architecture

Main Street Explorations

Boots Bakery is one of my favorite places in downtown Spokane. Not only do they have delicious food, but also beautiful murals inside and frequently host poetry slams and a bunch of other creative events. I can't wait for sunshine and warm weather so I can sit on the patio and watch people go by.

I love this shade of blue!

I love this shade of blue!

I painted this during Leadership Spokane's Art day. Thanks to Brooke Nicholson for inviting me. It was great to meet so many lovely people interested in doing exciting things in Spokane! If you'd like to invite me to come paint at your event, please email me at meganperkinsartstudio@gmail.com.

I painted this during Leadership Spokane's Art day. Thanks to Brooke Nicholson for inviting me. It was great to meet so many lovely people interested in doing exciting things in Spokane! If you'd like to invite me to come paint at your event, please email me at meganperkinsartstudio@gmail.com.

This wall of mirrors is inside of Boots. The way the light comes through the front windows is lovely and there is something about the repetition of a objects that makes a collection on the wall very compelling.

This wall of mirrors is inside of Boots. The way the light comes through the front windows is lovely and there is something about the repetition of a objects that makes a collection on the wall very compelling.

Boots is one of the restaurants inside the Longbotham Building. Zola is another one. There is so much going on at street level, I don't know how many people look up to admire the building's crown but with its signage, year, sculpture, crests, rusty bits, and a teal and lime green patina if they aren't, they are missing out! 

Boots is one of the restaurants inside the Longbotham Building. Zola is another one. There is so much going on at street level, I don't know how many people look up to admire the building's crown but with its signage, year, sculpture, crests, rusty bits, and a teal and lime green patina if they aren't, they are missing out! 

I think I need to do a bigger painting of this building-maybe something full scale from the crown to the sidewalk. Another one for the to-do list!

I think I need to do a bigger painting of this building-maybe something full scale from the crown to the sidewalk. Another one for the to-do list!

Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral

The white caps and crosses on the top of the towers of Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral peek above the buildings along the Spokane River when viewed from Kendall yards. Situated on Riverside Avenue in a block that holds the Philanthropy Center, the Spokane Club and the old Masonic Temple and just across the street from the Spokesman Review Building, the Cathedral is in good company. Open for short periods of time before and after Mass each day, you can duck in to admire the vaulted ceilings and art. If that doesn't work for your schedule, no worries, there is plenty of beauty to be found in the exterior.

I'd describe the brick that makes up the Cathedral as "salmon," though "pink" works just as well! I am constantly astounded by the range of colors in the brick buildings I find all over town. Brown, orange, burnt siena, umber, pink, salmon, cream, ochre and more!

I'd describe the brick that makes up the Cathedral as "salmon," though "pink" works just as well! I am constantly astounded by the range of colors in the brick buildings I find all over town. Brown, orange, burnt siena, umber, pink, salmon, cream, ochre and more!

The patina on the bronze cast doors was unreal, practically a rainbow! 

The patina on the bronze cast doors was unreal, practically a rainbow! 

This is my favorite of the bronze sculptures above the three entrance doors. I loved how the bronze had a purple cast to it and how that looked next to the salmon pink brick. 

This is my favorite of the bronze sculptures above the three entrance doors. I loved how the bronze had a purple cast to it and how that looked next to the salmon pink brick. 

If you've never made a trip down to Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral, it and the surrounding area are definitely worth a visit, then walk down to the Monroe Street Bridge and along the Centennial Trail to admire the falls!

Playing at the Paulsen Penthouse

The Paulsen Building is a historic seventeen story building on Riverside. It has a beautifully decorated exterior and the lobby (which is accessible to the public!) has a painted ceiling, ornamentation above every door, and a display of old elevator mechanics. The Paulsen Penthouse used to be owned by Helen Paulsen and her husband started living there in 1957, according to a Spokesman Review article. Helen lived there in the '80's, even after her husband died, but currently the space is used by Bozzi Media as an event space.

