Monday, October 12, 2009

Model´s face

Another week – another life drawing session. With rather poor results this time. The only thing I was remotely happy with was this – a fast sketch of the model´s face. Or half of it.

This is THE LAST of five double posts, posted both here and on my new website/blog, Please update your links and bookmarks and come on over - there will be no new posts here from now on!

16 x 15 cm, pencil on cartridge paper.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Life drawing

I went to an open life drawing session yesterday with a friend. I felt a bit rusty, but it was ok after a few warm-up drawings. I like fast poses, it makes me relax in some strange way when I don´t even have a chance to get too caught up in details. All of these were three to four minute poses, except the one on the far left, which was probably around eight minutes.

This is no. 4 of five double posts, posted both here and on my new website/blog, Please update your links and bookmarks and come on over! After these five double posts there will be no more new posts here.

Each drawing is about 20-30 cm high, drawn in pencil on copier paper. Collage made in Photoshop.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Aspudden public bath - part II

I wrote about Aspudden public bath here in Stockholm in an earlier post. In short, the local politicians want to tear it down, most of the people in Aspudden don´t.

A little update on the latest development: Since the 28th of September the bath has been occupied by people living in Aspudden, to guard the building from destruction. The pool is empty - a sad sight - but the bath is very much alive anyway. All kinds of folks from the neighborhood - adults, teenagers, children, parents, elderly - are there all day round. The door is open, the coffee is hot, and people come visit to show their support.

We´ll see what happens, so far the politicians have been very quiet.

This is no. 3 of five double posts, posted both here and on my new website/blog, Please update your links and bookmarks and come on over! After these five double posts there will be no more new posts here.

16 x 19 cm, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s Lexington Grey ink and watercolours on Fabriano Rosapina 220 g printing paper.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

People in airports

It´s been quiet here for a while, I had to make an unplanned journey to my old hometown Umeå. Unfortunately I didn´t have much time for drawing up there, but waiting for flights at Arlanda and Umeå airports gave me some excellent opportunities to take the sketchbook out of the bag and get some People Practice. I need it badly...

This is no. 2 of five double posts, posted both here and on my new website/blog, Please update your links and bookmarks and come on over! After these five double posts there will be no more new posts here.

13 x 18 cm, Lamy Safari pens with Noodler´s Lexington Grey, Fox Red and Hunter´s Green ink on no-name sketchbook paper.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Fresh flowers

I got a bunch of flowers from a very good friend this weekend. They have been standing in a vase on my kitchen table now for two days, mocking me with their impossible shapes. I couldn´t help giving them a try, even though I think flowers (and cars) are the most difficult subjects to draw.

This is no. 1 of five double posts, posted both here and on my new website/blog, Please update your links and bookmarks and come on over!

12,5 x 17 cm, Lamy Safaris with Noodler´s Lexington Gray and Fox Red ink, pencil and watercolours, on obscure brand of drawing paper in a sketchbook.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

What´s with the silence?

I´m moving house, that´s what the silence on this blog is about! I have been reading, coding, humming and trying to understand Wordpress and all it´s amazing abilities and strange ways, and I think I have finally landed in something that I quite like.

The door is open, please come on over to my new online place! :)

I will be posting on both blogs a few posts ahead, but please, dear Friends and Readers, update links and bookmarks and come on over. I don´t want to loose you on the way between Blogger and Wordpress!

11,5 x 16 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on crappy sketchbook paper, and Photoshop for a digital touch.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Aspuddsbadet (Aspudden public bath)

This place is within a stone´s throw of my home, and I went to draw it yesterday with sorrow in my heart. The old public bath in Aspudden in Stockholm will be torn down to give room for a new kindergarten. The City made the decision a few days ago, and many people (including myself) are incredibly upset about this. Built 1919, this bath is a pearl, a unique piece of history, offering bathing experiences that you don´t find anywhere else. Or how about a swim and a movie (shown on the wall above the pool), or an all ladies night with candles lit around the edge of the water? And, of course, since the pool is rather small and not so deep, this place is a favorite for families with young kids living in the area.

I don´t know if the last word is said yet about the demolition, the local organisation that runs the bath and the people who use it and love it have been fighting for this place for a long time, and the discussions are lively right now. We´ll see what happens...

Till Stockholmare och andra hugade som vill påverka: gå gärna in på Madeleine Sjöstedts (fp) blogg och tala om vad ni tycker om beslutet:
Kommentera rivningsbeslutet

(The above is a chance for people in Stockholm to comment on the political decision on a Swedish politician´s blog.)

