Vista del Arroyo One

It was another hot one today, but under the oaks on the edge of the arroyo it was downright tolerable. Three of us set up our gear facing this sweeping view – the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is on the right, and the Colorado Street Bridge (Arroyo Seco Bridge) is to the left. The Courthouse has an interesting history, having been originally the site of a boarding house, then a grand hotel which was converted to a veteran’s hospital in the 40s before its present incarnation. It’s a wonderful piece of architecture, and I’d like to paint it again, closer up. Maybe on a cooler day.

In the distance you can see the San Gabriel Mountains. Now, you may not know them by name, but I’m guessing that if you ever watch the Rose Parade on TV, when the camera pans up to those craggy peaks towering over Pasadena, that’s what you see. Today, with incredibly high humidity from a Mexican monsoon (so we’re told) the air was thick with haze which cast the whole scene in a yellowish-pink light and turned the mountains to a bluish mauve. Kind of interesting, really.

This was a half page in my journal sketchbook. Tomorrow I’ll be posting another watercolor sketch, of the famous “Batman house” (Bruce Wayne manor) which burned last year. It’s now a roofless ruin and looks somewhat less than eerie in midsummer midday light. Still, it’s a bit of history and close by. See you tomorrow, same bat blog, same bat site.


  1. Dabs
    July 25, 2006

    Wonderful…. and how great you get out with friends to sketch and paint so often! I am hoping to find one or two artist friends up in Anchorage to do the same with!

  2. lin
    July 26, 2006

    BEAUTIFUL!!! And I too envy your trips with friends and time to sketch!! I love the coolness of this, Karen, even though it is obvious that it’s hot out!

  3. Jana Bouc
    July 26, 2006

    I really like this one–especially the contrast between the focused dark foliage and grasses in the foreground and the soft focus, light colored distant hills and sky. The composition is really interesting and the colors are beautiful.

  4. Potato Print
    July 26, 2006

    This is delicious. I love the layering of light and dark green. This is pleasing to the soul. Maybe someday you might publish a photo of the three of you painting outdoors. Thank you so much for your comments on my blog.

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