Being out on the deck at the Paulsen Penthouse. The view was fabulous, all of Spokane spread out below me, but being right up by the rail made me a little dizzy so I decided to focus on the beautifully adorned crown of the Paulsen Building.

Being out on the deck at the Paulsen Penthouse. The view was fabulous, all of Spokane spread out below me, but being right up by the rail made me a little dizzy so I decided to focus on the beautifully adorned crown of the Paulsen Building.

While I was up there, the sunshine began to be eclipsed by the grayer weather. I was still caught up in the details even though my fingers were going numb.

While I was up there, the sunshine began to be eclipsed by the grayer weather. I was still caught up in the details even though my fingers were going numb.

So I decided to go inside where this lady caught my eye for obvious reasons. She was a part of the frieze on the fireplace mantel.

So I decided to go inside where this lady caught my eye for obvious reasons. She was a part of the frieze on the fireplace mantel.

There were plenty of beautiful details to be found down in the lobby as well. This is a carved element on the stair newel post.

There were plenty of beautiful details to be found down in the lobby as well. This is a carved element on the stair newel post.

One pattern lozenge from the painted ceiling.

One pattern lozenge from the painted ceiling.

Engraving on a wall decoration I think.

Engraving on a wall decoration I think.

The lobby with it's painted ceiling and multiple friezes and carved ornaments are open to the public. If you're ever walking by on Riverside, you should definitely stop in!

Wandering Hillyard

Hillyard is a charming neighborhood with a gritty rail yard past. On Market Street you can see plenty of historic buildings as well as a multitude of murals. In this painting, my eye was caught by the combination of the bull's eye sign and the vintage minty-green building wall!

Initial Drawing.

Initial Drawing.

In progress.

In progress.

Finished!

Finished!

The shocking orange and red colors down a side street caught my eye as I was walking around the Hillyard Neighborhood. Then I saw the lovely hand lettering on the sign above the door and all the great peeling paint texture and I knew this had to be a painting! I have no idea if the Olympic Pack & Ship company are still in business, but it seems like this scene has a story to tell.

The shocking orange and red colors down a side street caught my eye as I was walking around the Hillyard Neighborhood. Then I saw the lovely hand lettering on the sign above the door and all the great peeling paint texture and I knew this had to be a painting! I have no idea if the Olympic Pack & Ship company are still in business, but it seems like this scene has a story to tell.

Initial drawing-only one person!  I'm really starting to lost the lamp posts here in Hillyard.

Initial drawing-only one person!

I'm really starting to lost the lamp posts here in Hillyard.

And now two!   I loved the green and yellow color scheme on this building. Beautiful! The rest of the scene is a series of subdued neutrals to set off the yellow and green. 

And now two! 

I loved the green and yellow color scheme on this building. Beautiful! The rest of the scene is a series of subdued neutrals to set off the yellow and green. 

Spokane Christmas Scenes

Happy Holidays everyone! This week on Artist's Eye on Spokane, I spent some time wandering around the city, taking in the holiday sights. What do you do for fun around the holidays? Do you have any favorite family traditions?

On these dark and wintery nights, holiday lights are a welcome addition. Frankly, I'd like it if they went up after Halloween and stayed till Valentine's Day! This is the Holiday Light show at the Gaiser Conservatory at Manito Park. Sadly, I think they might be done for the year, but get out and savor all the other lights that can be seen around town.

On these dark and wintery nights, holiday lights are a welcome addition. Frankly, I'd like it if they went up after Halloween and stayed till Valentine's Day! This is the Holiday Light show at the Gaiser Conservatory at Manito Park. Sadly, I think they might be done for the year, but get out and savor all the other lights that can be seen around town.

This epic Christmas tree was found in River Park Square Mall. It is SO TALL! Santa was busy with quite a line of children excited to see him and his cheer and kindness warmed my heart. I sketched this sitting next to the escalator in the entryway and for a while, my view was blocked by a high school band group waiting to perform Christmas music. It's a busy season!

This epic Christmas tree was found in River Park Square Mall. It is SO TALL! Santa was busy with quite a line of children excited to see him and his cheer and kindness warmed my heart. I sketched this sitting next to the escalator in the entryway and for a while, my view was blocked by a high school band group waiting to perform Christmas music. It's a busy season!

