Urban Sketching


July 2014  This counts as my first ‘success’ – meaning that I like it! It gave me more confidence to explore the urban landscape locally. Thanks to Miguel Herranz and the Urban Sketching workshop for doing what it said on the lid – pushing my boundaries.




Back in Coventry I did a few more with a similar technique before branching out into other styles.

men waiting-001




Last 12 Months - 21


Sketch Cov2

This vintage clothes shop in Fargo Village was fun, but cut short by cold fingers. Urban sketching in winter has its challenges!


Herbert Dec 6.14So for the next venture I was warm and snug in the cafe at the Herbert Art Gallery again.


A cosy cafe scene in Stratford…



Priory Hall, Coventry University, where many years ago I worked as a Student Counsellor on the ground floor. It was lunchtime, but of course not many of the curtains were drawn !




Both of these came from the 4th SketchCoventry outing, based once again in The Herbert, who let us use the top room with great views. It’s so good to have a supportive local Art Gallery!


This last sketch made me realise I had to get to grips with drawing cars, so I have begun the process! I found a sketchbook I bought a while ago – a refreshing change from the white background.



It’s not just cars that I need to get to grips with! Trees are a challenge too – how much detail do I need to convey  their texture and density? I’m not patient enough to go for serious detail and not skilful enough to capture them in a few strokes, so more work required here ….


This one I was pleased with though. I’d been to see an exhibition by Tessa Beaver, with some stunning etchings of trees, which helped me to concentrate more. It’s sad that every year there are fewer big trees visible from my window. Just this one left now.



A reminder here of a great evening at Three Choirs Vineyard in Newent, with beautiful rolling hills planted with vines, the evening sun and the prospect of wine tasting ahead.




MAY 2015

SketchCoventry and the Urban sketchers workshop have produced yet more attempts to capture something of the urban environment .CCI09042015This one was a 15 minute sketch as part of the workshop.


CCI09052015_2And as  you can see, these two came out of the May SketchCoventry meet up.CCI09052015


Lastly, my favourite of the day, was this one ,sitting cosily in Drapers out of the wind and looking towards the Cathedral.


Over 6 months has passed since I put any sketches here. I’m wondering if I’ll see any signs of change or development?


This is one of the more interesting sketches I think.Part of the ‘waste products’ story on the blog.



This enormous old engine cheerfully guards the entrance from the car park.

This one too I really like. It’ s such a great piece of engineering with such character, and I think the drawing captures something of that.

sketchken            sketchstroud3

Here I’m back in my comfort zone – grey with a splash of colour. Yes, I definitely need to get out more!

June 2016

Personal development, psychogeography,printing, and of course urban sketching – all swirling about in the mix. It’s interesting to look back and see what, if anything has changed, if not ‘developed’. I think I have more confidence in  whipping my sketchbook out in public places, realising that however critical I might be, others are a lot more generous and complimentary – and that sketching is a great way to engage people in conversation whatever the quality of the drawing. it draws people in – there’s another blog post in here I am sure!

So here are some of the latest sketches – the bell

– which led to an interesting conversation with the young bar man who turned out to be studying graphic design.



This was one of an extended series of duck sketches, coming from a daily walk by the canal and a growing appreciation of the complexity of duck ( and swan, coot and moorhen) anatomy.


morgan 1

Drawing cars has always been a challenge. They never really look like I think they do! This one was just sitting there, saying to me – go on, try me!




The format of my current sketch book  – a great size to slip into a pocket – dictates a lot of what I draw. There was no reason why I couldn’t choose a different book, as this was done at home, but there is safety and comfort in the familar!




Same format but I was pleased with the water in this one – so hard to represent in 2 dimensions with a limited palate!




Back to  greys here, but I was trying to capture the exuberance of June growth with tone not colour. A reasonable effort – yes, the critical voice is itself toning down a little!


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