Los Gatos, California has street after street of wonderfully preserved and restored homes. Here are a bunch of them, all on one block. These quick little sketches were made in a medium that’s unusual for me to use for urban sketches: charcoal, in stick and pencil form. Not the most practical thing to carry around, it tends to mark everything it touches, but so much fun to smudge and push around the paper. It’s sort of like having an ‘undo’ button: If you draw in a line to sharp, you can smudge it till you lose it.
This first set is very quickly sketched: each sketch no more than a few minutes.
And then I came upon this gorgeous Victorian home. Here’s a first 5-minute charcoal drawing of it.
And while the house is lovely, it’s the tree in the front yard that really captivated me. It just begged for more than a quick charcoal sketch. So out came my watercolors and fountain pen. Luckily for me, today (yes, in early February!) was a 75ish degree day. Sunny. Clear. Perfect sketching weather.