Today I’m taking you to Mildred’s Coffeehouse with this little doodlewash done in my little Moleskine! It’s a popular coffee place in the Kansas City Crossroads district. And yes, it’s actually that bright and orange! I love this place, and it’s very close to work and home so it’s a great place to meet for a spot of coffee.

For this doodlewash I used my new palette of M. Graham paints! I bought the deluxe set of 10. Turns out I had some credit card points sitting there, and what better way to spend them than on art supplies (okay, they were meant for plane tickets, but since we’re not going anywhere lately, I put them to good use!). And I love these paints!!

M. Graham paints are less expensive than other professional watercolors, but have a ton more pigment in them. This means you can get everything from solid saturated colors to light washes, all while using much less paint. So in the end, they’re actually one of the best and the least expensive professional watercolors you can buy!

And even better, they use honey as their primary binding medium which means the paints don’t harden as quickly in or out of the tubes. Since I’m standing by my little paint tin that’s not airtight like the larger ones, this is fantastic for me! And the colors are both rich and smooth and frankly a sheer joy to use!

Am I gushing?! Yes! I feel like I’ve found the paint I’ve been dreaming of and that’s not an overstatement. Plus they’re committed to green manufacturing with 100% solvent-free paint, they use renewable energy, and they have a third of the product waste of the industry average. In my book, that all adds up to, yes please!! Ok…sorry for the commercial…I’m not being paid for this…but they are so cool!!

Where was I? Oh yes! Mildred’s Coffeehouse…apparently I had too much caffeine! They are family-owned and were established in 1994. I should note also that they serve wonderful baked goods, breakfast and sandwiches. And I love them too, so they seemed like a good candidate to break in my new paint.

I love this area of the city, and it keeps growing and changing each month with new businesses popping up all over the place. But I’ll leave you now, as my coffee buzz is wearing off and well… I really need to doodlewash something with this new paint!

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47 thoughts on “Mildred’s Coffeehouse

  1. What delicious looking paints. Good word of warning from Lindsay. 🐝 😎
    Mildred’s looks like a delightful hangout. I hope that you shared your colorful doodlewash to your friends at Mildred’s, you did them proud!

  2. I love coffee! And one of the first things so do when I visit a city is to find a locally owned coffee shops! You are fabulous at drawing buildings. I’m finding it difficult to get the perspective right. Gorgeous color!

  3. Looks and sounds like a great little place! The new paints have really nice hues; I’ll have to give them a try when I finish all the tubes I have. How do you keep your Moleskine pages from buckling with the watercolors applied to it?

    1. There’s only a slight bit of buckle, but I’m not using a lot of water on it (skies are wet in wet and can be a little tough). I only use the Art Plus Watercolor Albums too because people said the regular Moleskines don’t take water well and buckle a lot. I don’t know as I just skipped them and took them at their word! Lol But this one I have works really great for me!

    1. You just like to make me blush, Jodi!! 😊😊 Is this because I’ve got everyone calling you an artist now? 😉 love ya back! And yay to M Graham! I don’t know why exactly, but I just connected with them instantly! Was going to give my other tubes to Philippe but now he wants M Graham too. I guess I’ll share 😉

  4. Charlie, I was just painting with M Graham in my Stillman & Brin journal and then read your post :). I like these paints very much too- instant rewet! I keep the pans I’ve filled in a bamboo box. Love your painting. How long did it take you? I have an online urban sketching class that I’m taking soon. Thank you for the inspiration!

    1. Thanks Jessica!! My sketches this size lately all take around 15-20 minutes or so. I’m also taking an online class on Craftsy when I can and want to sketch a bit faster still. (Faster single line drawings are one goal!) To complete the doodlewash, it’s another 15-20. I’ve been busier and busier lately with work, so trying to get to where I can do something on a lunch break and still have time to eat! Lol

  5. Fantastic Doodlewash Charlie! And great info on M Graham watercolors. I have several tubes of Winsor & Newton and Daniel Smith. I have taken lots of WC classes and purchased what the teacher recommended. Happy to know they are 100% solvent free paint! A toast of (coffee) joe to you! 🎨💜☕️

          1. Oh, thank you for asking… *blushing* 😉 I don´t know – how does it work? If you find something you like, you can use it… Or should I doodlewash something special for the occasion? Thank you again for asking, that´s really kind! Looking forward to my coffee! 😊☕️ Want some cake in exchange? 🍰

  6. M Graham paints ARE the bomb! I’m SO glad you are now a convert! I hope my sales pitch helped! Love this painting, particularly the perspective on the slope. Really admire your work with all subjects, and particularly buildings, which is where I’m weakest (well, one of my many weak areas lol!) Thanks again for a wonderful post, Charlie, and it makes my morning to hear you singing the praises of M. Graham paint!

  7. So vivid and inviting! You can’t go far wrong with blues and oranges. It’s rather like my parents’ house, the front of which they recently painted ora… I mean terracotta. 😉 (It’s definitely orange.)

  8. I just love your style of writing and doodlewashing, Charlie. You’re so cute – the points were for plane tickets, and yes – art supplies are worth the points, too! A reward in and of themselves, with all that great color – for that bright orange building. Glad you enjoyed the coffee and had a good doodlewash time.

  9. Oh wow, this looks great! I’m always looking for more *affordable* materials. Art is an expensive hobby! Also, I love that they are committed to green production; such a nice plus!

  10. Lovely sketch of a great looking place, love coffee hang outs. So glad you are enjoying the M. Graham paints, they really are amazing and wonderful to use. The tour of your beloved city is so enjoyable, and your obvious delight in sharing makes it that much more sweeter. Peace.

  11. Thought I’d pass this along because it made me love and appreciate M. Graham paints even more. I recently emailed the company inquiring about their gouache and I received a reply from Diane describing their operation- “Our whole operation is 9 folks and a part time stray cat in a 3000 sq. foot cinderblock building surrounded by hops fields in rural Oregon.” She also sent me a photo of their warehouse. Maybe that can be my first urban sketch!

    1. That’s so awesome! I know Diane has commented on my blog once before. They seem super nice and responsive and what’s not to love about small operation?! Hehe Love that the stray cat only works part time. You should sketch there warehouse and doodlewash with M. Graham paint! 😃👍🏻 Of course to count as an Urban Sketch it would have to be done on location (they have rules…hehe… doodlewash doesn’t! 😊) and if you do go, you have to take me with you! Okay, that’s nobody’s rule actually, it just sounds super fun!

      1. Doodlewash rules, with no on locale rules 😉 I appreciate you letting me know on the urban sketch- which makes sense for it to be urban- one has to be out in the urban too.

        1. Hehe… It’s just with the urban sketcher pros told me! (Their whole thing is direction observation from life…which of course is cool…sometimes!) But you inspired me to mention it in today’s post. Rules can be silly. Doodlewash has a “drop of water” as the price of entry! Lol Anyone can do it… any way they like!!

    2. Jessica, I was wondering if you went ahead and bought their gouache, and if so, what you think of it? Does it stay semi-moist the same way their watercolours do? I like to keep my gouache in an airtight watercolour palette, but even then it doesn’t stay moist for more than a week or so. Thanks!

      1. Hi Lindsay, I haven’t gotten any yet. This is what she told me “it does not reconstitute like the watercolor. We use the same pigment is both watercolor and gouache but the gouache lays on top of the paper in more of a layer. However, we do not use whites or chalks to get the opacity so you can dilute our gouache all the way down to a wash without the chalkiness.” I have one tube of Brilliant Gold Holbein gouache that I use. I reconstitute it, but I have to work at it.

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