Category: Hometown Tourist

Purple hazeSan Juan Island, WA

Pelindaba Lavender Farm sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Here in the Northwest, we’re in the thick of my favorite season right now. I don’t mean summer, per se, but lavender season. Our climate is pretty much perfectly suited to growing lavender, so other than maybe the south of France, there’s no better place to stand on a purple hillside, awash in scent.

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Portal to the PacificSeattle, WA

Seattle tunnel sketch by Chandler O'Leary

This weekend marks my eighth anniversary of living—and sketching—in Washington. I’ve covered a lot of ground in that time, but I still feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface of all I want to see, do, and draw here. All I can do is roll up my sleeves, put that pen in my hand, and… More

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Big winnerSeattle, WA

Seattle giant trophy sketch by Chandler O'Leary

The Summer Olympics are starting this weekend, though I must confess I’m more of a winter sports gal. So I’m not sure how much attention I’ll end up paying to the spectacle—still, if anyone is looking for a trophy to hand out, I think I know where there’s a really big one…

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Prehistoric pit stopVantage, WA

Gingko Gem Shop dinosaurs sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Remember when I posted that sketch of the Ginkgo sign in central Washington a couple of years ago? Well, I was so excited about the typography on that sign that I neglected to talk about what the sign advertised: the Ginkgo Gem Shop. On our way to Spokane that year, Mary-Alice and I stopped in… More

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Fish out of waterSeattle, WA

Fish sign sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Speaking of pescetarian signage, nothing beats this little beauty, tucked away in the back end of the Pike Place Market. The Market is chock full of fabulous and fishy neon, which I’ve sketched multiple times, but I just keep coming back to this one, hanging out by itself and telling you all you really need… More

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Neon butterflyCentralia, WA

Highway 99 butterfly sign sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Speaking of the Chinese new year, I’m reminded of this beauty along old Highway 99. The restaurant is still very much alive, and its current owners are doing a great job of stewardship when it comes to their vintage neon. So this week I’m wishing them a happy and prosperous new year, too.

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Through the rear-view mirror

Sketch map by Chandler O'Leary

Since the year is about to end, I figured it was the perfect time to look back and see how far I’ve come this year. I did all my traveling in the first two-thirds of the year (the last third saw me stuck in the studio and chained to big projects and their deadlines, hence… More

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Like peas n’ carrotsWinter vegetables from Olympia and Puyallup Valley, WA

Food storage sketch by Chandler O'Leary

The air has gone from crisp to cold. The leaves are thinning on the trees. And apparently half the vegetables in Washington are currently in our root cellar. I think that means it’s November. We’ve already dipped into the pumpkins for tomorrow’s festivities—and if you find yourself in the States at the moment, here’s wishing… More

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