Category: Avast Matey

Captain’s quartersMendocino, CA

Mendocino water towers sketch by Chandler O'Leary

When it comes to water towers, Mendocino might just be the capital of the world. They serve a very specific purpose there: the town sits on a headland out over the Pacific, and the water table there is extremely low. So for the past 150 years or so, residents have had small wooden water towers… More

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FishlassSalmon Beach, Tacoma, WA

Salmon Beach mermaid sketch by Chandler O'Leary

You know, Salmon Beach is already a kind of mythical place, the kind of hidden world you read about in nautical legends. So it was completely fitting to follow the boardwalk path around a curve and suddenly find a siren* waiting on the rocks below. *sculpture by Marilyn Mahoney

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Fish talesKenora, ON, Canada

Husky the Muskie sketch by Chandler O'Leary

When I lived in Minnesota, people used to tell me hair-raising stories of going fishing “Up Nort’” for muskellunge, and catching specimens that measured in feet, rather than inches. It’s no surprise the muskie is the stuff of legends—but imagine my delight when, without even stepping foot in a boat, the Tailor and I “caught”… More

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Edward Scissor-finsVictoria, BC, Canada

Victoria topiary orcas sketch by Chandler O'Leary

The last post reminded me of another favorite whale effigy of mine: Victoria’s iconic topiary orcas. I only had a few minutes to spare for this sketch, because Don the talented gardener only needed that long to prune the thing. He finished before I did, and wandered over to to see what I was doing…. More

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Thar she blowsRoute 1, Portsmouth, NH

Yoken's whale sign sketch by Chandler O'Leary

If you ever have to ask for directions in New England, beware. Folks there have a tendency to reference landmarks that no longer exist (this quirk is bred into me, too—sorry to anyone I’ve ever confused). “Turn left where the pizza place used to be.” “Go just past where the old highway ran through before… More

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Sailor’s warningHeceta Head, OR

Heceta Head Lighthouse sketch by Chandler O'Leary

I have never yet managed to visit Heceta Head in anything other than a raging gale. (Thank goodness for the car overlook where I could park and sketch in comfort while the Pacific threw bathtubs of icy spray at my windows…) But then again—what better way to see firsthand exactly what lighthouses are for?

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Sailor’s delightLudington, MI

Lake Michigan lighthouse sketch by Chandler O'Leary

As a lifelong landlubber, I don’t often get to see lighthouses from the side they’re designed to face. So as you can probably imagine, not only was I gleefully waving back at the folks on the breakwater—I was also practically hanging off the side of the boat to get a better look at the beacon.

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Island beaconsCape Neddick, York, ME

Nubble Light sketch by Chandler O'Leary

You already know I’ll drive hours and hours out of my way for roadside attractions, but I’ve also been known to make some ridiculous detours and extra-long pit stops for lighthouses. As a result, I have a lot of sketchbook drawings similar to this one. I could probably keep this blog going for half a… More

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