Here is a sketch from last spring, of one of the oldest houses in the village. A fire destroyed most of it, and it was boarded up for several months. I thought about drawing or painting it for a long time.
"I never copy nature, although my things are representational. I always pick what I need out of nature and use it in the design. But that doesn't interfere with the fact that the representation can be quite plausible."
That really gets me thinking about what I am representing when I paint - what is outside and what is inside. Both seem so important, and if one is absent the painting falls flat. The filter of a brief sketch is helping me focus on both, on getting the essential information from both arenas. And, as winter approaches and the window of time in which I am willing to paint outside firmly closes, it is wonderful to be able to bundle up, grab my sketchbook, head outside, and keep learning to see.