Saturday dawned grey and snowy, Michael was sensibly in bed with a cold, but I braved the chill wind and met the other members of Urban Sketchers Tyne and Wear huddling in the entrance to Haymarket Metro.
The plan had been to draw in and around the campus of Newcastle University but the weather made that deeply unattractive, so we opted instead for a return to the Great North Museum : Hancock.
This would be our third visit to the Hancock and for me yet another chance to draw pots. Annoyingly, I discovered I'd left my pencil case at home, but found a pack of Pitt pens in the bottom of my bag.
Attic Amphora and Funerary Pots
(Pitt fine marker in A4 sketchbook)
Cypriot Jug with Sphinxes c 600 BC
(Pitt marker in A4 sketchbook)
Sadly, the Hancock has a policy of closing its cafe at 3.30 so while some of us managed to snatch a coffee and a scone before they closed, Richard was reduced to drinking my little jug of milk.
In need of further caffeine we upped sticks and moved to McKenna's Cafe, just across the road. There we were able to sit and watch the snow being blown around outside, draw the Students' Union Building or simply draw one another.
Unusually for me, I opted for the latter and Bardon Mike, who'd joined us for the day from Berwick Sketchers, helpfully sat very still while I obsessed over the folds in his hoodie to such an extent that I can't help feeling he looks a little like a character drawn by Dürer (see top of post).
I thought the time round the table in McKenna's, laughing and sketching one another was a lovely way to round out the day and Kim even managed to get a photo of me smiling with Jenny (but then it was nice to see Jenny back with the group!).
(Photo: Kim Willis)
Next sketch crawl : 28th April, venue to be decided.
All this snow is making me wish for sunnier times past (and to come, I hope).
Following on from Caps and Bags, I decided to see what I could make of a photograph of shoes I took in Croatia a few years ago. I love the way these colourful "jelly" shoes are scattered across a dark background, but the surprise came in finding a woman's head peering through the arrangement.
I completed most of this today and was optimistic of finishing altogether over the weekend, but had forgotten that on Saturday there's another Sketch Crawl, weather permitting.
A problem with my recent reliance on composing subjects with the aid of Photoshop was highlighted this week as the snow came down. Although I still had access to Photoshop, I find working from a screen impossible and I couldn't print anything off because my printer gave up the ghost at the beginning of the week.
Snow-related setbacks meant my replacement printer didn't arrive until yesterday. In the meantime, to stave off cabin fever, I pulled out a printout I'd worked on a while ago and produced this small painting over a couple of days.
I like it but am interested to see that it's mostly painted in the way I would have painted it were I using oil paint.
Welcome to my blog. I'm a professional artist working in oil, acrylic and drawing. I'm still very much a figurative painter aiming at some kind of modern representation. I believe in the continuing value of painting and follow in its long and honourable tradition.