The Beach Visit That Almost Didn't Happen

8:56 AM

Maderia Beach Visit with Terry and Jim
Watercolor, Ink and Gouache
5.5 x 8.5 inches in Stillman & Birn Zeta Sketchbook
Despite a cold front, rainy, gray skies, horrible (and I do mean horrible) traffic, a truck hitting a power pole and knocking over a live wire across the road, I finally managed to meet up with Terry and Jim for a visit at Maderia Beach. 

I almost didn't. After getting stuck by the downed power line just blocks from where I needed to be, I nearly gave up. Instead, I parked illegally at a church and hiked down the beach to meet up with my friends. It took over two hours for us to connect!

By the way, I have to tell you it is NEVER a good idea to park illegally in a beach town…they will ticket and tow you! They're very aggressive about that kind of thing and it's because they have to be. Thank goodness, it didn't happen to my jeep! 

Back to the visit...Terry and Jim come down to enjoy the warm weather and sea breezes will the great white North shivers under piles of snow and freezing temperatures. We started meeting up three years ago after Terry and I met in one of the classes. 

Last year, we sketched on location and had plans to do so again this year. Last year's post is here. Since it was spitting rain, we sketched from our table inside the restaurant that just happened to be out on a deck by the boardwalk and covered by clear plastic shades. Great planning on Terry and Jim's part!
My view from the restaurant.
You can see the reflections caused by the plastic
as well as the edge and grommets of the shade
The waves were rolling in a little stronger than usual as the front moved in and the glowering sky turned the water more gray than green.  The weather folks had predicted a much rainier day, but luckily, it held off. The next day, however, was a totally different story—it monsoon-ed!
Maderia Beach, Florida
The sketch at the top of the post is collaged page of several different views. The birds were actually to my left and behind me. Just as I started sketching the neck of the egret, he turned and presented my with a gorgeous view of his mating plumage leaving me to guess at his body shape. 

He looks like a bird so I'm calling it good enough!

The seagull was not a peg leg even though I only drew one leg. They often stand and sleep on just one leg. 

Sculley's was the restaurant where we ate so I added there sign afterwards as I could not see it from where we sat and no, the lighthouse was not that crooked. I was vertically challenged that day! 

All in all, despite the rain, lousy traffic and the downed power line, it was a great visit! 

Thanks, Terry and Jim—I look forward to next year! Safe travels home.  

Out of curiosity, would you come to Florida for a workshop on the beach? I'm thinking of putting something together for next year…if you're interested, let me know if the comments below!

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14 Creative Thought(s)

  1. Love your sketch Laure. Lighthouses are always fun to draw. What good luck the birds landed there when you were drawing.

    1. Thanks, Lynne! It's hard to miss all the birds in this particular area. There were also pelicans, but I'll save them for another day.

  2. Are you kidding? Yes I would come to FL for a sketching class on the beach. Love these sketches. I'm headed to FL this Friday, just to Sea Grove in the Pan Handle, but I sooooo can't wait to get there. These sketches and ocean photo really excite and inspire me. I am taking my sketch book. Looking forward to sketching something other than brown trees, brown grass and snow. And I can't wait to get some real seafood.

    1. Yay you! Enjoy the visit. I look forward to seeing what you sketch.

  3. I did comment but it must have went, gone, kidnapped, or took off for parts came in my email and on this site where we get on the class site...this post is beaudacious ! (spell check does not seem to know this word.)

    1. Thank you, Winna! The comments have been goofy lately.

  4. Great post Laure. I love the colours you chose and the overlap of images. I'll have to try that ... As for sketching on a Florida beach ... absolutely count me in, especially if its in February or so... After a long, cold winter that does not seem to want to end, can I go tomorrow? :)

    1. Come on, Diane! The water's great and the weather is fabulous!

  5. Yes, of course I would come to Florida! Love your sketch.

  6. I would love to come but my husband is still adamantly against me going on any artistic tic (or otherwise) jaunts away from home.
    I like your lighthouse. It's only a bit more wonky than the photo where I can see it leaning still. The vinyl window must have warped it for painting.

    1. We're gonna have to sneak you out of the house! As to the sketch, I was vertically challenged that day. It happens on occasion. I just go with it as there's no use in sweating it.

  7. Oh Laure - it sounds like you really overcame the challenges of the day. Good for you. So glad in the end you connected with your friends. It looks like you captured the important things of the day...which makes this page really delightful. Have a super week-end.

  8. Hi Laure, it would be fun to have a sketching trip to Florida. Let me know when so I can plan. Yippee!


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