[By Marcia Milner-Brage, visiting Santa Barbara, California, USA]
I've traveled through Santa Barbara, California several times over the past six years. In early February, I actually stayed long enough to dent my "Santa Barbara To Draw List". The Santa Barbara County Courthouse Tower in downtown affords a thrilling 360 degree panorama. Here: the view looking northeast. The Santa Ynez mountains are backdrop for the palm trees and red tile roofed, white stucco buildings of the city. In the far left section of my Japanese fold accordion sketchbook, note, in the mid-distance, the tall bell tower of St. Anthony's Seminary. And to the right, within the same section, the shorter twin bell tower front of Mission Santa Barbara.
For most of the hour that I drew, a six-year-old Chinese girl stood close at my side, watching my every move. It did not matter that we knew not a word of each other's language. We were in absolute sync with the task at hand: represent the scene spread out before us. I was impressed with her parents' willingness to hang out so long to accommodate her curiosity. I wish I'd taken her photo. Instead, after she left, I snapped the sketch in situ, leaning against the rod iron grate. Later. on street level, I drew one of the Courthouse's iconic Spanish Colonial Revival arched entries.