I also sketched the same tree last year, using a combination of watercolors, markers, and metallic Sharpies. It is always fun to revisit a subject and try to capture a different element of it. As you can see from my notes, I had musical accompaniment to my drawing this time as well, a choir instead of a band!

I also sketched the same tree last year, using a combination of watercolors, markers, and metallic Sharpies. It is always fun to revisit a subject and try to capture a different element of it. As you can see from my notes, I had musical accompaniment to my drawing this time as well, a choir instead of a band!

Wheatland Bank has been doing free carriage rides around downtown for the past couple of weeks. Festive and fun! I hitched a ride on the tailgate and enjoyed a horse paced tour of downtown while the kids in the wagon sang Jingle Bells. Have a lovely holiday weekend everyone!

Wheatland Bank has been doing free carriage rides around downtown for the past couple of weeks. Festive and fun! I hitched a ride on the tailgate and enjoyed a horse paced tour of downtown while the kids in the wagon sang Jingle Bells. Have a lovely holiday weekend everyone!

Sketching at the Fox Theater

The Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox has a storied history. Built during the Great Depression for a million dollars, it is a gem of Art Deco architecture and styling that was nearly lost to time through decline and neglect. It spent the latter half of the 20th century as a movie theater, all the gorgeous murals and amazing architectural details painted over in red paint. Plans were made to demolish it for a parking lot. Luckily, the Spokane Symphony needed a home and they were able to rally the community to save this amazing building. Today, the Fox hosts dance, live theater, modern music of all genres and more! I was so happy to be able to go to the Nutcracker this year due to the generous gift of tickets to the ballet from Spokane Symphony staff for my role in bringing KXLY to the Fox to film me sketching. I, of course, used this gift as an opportunity for more sketching! :)

Before the Nutcracker started, my friend Molly and I went over to the Brooklyn Deli for a little something to nibble. While we were waiting for our food to arrive, I sketched the Fox Theater Marque over the 1st Avenue entrance. There's nothing like beautiful, magical theater on a cold winter's night.

Before the Nutcracker started, my friend Molly and I went over to the Brooklyn Deli for a little something to nibble. While we were waiting for our food to arrive, I sketched the Fox Theater Marque over the 1st Avenue entrance. There's nothing like beautiful, magical theater on a cold winter's night.

I've been itching to sketch the starburst capped panels on either side of the stage since I first saw them at a Gonzaga Choir/Spokane Symphony performance years ago. I finally got my chance while I sat waiting for the Nutcracker to start. Thank you to Alison Highberger for making it possible for me to paint the Fox. Your support and enthusiasm is greatly appreciated!

I've been itching to sketch the starburst capped panels on either side of the stage since I first saw them at a Gonzaga Choir/Spokane Symphony performance years ago. I finally got my chance while I sat waiting for the Nutcracker to start. Thank you to Alison Highberger for making it possible for me to paint the Fox. Your support and enthusiasm is greatly appreciated!

The murals on the walls inside the Fox depict the transition from under the sea to land. Down here on the ground floor, we're under the sea, with silver, shimmering seaweed. Anthony Heinsbergen created and hand painted these gorgeous murals. I can hardly believe that at one point this dreamy landscape was covered under red paint. I'm so glad it got a chance to get out and shine!

The murals on the walls inside the Fox depict the transition from under the sea to land. Down here on the ground floor, we're under the sea, with silver, shimmering seaweed. Anthony Heinsbergen created and hand painted these gorgeous murals. I can hardly believe that at one point this dreamy landscape was covered under red paint. I'm so glad it got a chance to get out and shine!

The huge sunbeam in the theater atrium is glorious and awe inspiring. Tackling it was intimidating (Especially since I was being filmed for a clip on KXLY!) and it took four tries before I got the size of the sunbeam on the page correctly, but I'm happy with how this painting came out!   Thank you to Alison Highberger for making it possible for me to paint the Fox. Your support and enthusiasm is greatly appreciated! It never would have worked without you!

