Travel book: my road trip across the United States

Drawings of my road trip in my travel book

A French artist on the American roads!

As you may already know, I have been creating travel books for many years, during my travels in Europe, America and Asia.

The global health crisis we are going through has changed a lot my travel plans … Now, if I plan to travel, I limit myself to trips in France.

So I have decided to take out my travelbooks, and share with you my biggest trip: my four-months road trip in the United States!

A camper-van trip across the United States

First of all I present to you our traveling companion which carried us for more than 15,000 kilometers.

It was an old machine which burned a LOT of gasoline … But it was really comfortable for traveling with my 4 months-old baby … and above all … its price was very interesting !!

For this long trip, we had decided to make a road-trip from Montreal (where we were living at that time), to go to the West passing Chicago, to discover Western parks, to reach California, to drive on the famous Road 66 to go back to Eastern, to visit Louisiana, and to go up to the North.

Here are my best travel sketches (and my best memories!).

I complete my illustrations with a few words extracts from my travel book.


Chicago and its Cloud Gate sculpture in Millennium Park.

“The town and the little people we are, are reflecting in it. The sculpture is very popular: a crowd is gathered all around … it is difficult to take a picture … I take my pencils! “

Sketch of the Cloud Gate sculpture in Chicago


Deadwood and its Western atmosphere! Go back to a century before, to the time of the gold seekers! A little bit touristic, but some buildings still have an old-world charm.

Mount Rushmore

“After a bend, the four pairs of eyes of presidents staring at horizon … It is a real impressive sensation to see them in real… Carved in a light rock, their faces have beautiful contrasts thanks to the morning light ”.

Arches National Park

“A winding road climbs among the blood-red peaks. There are many photographing breaks, we want to keep in memory all these oddly shaped rocks, this huge hanged rock, fairy chimneys, and of course, the stars of the park, those which bring curious tourists from all over the world: the famous, the incredible, the breathtaking arches! “

Valley of Gods

“Valley of Gods, a rough diamond untouched by mass tourism. Difficult to put words on a so hoped landscape that we finally have in front of our eyes … We appreciate to its full value the solitude of the place. Incredible evening in this grandiose landscape with fire tones »

Las Vegas

“Landscapes are desert and arid. Mountains of sand and a few rare green tufts showing a little plant life. Las Vegas is profiling in the distance, a two million inhabitants agglomeration , on a plain surrounded by desert mountains … The climate is stifling, we have the sensation of being in an oven … It is 46 °C in the shade…”

Bodie, a ghost town

“A city which had twenty thousand inhabitants at the time of the gold rush … A fire has destroyed Bodie in the 1930s, and she became a ghost-town in 1942. We discover abandoned houses, a saloon, a general store, a church, a school. Everything is in an exceptional state of preservation. We spy through the yellow curtained windows, the interior of each wooden house. Everything is covered by a thick layer of dust, cobwebs, wallpapers stained with humidity peeled off, mattresses with visible springs … In the kitchens, gas stoves in working order, glasses, plates, pots, tin cans still closed and abandoned children’s games … We have the feeling that people left in a rush, leaving everything behind, taking with them only a suitcase…”

San Francisco

The Golden Gate Bridge and Alamo Square, two must-sees in San Francisco.

Extract from my travel book for my road trip in the USA. This watercolor represents the district of Alamo Square, San Fancisco, California.
Sketch from Alamo Square, San Francisco
Watercolor from the Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco. Extract from my travel book.
Watercolor of the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California

Highway 1

“The Highway 1 which runs along the Pacific coast. Black rocks flowing into the ocean. The panoramas reminds me Brittany landscapes. The Pacific winds let irrefutable evidences of their violence on the cypress.” (No wind when I sketched these trees!!)

Extract from my travel book for my trip in the United States of America. This painting represents the cypress on the West Coast, Highway 1, between San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Monterey cypress

Santa Barbara Pier

Extract from myt ravel book for my road trip in the USA. This watercolor represents Santa Barbara pier.

The route 66

Return to Eastern : we join Route 66, with the famous Hackberry General Store.

“The owner’s 1957 red Corvette sits in front of a really cool store. Fifties atmosphere inside with the multicolored jukebox, life-size photos of Marilyn and Elvis, and license plates hanging on the wall. Outside, old, rusty American cars, and obviously vintage gas pumps! “

San Antonio

The “river walk” of San Antonio: A charming walk along green canals: we feel like we are in Venice, but with more greenery … the gondolas are just missing!

Extract from my travel book in the USA: Sketch of the San Antonio River walk.
Sketch of the San Antonio River walk


The last big step on our road trip is Louisiana. BIG crush!

Lake Martin

I loved the bearded trees in the “Bayou” on Lake Martin!

Extract from my travel book during my trip accross the USA. This watercolor represents the lake Martin in Louisiana
Sketch of the Lake Martin in Louisiana

New Orleans

New Orleans is a very special city. A very European soul reigns in the city center … which is normal for a district called the “French Quarter”!

Drawing extract from my travel book  for my trip accross the USA. This watercolor represents the town of New Orleans
Urban sketch in the town of New Orleans

Oak Alley Plantation

Oak Alley Plantation, a former property built during the sugar cane plantation era. The mansion is grand and has served as the backdrop for many films, including “Interview with The Vampire”! We are admiring the famous alley of three-hundred-years old oaks that leads to the luxurious villa.

Extract from my travel book during my road trip in the USA. This watercolor represents the Oak Alley Plantation property in Louisiana.
Watercolor from the Oak Alley Plantation property


Cocodril is a village entirely built on stilts! I found its amazing, and very poetic, these colorful dwellings on legs!

Extract from my travel book in Louisiana. This watercolor represents  Cocodril, a town built on stilts.
Cocodril, a village built on stilts, Louisiana.

Here, I hope I have made you travel a little with these extracts from my travel book!

Did you know that these notebooks are the origin of my wedding-books?

It was in 2014, for my brother’s wedding, that I have created the first wedding-book!

Would you like to see the “wedding” version ?!

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