Brought my sketchbook along on camping trip

Brought my sketchbook along on camping trip

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
This summer, with all the beautiful weather we’ve had here in BC, we become campers! What a nice addition to our years of exploring BC by boat. Last year we got a small tent with sitting headroom only and decided it was just too small. This year we moved up to  a 4 man tent with standing headroom, much more comfortable.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Here’s our whole camping set up with our car and tent, a lovely canopy over our dining area and my brother Mark’s vintage Shasta trailer seen behind.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien

Rowan used to vend at the Bellingham Market and used this tent as her booth. It makes it wonderful addition to the camping set up and pops up in a hurry.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
What camping trip would be complete without potato chips!

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Evening snacks on the first night…..

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
The cooking set up. We shared the cooking and took our turn making dinner the first night.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Nice fresh BC corn ready to boil on the Coleman stove.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Cocktail time! One of Mark’s specialties.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Because BC has had such a dry summer no real campfires are allowed but these propane campfires that can be turned off on with the switch and create no sparks are allowed. So we were able to make our lovely Smore’s, melted marshmallow with chocolate between two graham crackers…… melty……

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Mmmm, smore’s, mmmmm ……

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Here’s the propane campfire seen by daylight, quite the handy little item. Especially in these dry summers with high fire risk.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Mark camps in style with matchy matchy red chairs, so cute and also comfortable.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Vintage Shasta trailer wings.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
The Shasta trailer with lovely Luna lounging behind.

fine art photography by Paula O'Brien
Lovely Luna, what a stylish dog.

plein air painting, watercolor painting, urban sketching
Last summer we came to the same Golden Ears Park in Maple Ridge, BC with the same gang. Here’s my watercolor sketchbook from last summer showing Mark’s trailer, Luna and Frankie, a little Pug that was along on the trip too. Very loose in China marker with a bit of watercolor wash.

plein air painting, watercolor painting, urban sketching
My sketch from this year of our campsite. I climbed up the hill into the forest and looked down on our campsite. To my surprise, I found I had brought along a sketchbook no more empty pages at the back so I had to find this empty corner of a page which happened to be the corner of the page above so it’s so nice to have last year’s camping trip and this year’s camping trip on the same page. As I had less than a half of the page I made my sketch much tighter and smaller with indelible marker and watercolor. Here’s Mark in his blue checked shirt captured a few times as he fussed around the campsite.

plein air painting, watercolor painting, urban sketching
On our last afternoon I set up with my larger sketchbook and tried to capture the scene in front of me with my full watercolor set beside me instead of perching on a bump on the hill like the evening before. This was much more comfortable and my subjects sat and chatted long enough for me to capture them.

plein air painting, watercolor painting, urban sketching

Here we have Dennis and Rowan and the propane campfire done in China marker in watercolor in my large watercolor sketchbook. Camping was lots of fun this summer and it’s great to take a sketchbook along. We’re already looking forward to next year’s trip!


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