Fair Warning!

I’ve been sketching at the Hopkinton State Fair longer than I’ve had this blog and it remains one of the highlights of my year. Sheep, goats, ducks, chickens, turkeys, rabbits, oxen were all drawn this year… even a dog… well, not a real dog… a CORN DOG!

Here’s this year’s total output!













No llamas, alpacas or swine this year. No cows either but I will remedy that at the 146th Tunbridge World’s Fair in two weeks… Thursday through Sunday, September 14, 15, 16 & 17.

I’m aiming for Friday… if you see me please stop and say hello!

Fair Game

It’s state fair season here in the US and I’m planning on making the most of it. If all goes as planned I will have pages to show from three different fairs

I’m comfortable with my supplies and set up so my biggest issue is my sketchbook. I thought I had plenty of room in my journal last Friday when I went to New Hampshire’s Hopkinton State Fair but in reality I could have used a few more. As it was, I finished 9 full spreads.


The pygmy goats at the petting zoo are perfect models for my warm-up pages.

I have a thing for Runner Ducks!

Such sweet faces.

As I was drawing this Australorp hen, the judge came up and told me that I “knew my chickens” as she hung up the Best in Show sign. Cool!

Toggenburgs,  they’re dairy goats!

Look at the length of those horns!

I learned that yes, Llamas spit, but mostly at each other!

No pages left… I guess it’s time to go!

I have another fair to attend next week but this time I’ll have my new sketchbook.  Lots of blank pages to fill!

Let’s Go To The Fair!

Hopkinton State Fair that is.

It’s the 100th anniversary of New Hampshire’s State Fair and you still have time to visit… It’s open through Labor Day… Monday, 7 September, 2015.

I arrived nice and early armed with my sketchbook and pen, watercolors and brush safely tucked in my left hip pocket. Come! …walk with me as I travel and sketch my way through the barns.

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The Avian Flu Virus has plagued the upper midwest causing the fairs like the Minnesota State Fair to cancel their poultry exhibit. We’re fortunate, so far New England has been spared, allowing the Hopkinton exhibit to continue this year.  Each year I’ve been able to sketch the fantastical variety of poultry breeds but this year was special.  I managed to paint my sketches as I stood before each bird… a major accomplishment in my art progress! No painting later at home this year.

150904-3150904-4Salmon Faverolles… Isn’t he gorgeous!

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I was on my way to sketch the dairy cows when I was hit by an incredible sneezing fit. Time to reconsider my next subjects.

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There’s shade and picnic tables alongside the duck pond and it’s my favorite place to regroup, relax and do one final page before packing up my supplies for the day.

In an hour I’m home… planning my next fair visit. I think it’ll be the Tunbridge World’s Fair in two weeks… stay tuned!

What Are You Waiting For? It’s State Fair Sketching Time!

I love Fairs!  Where else is there a multitude of creatures just hanging around begging to be included in my sketchbook.

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A couple of warm-ups and I’m ready to go!

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Sometimes there are so many to choose from… I decide to sketch as many as possible. (Check out that Lamancha goat! I was astounded to learn they’re born without external ear flaps… pinnae.)

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I even go one to pose for me after his turn in the show ring.

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Sometimes humans are interested in my work… the cows? Not so much! ( I thought Holsteins were only black and white. Not so! These red and white girls are Holsteins too! )

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There’s still time for you to take your sketchbook and get in on the fun. New Hampshire’s Hopkinton State Fair is open tomorrow and Monday. If you’ve missed your chance at your nearest fair I highly recommend you start planning for next year… I know I am!