26,5 x 19,5 cm, pencil, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s Lexington grey ink and watercolours on Moleskine Watercolor Folio page.

Monday, August 24, 2009


I finally got around to drawing this place - Hötorgscity in Stockholm, with the five skyscrapers and the fountain. This is the heart of the city, the shopping streets are centered around these blocks, and the Central Station is not far away.

If you are looking for city pulse, street performers, fashion shops and excitement, this is the place to be. For cozy cafés and warm atmosphere I would probably go somewhere else.

28 x 20 cm, pencil, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on Moleskine Watercolor Folio page.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

2 in 1

The last of the paintings I did during my vacation, a little experiment with two images. I am not sure it is finished yet, I have to put it aside and look at it again in a while, then I´ll know.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on 300 gsm (140 lb) watercolour paper.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The shed

One more of the paintings I did on the island up north, the shed between our house and the neighbor´s. The grid pattern was painted using some kind of grating I found in the shed, don´t know what it´s been used for, I just thought it made a cool pattern. The surface was first printed with some old piece of wood, as I´ve shown in an earlier post, hence the uneven background behind the pattern.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on 300 gsm (140 lb) watercolour paper (Arches or Saunders Waterford, can´t remember which...)

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Farewell Lövholmsbrinken

This area in Stockholm will soon be torn down to give room for apartment buildings - something Stockholm is always short of. The area where I sit to draw this is a little harbour for private boats, a rough forgotten spot that I suspect will soon be exploited too.

28 x 17 cm, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s Lexington grey ink and watercolours in a Moleskine Watercolor Folio Sketchbook.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

House 40

Our place on the island where I spend parts of my summers.

33 x 33 cm, pencil and watercolours on 300 gsm (140 lb) Arches watercolour paper.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Mind the cable

I went out to the cliffs on the northern tip of the island the other day, to paint this funny old cable tower. There´s an electricity cable going from this place to the next island, and on the tower there´s a sign saying "Mind the cable" to prevent boat owners from anchoring there. The tower has been worn and torn by sunshine and storms, and it´s decay is slightly worse every year, but it is still such a beautiful landmark.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on Saunders Waterford watercolour paper.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The stable - step by step

This is a long post, be prepared! Someone asked for a step-by-step of a painting, and that sounded like fun, so here goes:

This is another painting of the stable in my last post, but from a slightly different angle. In this one I used some experimental techniques where I both print and paint the watercolours onto the paper. I like the unpredictable results of this, plus it takes away the fear of making mistakes on the expensive paper. The printing part is a bit uncontrollable so mistakes WILL occur, but they will probably not matter much in the end. Sort of a relaxing thought.

The first two pics show my setup and painting gear. This is NOT what I bring for sketching in my sketchbooks, since it is rather bulky stuff. I use this for paintings only.

I start out with a light pencil drawing of the building, just so I know where it goes in the painting. (Sometimes I start by "ruining" the paper with some printing, and THEN decide where the main motive will go.) I draw this either on location or from my own photos. I live very close to this place, so it´s easy to bring the paint board to draw on location.

This time I start with painting the sky, choosing a rather saturated blue - it will look much lighter when it´s dry, so I´m not too worried about using too much colour.

Then the fun begins: I choose a piece of wood (or masonite, or corrugated cardboard, or whatever I find lying around) and paint LOTS of wet colour onto it, then quickly turn it upside down and press it onto the paper. I lift it up, and if it looks good I go on to the next print, otherwise I might add more paint to this piece of wood, move it slightly sideways and print again.

When I´ve done two prints with two different wood pieces, I add some uneven strokes to the top of the print - giving a sense of grass or bushes.

When the first prints are dry, I find this very uneven piece of wood, which will probably give some interesting textures, so I print that on top of the other print, with a slightly darker colour. I also add a very light warm wash to the wall of the building.

I go on printing in layers, letting every layer dry before adding the next. If too much paint ends up in a puddle, I turn the paper to a standing position and hit the table with it to make the paint run off the paper downwards (or sideways). Makes the puddles go away, and leaves nice running marks, which I like a lot. I start building up some shadow under the edge of the roof.

Then it´s time to start painting the trees too, using both a sponge and a paintbrush. I don´t want to leave any surface of the paper blank until the end, I kind of want to be working on the whole surface the whole time. I think it´s easier to find balance in contrasts and colours working that way.

