Santa Barbara Day One

It’s been ages since I visited Santa Barbara, and I’ve forgotten what a beautiful city it is. White stucco buildings, clay roofs, lots of tall palms, and plenty of street life. So much to sketch! I’ll be teaching a couple of workshops here this week, and as I always do, I did a tour of my demo locations this morning so I can figure out what we’ll be sketching.

The weather was unexpectedly cold and overcast when I got up to the Old Mission Santa Barbara. And I couldn’t get the paper to dry in the mist! So much for the clear blue California sky and sharp shadows I was expecting. Hopefully it will be better when I get there with the group!

I also painted a view of the beach and the city from Stearns Wharf. The architectural shapes and contrasting lights and darks are so interesting from there, but it’s really those skinny wiggly palms that I love best.

And finally, two years later than planned, I got to meet artist Brenda Swenson who is just finishing her workshop with French Escapade as mine begins. We’ve been Facebook friends for ages, but what a treat to meet her in person!

18 Comments on “Santa Barbara Day One”

  1. Kelly says:

    You have to go see the giant oak tree on the beach while you are in Santa Barbara.


  2. diane harvey says:

    Lucky you! Santa Barbara – Queen of the Missions and one our loveliest towns! But what a treat to see my 2 favorite teachers together! Have a lovely week!


  3. Lisa OConnell says:

    Welcome to my hometown, Shari! Love your work. And yes, we’re supposed to have warmer, sunnier weather in the next couple of days. Today was a bit dreary! Enjoy your visit.

    Cheers, Lisa

    Get Outlook for iOS ________________________________


    • Lisa, it warmed up for us, finally!! What a beautiful place your hometown is! I’m enjoying sketching everything here, and of course everything is even more gorgeous when the sun is out!


  4. TonyU says:

    Love the two sketches and looking forward to hopefully seeing more … but the photo of you and Brenda finally getting to meet will take some beating!


  5. Judy says:

    Tried posting this earlier but don’t think it went thru. The two paintings are lovely. My cousin lives near there and says Santa Barbara is her favorite city. But what is really nice is meeting an old friend in person.


  6. Patricia Leffingwell says:

    In my opinion, Shari and Brenda are the most outstanding, top of the list, watercolor artist/ teachers of watercolor in their field. Both are Exquisitely beautiful painters of the medium and extremely knowledgeable and generous in sharing their expertise with others. The McCartney and Lennon of the watercolor world right there together. !!! Big fan of all 4 of you!!!! Love you, Yeah,Yeah, yeah!


  7. Love it! All of it! Except the weather. Hope all goes well!


  8. -N- says:

    You can expect cold and drizzle a lot of next week – but the sun will return. Looking forward to seeing you paint places with which I am so familiar! Watch out for poison oak if you go hiking. 😉 If you can, get up to the Botanical Gardens – it’s really a beautiful place to go. Beaches, too. Enjoy yourself!


  9. Excellent paintings of Santa Barbra, it was unfortunate that you got drab overcast weather, but your paintings still turned out good. I really like your painting of the Old Mission.


  10. I remember sketching there long ago. It has so many wonderful views. Both of these are great sketches. How fun that you were finally able to meet Brenda in person. I love following her work. Have a great week teaching there.


  11. And it was great to finally meet you this evening Shari. These sketches are beautiful! I am looking forward to this workshop, time to get the cobwebs out of my sketching after too long of not doing plein aire sketches. And hi to Brenda even though she will probably not see this, at least I am thinking of her.


  12. Northern Traveller says:

    Beautiful! Your paintings make me want to visit this corner of the world.


    • Thanks Mary. If you get a chance to go, Santa Barbara is really gorgeous. There’s a backdrop of mountains with all those beautiful houses up on the hills in Montecito, and the city itself is wonderful. Beautiful architecture, a beach, great food, lots to draw. And apparently a great garden called Lotusland which I did not get to see. Maybe next time!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s