Sunday, 26 April 2009

...and to finish off that page

The weather is glorious again today, so I popped down to my garden to finish off the page that I started at work on Friday. Euphorbia and sempervivum.

Friday, 24 April 2009

A quick sketch after work

The weather was glorious today; warm and sunny but with a bit of a breeze so it wasn't too hot (although it's still much warmer than I would expect for April). As such I knocked off work early so that I could sit around in my client's garden for half an hour and try and sketch some more flowers. Tulip 'Raspberry Ripple' (good name, eh?), bluebells, and a random cornus leaf.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Oh garden of mine...

I haven't sat down in my own garden for MONTHS. Literally. That's the trouble with being a gardener, you spend all your time in gardens for other people, and when you get home you're too tired to spend time in your own.

This evening I was no less tired than usual, but the weather was beautiful and I suddenly felt the desperate need to just go and sit outside. So I did.

I ended up with a pretty random composition consisting of apple blossom, a hosta, and a tulip (because I thought the page needed some colour). They've come out pretty well I think. The blossom and hosta were sketched with pencil, then ink, then the colour added. The tulip was a brave (!) attempt at painting straight away, then inking in some definition afterwards. I say 'brave'... but really I was just too lazy to walk to the other end of the garden to fetch my pencil...

Monday, 20 April 2009

Cakes and cookies

The friend I went to stay with over the weekend had baked a delicious selection of cakes and cookies. Unfortunately I'm lactose intolerant, and they all had chocolate in - so I could have them, but only in limited doses! She packed a box full of goodies for me to take away, and when I popped some on a plate today they looked so good I thought they ought to be immortalised... so here they are!

Sunday, 19 April 2009

A week in sketches

Monday, 13 April 2009

A lovely bank holiday (part 3)

My handbag weighs a tonne (in fact, technically, it weighs just under a stone!). It's full of all sorts of things that I might need on a day-to-day basis. I went through my bag the other week and it contained all sorts, from tissues to painkillers to scissors to spare decking screws to perfume to a keyring torch shaped like a cow (which moos when it lights up).

Like I said, it contains pretty much everything I *might* need. So I wondered what I could get away with as a bare minimum. This sketch shows the extremely whittled down list. It's pretty comprehensive I think, as long as i don't get a headache, or have an asthma attack, or want to floss my teeth, or need to see in the dark... ;)

A lovely bank holiday (Part 2)

A wee sketch of the paintbox and brush I'm using.

A lovely bank holiday (Part 1)

I had to work today, which is fine because I do love my job (although I could have done without the rain this morning!), but I was pleased to finish just after lunch so that I could have the afternoon to myself.

Last night while I was tidying I found an old A6 sketchpad that only has half a dozen or so pages left. I've had this pad for about ten years (seriously!) and I thought that it was about time I blooming well finished it! So, this morning before work I decided to use the remaining pages to make random sketches that illustrate my everyday life.

This first sketch was actually done before I left for work - it's an almost perfect snapshot of my morning routine.

Sunday, 12 April 2009

A colourful end to the week

I managed to get up early as planned and went for a short drive down to Ladbroke Grove, where the streets full of cream-coloured houses are punctuated by the odd few in vibrant colours. I chose these two houses as they're ones I pass regularly, being just around the corner from my local art supply shop.

I would have liked to stay out longer, but have learned the important lesson that one really ought to have breakfast before heading out as the growling of my stomach was awfully distracting!

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Some random sketches

A few weeks ago I started a page of random sketches. I did two late at night while I was sat in bed - one was a pendant I'd just been given, and one was a curious bottle - both were chosen because they caught my eye whilst I was in bed. The rest of that page has remained blank for a while because nothing else appealed to me (and I've been so exhausted lately that I've gone straight to sleep each night!).

Today I was at work and we found a toad. He was rather lovely, so I snapped a quick photo with my phone before we moved him to a safe spot behind the shed. Mr. Toad became the missing piece for that page of random sketches, and as it's the 22nd World Wide SketchCrawl ( today it would have been a shame not to do at least one sketch!

I'm a bit sad that I was too disorganised to participate in this SketchCrawl, and I had been hoping to make it my first. Never mind, there's always the next time, and I think to make up for it I'm going to try and get up early tomorrow and go for a drive to find something funky and local to sketch.

Monday, 6 April 2009

Sketch dated 06-04-2009

This brings us up to date! This is another sketch done from a photograph, as it's one of those lovely cottages I pass on my way to the garden we're working on in Hertfordshire. One of the things I love about the route to that job is the names of the little country roads - this house is in Bottom Lane!

Sketch dated 31/03/2009

I'm really pleased with the way this came out, as I had to use a photograph for reference. I'd been so busy at work in this garden that I ran out of time on my parking meter, so had to leave very abruptly when I'd finished. I snapped a pic though, and did the sketch that evening. I love this garden, and have only recently re-started the maintenance for it after a break of a year whilst the client maintained it.

Sketch dated 27/03/2009

We spent this week working on a garden out in the wilds of Hertfordshire, and as a result I had to drive through a lot of winding country lanes and cute villages. I passed any number of lovely looking cottages on my way, but there was generally nowhere suitable to pull over (plus I was usually rushing either to or from work!). We finished work a little early on the Friday so I took the opportunity to pull over and capture a view of a house on the village green.

Sketch dated 19/03/2009

This is a view within one of my favourite gardens. The sketch was done in its entirety on site.

Sketch dated 13/03/2009

The first sketch in my book! This sketch is of a pond that my colleague Tracey and I had been renovating (rebuilding the waterfall etc.), and we were really happy with the way the job had gone. The sketch was done on site and the colour added at home later.

So... let's start with my sketchbook. I removed the textblock from a somewhat tatty-looking vintage book on art and replaced them with pages of watercolour paper. The paper I used was leftover from when I did art at A-level, so it's about ten years old and I haven't the foggiest what sort it is!

Some extra motivation never hurt!

Having been inspired to start sketching, using watercolours for the first time, I thought I'd start a blog to record my efforts in a place I can access from anywhere. I'm aiming to complete a sketch each week, and that keeping my memories as sketches will prove more interesting than simply taking endless photos that I just keep stored on the computer and never look at again.