Gotta sketch that itch


Sooo. I have been teaching myself how to  draw over the past few months. I am a big believer in daily practice and decided that I would try to sketch something daily. Then I got the idea to post my daily sketch on a drawing blog. I created a whole new blog for this endeavor and you can view it (and subscribe!) here. The blog is called Gotta Sketch That Itch  I love the name of it because that is exactly what I am doing. For some inexplicable reason I have this weird desire to draw – it has always been there. It’s an itch that needs to be scratched. I’m not very good at it, and I think that is part of why it’s important that I do it. And also why it is important to share my drawings with the community. I am forcing myself to take my ego out of this process entirely which is a very hard thing to do. But such a good lesson to learn.

While I am doing this 100 days project I am going to post one of my drawings once a week – one that I like the most from the previous week.

This week’s post is from a black and white photo I took last year.  I am going through this fabulous book called, “Urban Watercolor Sketching” by Felix Scheinberger. One of the exercises is learning to paint shadows using India Ink.

This is a very rare instance in which I feel like my drawing came out kind of good, sorta! I had fun with it, anyway.

Here is the original photo:

One rainy afternoon

A Boring running update


It’s been  a very long time since I’ve posted a running update! And since I am needing blog fodder for this 100 days project, I thought it would be fun to geek out write about running here on this blog. Running has always been an important part of my life, but recently I’ve gotten even more serious about it. I’ve managed to overcome plantar fascitis (knocking on wood) and have been running very consistently, 3 days a week at least, for over a year now. I have no idea how I beat plantar fascitis, but I am very happy that I did (knocks harder on wood). I am now up to 6 miles on my longer running days! I am so proud of myself. For years and years I tried to get to that magic number of 5 miles and it always eluded me. It feels good to have surpassed that goal, and feel like I can work up to longer runs. In another post I will write about some of the things that have helped me.

A few weeks ago I ran my first race. I have “run” Bloomsday before but I don’t really feel like that counts.

the names are amusing: “Boring Marathon“, “Ultra Boring Ultra Marathon”, “Half Boring Half Marathon”, and the “Not Even Close To Boring 5k”. Rafael ran the Ultra Marathon (30k) and I ran the 5k – another fact I found amusing.

The swag for the run was awesome! We got a really nice tech shirt and a bunch of other stuff. And my number was 333!!

I have to say, this was only 5k but it was harder than I thought it would be! I went in feeling a little cocky – like I would be able to kick ass and name names no problem. But as soon as the gun went off competition mode set in. I ran the race faster than I normally run and I ended up getting really tired. A bunch of people passed me at the end of the race and it sucked. But I did it  and I was in 17th place overall – which isn’t good but it isn’t terrible either. It isn’t last.


Forest Girl


Forest Girl

Over the summer I accumulated a series of self portraits in the forest. I kind of like how they turned out so this will be the next series of photos on my photoblog. This particular one was taken at Zig Zag Falls on July 4th.


Geeky Bits:

Camera: Terrapin Bijou
Film: Portra 160
Exposure time: 1 minute

Throwback Thursday – 4 generations


As I mentioned, I am taking a Photoshop class and this week we learned about restoring old photos. It just so happened that my mom brought me a photo album that belonged to my grandmother that I, for some reason, had stored in my things at her house in Spokane. Many of the photos neither of us had seen before and this is one of them! And it’s such a great photo! Here we have me at around 7 years old, with my mom, great-grandmother in the middle, and grandmother on the right.

The original photo has a red cast to it and now I wonder why. Is it due to the fading of color in the print? It seems like a lot of old snapshots have a red cast to them. In the original photo below you will see that I have a gnarly gash on my chin. I was trying to remember how I hurt myself and then it hit me, this is when I took a serious spill on my bike. I wrote about it here.

4 generations before


Here is my “new and improved” Photoshopped version. I corrected the color, removed a ton of dust, and removed the scab on my chin.

4 generations after


I am kind of proud of the finished version, but in some way it makes me a little bit sad too. Like I’m rewriting history or something.

It’s interesting because I posted both of these on Flickr and I got more response on the original version. One person even said that the original’s red cast appealed to them. I kind of feel like the original, red cast, scabbed chin, and all, tells more of a story. What are your thoughts?

A very Instax Day


Last week I decided to dig my Instax out of the camera closet. I’d mentioned to my coworker that I had one and told her I would bring it to our after school outreach program  to impress the kids. The kids were not impressed. That made me sad. I remember, very fondly, the days when I would watch a Polaroid image reverse-fade into life.

Having dug it out of the closet and loaded up with film that is 3 years old, I decided to shoot the rest of the pack. My mom came to visit this past weekend. I took her and my stepdad to The Grotto in Portland. Here was our day.




grateful for the alignment tool in Lightroom.



Seriously. I am incapable of taking a straight picture.

This might be the first real outing I’ve had with this camera since I got it more than 3 years ago! I’ve had the film that long and it’s held up pretty good.