The huge sunbeam in the theater atrium is glorious and awe inspiring. Tackling it was intimidating (Especially since I was being filmed for a clip on KXLY!) and it took four tries before I got the size of the sunbeam on the page correctly, but I'm happy with how this painting came out! 

Thank you to Alison Highberger for making it possible for me to paint the Fox. Your support and enthusiasm is greatly appreciated! It never would have worked without you!

Holidays at the Davenport

The historic Davenport Hotel is a grand dame of downtown Spokane. Rescued from dereliction by Walt Worthy, it is a centerpiece of our city. Every year for the holidays, the Davenport host a fundraiser for the Spokane Symphony called Christmas Tree Elegance where decorated Christmas trees and delightful goodies fill the upper balconies and you can buy raffle tickets for the chance to win one. Gorgeous and festive as those trees all are, I still think my favorite tree is the big one in the center of the hotel atrium.

I did this sketch when I stopped in two years ago to take in all the holiday decorations. A live pianist was playing Christmas music as I sketched. It was pretty much perfect.

I did this sketch when I stopped in two years ago to take in all the holiday decorations. A live pianist was playing Christmas music as I sketched. It was pretty much perfect.

Capturing all the complicated paneling and beams was a challenge!

Capturing all the complicated paneling and beams was a challenge!

Who doesn't love a GIANT Christmas tree?

Who doesn't love a GIANT Christmas tree?

Here is this year's take on the giant Christmas tree. Rather than trying to sketch from ground level, I took to the second floor and found a little table to work at. I got an up close look at the giant lanterns as a bonus!

Here is this year's take on the giant Christmas tree. Rather than trying to sketch from ground level, I took to the second floor and found a little table to work at. I got an up close look at the giant lanterns as a bonus!

The Doge's Hall, an intricate gem of a room. is absolutely gorgeous and rather intimidating to draw. Can you believe that the whole thing was lifted out by a crane during the remodel and then returned?   While I was painting this, several people came to admire the room. One woman walked in and promptly laid down on the carpet to take a picture of the beautiful mural on the ceiling. My kind of person!

The Doge's Hall, an intricate gem of a room. is absolutely gorgeous and rather intimidating to draw. Can you believe that the whole thing was lifted out by a crane during the remodel and then returned? 

While I was painting this, several people came to admire the room. One woman walked in and promptly laid down on the carpet to take a picture of the beautiful mural on the ceiling. My kind of person!

The exterior of the Davenport is lovely as well. I had a lot of fun playing with all the different warm and cool tones!  Stop in and visit the Davenport this month while they still have the decorations up and make sure to grab one of the "Historic Walking Tour" brochures at the desk to learn about all the amazing architecture and history in the hotel.

The exterior of the Davenport is lovely as well. I had a lot of fun playing with all the different warm and cool tones!

Stop in and visit the Davenport this month while they still have the decorations up and make sure to grab one of the "Historic Walking Tour" brochures at the desk to learn about all the amazing architecture and history in the hotel.

August Sketch Grab Bag

This week is a bit of a grab bag. The process going to sketch the building below started a couple weeks ago when I came across a Spokesman Review article by Nick Deshais about how this historic building at S 119 Stevens is going to be demolished to make room for surface parking. I loved the sign and the intricate brick work across the top so I made the time to drop by. Sitting on the sidewalk on the opposite side of the street, I sketched and thought about the time and effort taken to do the decorative work on the building, the uniqueness of the sign and the way that things change.

S. 119 Stevens, soon to be a parking lot. I hope the sign gets preserved. If they were going to throw it out, I'd take it!

S. 119 Stevens, soon to be a parking lot. I hope the sign gets preserved. If they were going to throw it out, I'd take it!

This is the Museum of Art and Culture out in Browne's Addition. I've always loved the statue of the animals stacked on top of each other. I wonder what their story is?

This is the Museum of Art and Culture out in Browne's Addition. I've always loved the statue of the animals stacked on top of each other. I wonder what their story is?