I start adding some details to the building, using paintbrushes. I deepen the shadow under the roof a little too. I like this contrast between splashy experimental style and detailed controlled painting.

Then I go on with more details on the house, adding the mirroring in the window panes and some details on the blue doors. I keep on working on the grass too, both printing and painting with an uneven paintbrush.

In the end I add some darker greens to the trees, and some shadow under them.

Pretty much finished. Here without the tape around the edges. You can see it leaked through a little on the left edge. No big deal, I think.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on Saunders Waterford watercolour paper.

Monday, July 13, 2009


A little more experimental this time. This is part of the old stable by the Guesthouse in the last post. No horses on the island these days, they have a few hotel rooms and some other functions in this building now.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on Saunders Waterford watercolour paper.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The guesthouse

The rain took a break day before yesterday, so I went out painting. I had to rush it a bit, since the wind was a bit too cold for my liking, but if felt good to get some work done.

The building is a guesthouse/restaurant nearby our summer house, it used to be the headquarters of the saw mill on the island during the first half of the 20th century.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on Saunders Waterford watercolour paper.

Thursday, July 02, 2009


A few days ago I took the bike out to an industrial area not far from where we live, and sat down in the shadow behind a parked trailer to paint this old building. For once I had real painting gear with me, and a sheet of proper watercolour paper.

I find so much inspiration in this place, the old buildings, the dirt around them, big vehicles and strange constructions for industrial use... It never ends. And when a painting is done, you bike one block away and find the next fantastic sight to paint.

20 x 20 cm, pencil and watercolours on Saunders Waterford watercolour paper.

Saturday, June 27, 2009


This is where we spent our two days in Värmland - in a small red cottage with white corners, the archetype of Swedishness. The weather was fantastic, Swedish summer at it´s best, and the only thing that disturbed the idyll was the fact that I can´t spend more than 24 hours in a place like this before my allergy goes berserk.

18 x 15 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on Fabriano Artistico hot press watercolour paper.

On the road

We took a two-day trip to Värmland, in Western Sweden, towards the border of Norway, where my in-laws live. The road there isn´t too interesting if you have seen it a few times, but here and there it curves so nicely through the hills and the forests, like a soft ribbon, and I just had to try to capture it on paper.

13 x 10 cm, Pitt artist brush pens on Fabriano Artistico hot press watercolour paper.

Friday, June 19, 2009


Midsummer Eve in Sweden. Everybody hopes to achieve total happiness and 100 % sunshine on this day, but I actually had a few drops of rain when I went out to draw just nearby where I live. The happiness level is ok, though. :)

12,5 x 17 cm, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s Lexington gray ink and watercolours on sketchbook page.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Volvo Ocean Race

The boats from Volvo Ocean Race landed in Stockholm today, and the city has blocked of a whole quai (Skeppsbron) for the occasion, causing a few traffic jams here and there.
I love sailing, and even though I don´t like this kind of event very much (you know, a big stage with performing celebrities, a few stands selling beer and simple food, an inner sealed off area for the sailors and business people to mingle in, and loads of ordinary people watching the whole thing) I had to go see these boats in real life. My, our livingroom is narrower than these floating giants!

13 x 17 cm, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s Lexington gray ink and watercolours on sketchbook page.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


Went drawing with a friend (actually, I draw and she takes photos) day before yesterday, and we both wanted to take a closer look at this church, Botkyrka kyrka, on the edge of the Southern suburbs of Stockholm. The largest part of this old building is from the 12th century, which is kind of overwhelming when you start to think of it. Just imagine all the people who visited this place through almost ninehundred years...

15 x 18, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on sketchbook page.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Flowers from my dearies

My third year-students finished school two days ago. They are a bunch of lovely young people, with intelligence and hearts enough to change at least a part of the world for the better, and I wish them all the luck from now on. Actually, I´m not too worried about them, I know they will do well. But I know Monday will be an empty day at work, now that they are gone...

Anyway, I thought I´d draw some of the flowers in the beautiful bouquet they gave me, just to keep that memory in my sketchbook...

12 x 17 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and Kremer watercolours on sketchbook page.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy strings

This is not a deformed guitar, it´s a (deformed) ukulele, the craziest instrument on the planet. Bring one of these to any situation with people in it, and everybody starts smiling. No one can stay sour in the same room as a ukulele, and you can be sure they will want to try to play.

