Los Angeles sketchbook

In December 2011 I spent two days sketching in Los Angeles. First, in San Juan Capistrano, sketching the mission.Here's one of the sketches:

Next I went to Pasadena. I lived in Altadena (just up the hill from Pasadena) for several years and there are many beautiful buildings in Pasadena that I wanted to revisit, but the first place I headed for was Vroman's bookstore. I spent a few hours there and a few more at Vroman's Fine Writing store, where I bought a Noodlers fountain pen and some nibs and ink converters for my Lamy fountain pens. At Vroman's bookstore I found a most beautiful book, the Pasadena Sketchbook, by Joseph Stoddard. Mr Stoddard invites you to follow his footsteps through Pasadena, with over 80 fresh, glowing watercolour sketches. He encourages you to 'carry your materials with you at all times', 'use these materials to express yourself. Don't try to paint a picture, just paint... even when you don't feel like it.. draw what you see every day.' His website is http://www.josephstoddard.com/ I spent the next day literally following in his footsteps, doing my own sketches of some of the places in his book. I had early morning coffee at Cal Tech (right) and by evening, I was in the park in front of Castle Green (below).

I was a little uneasy at first, as some of the other residents of the park had obviously spent the night there, but I decided not to let it bother me. I could easily have spent a week or two.