Stephanie Bower

Stephanie Bower | Architectural Illustration: | Sketching Workshops: | Sketches: on Instagram at @stephanieabower & | Urban Sketchers Blog Correspondent | Signature member of the Northwest Watercolor Society

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Before I head to India...


This Saturday, October 28, I return to India with my friend Nancy for 3.5 weeks of travel and sketching! I can't wait, as our trip in 2011 is what sparked my return to sketching after 25 years!!

Here are a couple of ways to follow that adventure, I can promise lots of color to cheer you up:

Instagram  sketches: @stephanieabower  &  photos:  @stephanieabower.fotos

blog It's really hard to post to from my phone when traveling, but I will try!

And here are 50% discount links for my two online classes through Craftsy (nearly 10,000 participants, globally!):

     Perspective for Sketchers  50% discount  
     or here

     The Essentials of Sketching Architecture  50% discount  or 


     The Urban Sketching Handbook: Understanding Perspective

     The Urban Sketching Art Pack (available November 1 in stores and online!!!)

And if you are curious about the art supplies I use when I travel, look here

Thank you so much, and happy travels to all!

Friday, October 20, 2017

New Urban Sketching Art Pack!!

Surprise!  A new Urban Sketching Handbook, the the Urban Sketching Art Pack, is coming out in early November!! (And yes, that is my sketch of the Binnehof in Den Haag on the cover, sketched last year sitting next to Marleen Dambrink, Den Haag Urban Sketcher!)

The publisher has taken about 1/4 of each of the previous books in the series and put them into one volume, paired with a sketchbook filled with drawing prompts. Makes a great gift!

From Amazon:
"Now in a new format, and including all the core techniques from the best-selling Urban Sketching Handbook series, this portable package includes a 112-page informational book and a 112-page companion sketchpad full of challenges to get you started. 

This guide tackles specific challenges of making sketches on location. You’ll find out what to do rain or shine, quickly or slowly, and the most suitable techniques for every situation. Learn how to frame your scene, create a strong composition, and add detail and interest. Find out how to draw figures in motion, in proportion, and how to capture a person's features. Understand the anatomy of a good sketch by learning the secrets to how to draw in perspective. And best of all, learn how to maximize your location drawing opportunities by finding sketch-worthy events, choosing colorful subject matter, and immersing yourself in the sights of sounds of your fascinating city. Drawing the places where you live, work, and play is a great way to show appreciation and creativity. Show your world, one drawing at a time!" 

On another note, I'm headed to India shortly for 3+ weeks of sketching! I invite you to please follow my adventures:

               Instagram  @stephanieabower and @stephanieabower.fotos
and when I am able to post, this blog:

Thank you!!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Streets of Holland

Each summer that I'm teaching in Europe, I visit my family in Holland. I love them and I love visiting them, as the streets are so walkable, such a beautiful scale, and the variety in the brick of the buildings is just remarkable.

I got a little bit of sketching in, despite cold and damp weather. This is continuation of the series sketches of 4 sketches I started doing in Italy, and I ended up doing these in every city I visited this summer as a way to save the paper in my sketchbook... here is the series from Den Haag. My favorite one is the Passage shown above, as the color is just a blush on my pencil drawing. It was tricky to catch both the glass dome and the floor in one view!

The sketchbook is the Pentalic Aqua Journal, fairly new in the 7" x 10" size. I love the size, love the paper as it's true 140lb. watercolor paper. Click on the image to see it larger!

And here is a quick sketch done while enjoying coffee in the Dam of Amsterdam with my aunt and cousin, listening to them talk (in Spanish) while I sketched. Heaven.

This sketch is all about the roof lines that punctuate the sky around the giant, busy plaza...thus the simple yellow sky that emphasizes the roofs.

In ten days I leave for a 3.5 week sketching trip to INDIA! If you are interested in following my adventures, please find me on Instagram @stephanieabower and my photos will be at @stephanieabower.fotos.  I will try to post here as well, just don't usually find it easy to do when traveling. 

Monday, October 16, 2017

Draw Civita 2017 x 2

Fall is really here, and it has me reminiscing about the heat in Italy this past June. This summer, I taught two DRAW CIVITA workshops in the amazing town of Civita di Bagnoregio...the fifth summer in a row. I am really grateful to The Civita Institute for this opportunity, and in general, everyone seems to love the workshop set in this incredible town. Thanks also to Winsor & Newton for providing fresh tubes of juicy watercolor paints for us all.

Civita is only accessible by foot, and because there are no cars, it makes the town a wonderful medieval-feeling pedestrian-only zone...great for claiming a spot to sketch! 

Here are photos from the workshops...5+ days of small groups, long days of sketching, great meals, beautiful scenery, and a day trip to the Villa Lante Italian Renaissance garden. All in all, pretty great.

Sketching just inside the main gate, the Porta Santa Maria.

In the shade of the Piazza San Marco.
Piazza sketches...and that is my watercolor set up in the upper left-hand corner.

My watercolor thumbnail showing the steps in painting and the morning demo...

The first workshop group getting ready to paint...thank you, Winsor & Newton
for the sponsorship with new tubes of watercolor paint!

Lunch break where we soaked out feet to cool off at the Villa Lante.

Second workshop group enjoying a wonderful dinner at Alma Civita!! Thank you, Maurizio, Rochi! Love that orange/rosemary tiramisu!

Group at the Villa Lante, standing in front of a long stone table that is a fountain, and yes, it was used for meals! 

Wonderful dinner at Alma Civita...

Thanks so much to everyone for TWO fabulous workshops!! I enjoyed meeting each of you and seeing your beautiful work!!

I am now also planning ahead to next year, however, due to the extreme heat of the past few years, I'm bumping the workshop to some time during the last 2 weeks in May...contacting me now (email: if you are interested!
Ciao, tutti!!!