Ukuleles are totally un-threatening, gentle, fun, a little goofy - and STILL completely possible to play serious music on. It´s small, fits into almost any bag. Weighs nothing. Costs almost nothing. Easy to learn a few chords on to get started. In short - the perfect companion. Every human being should own one, it would make the world a softer place. :)

14 x 11 cm, pencil, Copic markers and black ink pen on bleedproof marker paper.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

More drawing time, please

Nope, I didn´t disappear. Work just got a little hectic, so I let the blog rest for a while. Soon time for a long vacation, though, so I don´t worry too much about it.

I´ve been playing around with these impossible but funny Copic markers for a bit. You know how markers are always impossible because they bleed through the paper? Well, get the right kind of paper and you´ll have good fun with them! I bought a pad of really smooth and bleedproof marker paper, and now I am learning some tricks with these fantastic pens.

For example: don´t draw black lines and then try to colour them in (as I almost always do with other techniques) - the markers will solve the black ink and everything will be a mess. Black lines go on as a last detail.
And: even if you don´t draw over the black pen, you can still make a mess - as in this drawing of a Swedish table classic (Bregott butter). I can´t really control these fellas, and I kind of like it. They keep surprising me. :)

15 x 11 cm, pencil, Copic markers and black pen on bleedproof marker paper.

Friday, May 01, 2009

First of May

Two posts on the same day! Not a usual habit of mine, but I thought I´d post this fresh on the right day.

It´s the first of May today, and in Stockholm the International Worker´s day is celebrated with several street demonstrations organized by the political parties to the left. I took a bike ride through town, passing by three different demonstrations. It must be a logistic nightmare for the people who draw the maps for these marches - they all take place simultaneously, and they all want to be close to the city center. The whole town is like a huge street festival with orchestras, drums, red flags, demonstration signs and people shouting, singing, marching.

I sat on a little doorstep on Kungsgatan drawing this while the Social Democratic party marched by.

13 x 17 cm, Lamy Safari with Lexington gray ink and watercolours on sketchbook page.

Café window view

The view out the window in the same café as in the last post.

10 x 15,5 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on sketchbook page.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thank you thank you thank you

Thank you all so much for your comments on my three exhibited paintings, they are all very much appreciated! There is no way I will have time to answer each and every one of your comments, since they are so many, but please know that I have read them all and I am very grateful for your encouragement. Thank you.

The drawing is from Wayne´s coffee in my hometown Umeå in northern Sweden. I spent the Easter holidays there, and had a really good time visiting family and friends.

13 x 15,5 cm, Copic Multiliner SP and watercolours on sketchbook page.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Exhibition piece no.3

The third and last of the paintings in the exhibition at Edsviks konsthall.

20 x 20 cm, watercolours on Arches 300 g watercolour paper.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Exhibition piece no.2

This is the second painting from the exhibition (see the previous post). All the images are inspired by the island in Northern Sweden where I spend much of my summers, though they are not exact depictions of the place. I figured that if I choose a subject that I know well, I can concentrate on the watercolours and experiment around this theme.

20 x 20 cm, watercolours on Arches 300 g watercolour paper.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Exhibition piece no.1

I wrote in an old post some time ago that I had made some small paintings that I didn´t want to show just yet, since I had some plans for them. I thought I´d tell you now that what I did was to send three of them into a juried watercolour exhibition, and they were all accepted! So now they are all up at the National Watercolour Salon at Edsviks Konsthall, just north of Stockholm. (I would put a link here, but their site seems to be down today for some reason.)

This is my first serious try to exhibit any of my work, so I´m thrilled that it all worked out. I´ll post the other two paintings in the next two days.

20 x 20 cm, watercolours on Arches 300 g watercolour paper.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Drawing bones

Drawing a skeleton together with my students. I find the details intriguing, can´t believe that´s the way we all look inside...

13 x 17 cm, pencil on sketchbook page.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Sketchcrawl #22

This time the Stockholm crowd (of three) decided to hit Arlanda Airport for our Sketchcrawl day. A big airport is great for drawing people and strange technical stuff, and we had a great day with lots of drawing challenges. And coffee.

(Curious about why we had a sketchcrawl on the 4th of April instead of the official 11th? Well, us Swedes celebrate Easter (and Christmas, and just about every other big holiday) on the Eve before the actual Day, and the 11th of April was the day when all Swedes went to their relatives to eat eggs. No one had time to go on a Sketchcrawl then, so we sneakily changed the date...)

13 x 18 cm, except the last drawing, 13 x 7 cm. Copic Multiliner SP on sketchbook pages.