being both an excessively ugly eyesore and a wonderfully detailed opportunity for a challenging urban sketch. Over the five days it took me to sketch this, I faced many challenges; having the view blocked by delivery trucks (one dropped and broke a keg of beer right in front of me), overly-curious onlookers, intermittent rain, and a noticeably annoyed smoker sitting right in my sketching spot, whom I politely asked to move. Then again, this isn’t landscape painting in the middle of a peaceful meadow; urban sketching is done in the thick of the concrete jungle, and when that jungle is the wilds of the Nation’s Capital, then you better be ready to wield your sketchbook like a warrior!
I took these visual tasting notes during a wine tasting back in 2006, before I even knew about a discipline called sketchnoting. The tasting itself featured five vintages of Hagafen’s Napa Valley Merlot. While others took more “proper” notes on index cards, I broke out the pocket-sized sketchbook, a Pigma Micron pen, and used dabs of the different wines to add some color. And yes; there are some phenomenal kosher wines out there, hailing everywhere from California’s finest vineyards to the world-class growing regions of Israel.