Henry B. Metcalf Carriage House

This great little building was a Carriage House for Henry B. Metcalf in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. In 1867, Metcaff helped to form the Boston Button Company as the firm’s senior partner. In 1886 he was elected to a seat in the Rhode Island state Senate, but his ardent stand for prohibition led the liquor industry to oppose his re-election, and he was defeated after only one term in office. Despite the defeat, Metcalf was a leader in pushing for a constitutional amendment to ban the sale of liquor in Rhode Island. To this end he also served as the president of the Rhode Island Temperence Union. In 1893, Metcalf was the Prohibition Party’s candidate for Governor of Rhode Island, winning some 7% of the total vote. Pilot Falcon fountain pen with Noodler’s Bulletproof black ink in a Stillman and Birn sketchbook.

2016-08-31 139 Main Street


Bristol County Superior Courthouse

The Bristol County Superior Courthouse was designed by architect Frank Irving Cooper from nearby Bridgewater and built in 1894 in the Romanesque-style. The stone structure contains a 170-foot tall central tower capped with a copper dome. The building’s large  hip roof is also entirely clad in copper. The dome was originally topped with a large copper flame, which was taken down in the recent past for fear that it may fall. The superior courthouse is the fourth courthouse to be located on or near this site since 1747, when Taunton became the shire town (country seat) for Bristol County, Massachusetts after Bristol was split off from the Bay State and became part of Rhode Island. Stylist marker with Faber Castell Pitt pens in a Stillman and Birn Sketchbook.

2016-08-30 Bristol Country Superior Court

Hardy Hibiscus

A watercolor sketch of the Hardy Hibiscus that is now blooming in our yard. The giant 8″  flowers usually burst out overnight and only last for a few days. They are gorgeous while they last over a couple of weeks. The Hardy Hibiscus is hybridized from wildflowers that have the largest flowers of them all, these are yard shrubs that are winter-hardy as far north as New England. The hybridized flowers originated from  the solid red species called Scarlet Rose Mallow, Texas Star, and other common names and the most famous wild species that grows wild in wetland swamps from Massachusetts to Florida. Holbein watercolors on the last page of my current Stillman and Birn sketchbook.

2016-08-28 Hibiscus

Commercial Street

A wonderful day spent on Cape Cod including visiting a couple of galleries of artists that we like. This is a view from Commercial Street in Provincetown on Cape Cod looking towards a church on the hill overlooking town.  Pilot Falcon fountain pen with Noodler’s Bulletproof black ink in a Stillman and Birn Beta sketchbook.

2016-08-27 Commercial Street

Beth’s Café

On our way onto the Cape for our Saturday road trip, we were going to stop at our usual spot for breakfast but the power was out in that area of town which forced us to explore. We found this wonderful little café an had a wonderful scrambled egg wrap. Beth’s Bakery and Café is owned by local lifetime residents of the beautiful historical town of Sandwich, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. This building was originally built as a Puritan Church and was owned later by the Catholic Church. The interiors are very simple with the original wood floors and a wonderful display case of baked goods. Pilot Falcon fountain pen with Noodler’s Bulletproof black ink and Holbein watercolors in a Stillman and Birn sketchbook.

2016-08-26 Beths Cafe

Roma Tomatoes

Roma Tomato a plum tomato popularly used both for canning and producing tomato paste because of their slender and firm nature. Commonly found, Roma tomatoes are also known as Italian tomatoes or Italian Plum Tomatoes. Roma tomatoes are egg or pear shaped and red when fully ripe. They have fewer seeds than other varieties which make them good for sauces. This sketch is of 3 tomatoes that varied in color from a very light green to a ripe red/orange. Holbein watercolors in a Stillman and Birn sketchbook.

2016-08-24 Roma Tomatoes


Cattails are wetland plants with a unique flowering spike, flat blade like leaves that reach heights from 3 to 10 feet.  They are one of the most common plants in large marshes and on the edge of ponds. Under the right conditions, cattails can grow and spread vigorously.  The pollinated flowers develop into fluffy seed heads, blowing across a pond in autumn breezes.  Just as commonly, cattails spread through their root system. In fact, cattails at the edge of pond can grow faster than fertilized corn in a field!  Holbein watercolors in a Stillman and Birn Sketchbook.

2016-08-22 Cat Tails