The other bronze animal sculptures at the MAC definitely have a story according to Zachary Wnek of  Spokane Historical. 

The other bronze animal sculptures at the MAC definitely have a story according to Zachary Wnek of Spokane Historical. 

Weasel Sculpture
This is the Weasel, negotiating with the Two Leggeds. 

This is the Weasel, negotiating with the Two Leggeds. 

Here is the Salmon preparing the way to the River. I just thought they were chubby goldfish with a penchant for destruction of public property.

Here is the Salmon preparing the way to the River. I just thought they were chubby goldfish with a penchant for destruction of public property.

salmon finding way sculpture
And this Salmon has the money! Now I want to go back and find all the other figures that are part of the story! What fun! The maker of these sculptures is Tom Otterness if you'd like to check out the rest of his work.

And this Salmon has the money! Now I want to go back and find all the other figures that are part of the story! What fun! The maker of these sculptures is Tom Otterness if you'd like to check out the rest of his work.

St. John's Cathedral

For years and years I have driven past St. John's Cathedral. Sitting on Division on my way down to downtown Spokane, the tower is a distinct silhouette on the lower South Hill and every time I see it, I think, "Man, that looks so cool. I really do need to stop in there sometime" and then I don't. Last week that ended and I can't believe that it took me SIX YEARS to get up there to visit it. St. John's Cathedral is a beautiful refuge and a fascinating example of Gothic architecture. I hope seeing all these paintings will encourage you to go visit this grand landmark here in Spokane.

All my fun facts written below are from "A Guide to The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist" brochure that I found at the Cathedral.

The Tower is 167 ft and 9 inches tall.

The Tower is 167 ft and 9 inches tall.

St. John's Tower Pic
The ceiling beams in the nave are made of California Redwood. 

The ceiling beams in the nave are made of California Redwood. 

nave

I love all the flags hung along the nave!

    

 

 

The baptismal font is made of Tennessee and Italian marble and weighs 2,600 pounds!

The baptismal font is made of Tennessee and Italian marble and weighs 2,600 pounds!

The cathedral can fit around 1,000 people. 

The organ has 4,112 pipes.

The carillon (the bell set) was built and installed by the John Taylor Belfoundry of Loughborough, England. The largest bell is called Big John and weighs 5,000 pounds!

Spokane Youth Symphony practicing in the nave of the Cathedral. I stumbled  upon this by accident and it was fabulous to paint with live music accompaniment!

Spokane Youth Symphony practicing in the nave of the Cathedral. I stumbled  upon this by accident and it was fabulous to paint with live music accompaniment!

Oops! Ran out of paper trying to fit this MASSIVE door front all on the same page. The sketches made at St. John's are some of the largest I've done thus far for the Artist's Eye on Spokane Project.

Oops! Ran out of paper trying to fit this MASSIVE door front all on the same page. The sketches made at St. John's are some of the largest I've done thus far for the Artist's Eye on Spokane Project.

st.johnfrontdoor
The outside of the cathedral is made from stone quarried in Tacoma. The interior of the nave is sandstone from Idaho and the rest is Indiana limestone.

The outside of the cathedral is made from stone quarried in Tacoma. The interior of the nave is sandstone from Idaho and the rest is Indiana limestone.

Volunteer guides offer tours of the Cathedral most Fridays and Saturdays 11 am-2 pm and on Sundays following the 10:30 am service. 

Volunteer guides offer tours of the Cathedral most Fridays and Saturdays 11 am-2 pm and on Sundays following the 10:30 am service. 

I was walking around exploring the darkened corners of the cathedral and then I turned around and saw this view. Absolutely stunning! This is the biggest painting I've ever done on location 16" x 20" !

I was walking around exploring the darkened corners of the cathedral and then I turned around and saw this view. Absolutely stunning! This is the biggest painting I've ever done on location 16" x 20" !

As always, if you have any suggestions for where I should sketch, drop me a line at meganperkinsartstudio@gmail.com or just say hi! I'd love to hear from you. Also, if you know anyone who might like to get a weekly dose of art, feel free to share this with them. Help my project grow!