Sketchy on the Detail

Draw a little every day

Tag: pastels

Y2D87 and proper Londoner

Another walk around the commons, where I found this pond glinting in the afternoon sun. The commons run along a ridge that courses through south London, so there are flat areas and ravines such as the one these ponds are nestled in. I believe they were originally formed in the ice age, and the area has been settled since the Bronze Age. Proper Londoners then.


Y2D71 and manly

Who said pink can’t be manly? Surely all you need is a tough guy with a stern expression and it is as macho as can be.


Y2D27 and lazy sundays

I think I’m coming down with something, or at the very least, trying to avoid coming down with something. So it’s been a lazy afternoon with just enough energy for playing with water-soluble pastels and charcoal, thanks to a photo of a friend.


Y2D6 and the evening meal

Here is another go at a still life; it is basically my dinner as I was too slothful to go outside to sketch.

I must have some Mediterranean blood in me somewhere, as I’m the only person I know who loves octopus for tea, not that they make for attractive subject matter but you can’t have everything. Besides, isn’t that half the challenge – to make something unappealling visually interesting? Oh, and being able to draw it in the first place.


Hmm, I also seem to be going through a colour phase, even though it is meant to be Inktober. Oh, well….

Day 219 and new pastels

Trying out my new conté pastels today, on some A3 watercolour paper that I inked up yesterday. So naturally there is pastel dust everywhere. I did two, one didn’t turn out quite as I hoped, I’m not used to sketching at A3 (it’s A5 or A0) so the proportions were skewy. This is one is of the flowers that I bought last week and that are still going strong. Not quite right, but much better than the other one.


Day 161 and row boats

Another post inspired by pinterest imagery; row boats being the theme today. I was also trying to create a scene á la Sir Quentin Blake’s fat Stabilo watercolour pencil series but using inktense sticks and blue biro. Bright, at the very least, but not quite so spontaneous.


Day 93 and commissions

My first commission of the year…actually, my first commission ever. The lady at the local cafe saw my sketchbook and asked if I would draw the foal she’d bred. I said yes, but was unsure of what she was after so did several versions. I’m not happy with the oil pastel and she won’t be getting my sketchbook drafts, of course, but here you go.

What do you think? I’ve left in the original photo for comparison. I think she liked them, but then again, she could have just been polite.


Day 88 and memories

Not sure if oil pastels count as drawing but I have been trying to recapture from my dodgy memory the gorgeous sunset from my flight descent into Melbourne airport a week ago.  It was just a riot of glorious colour…


Day 9 and boats

Today I walked to and from work via Limehouse Basin. I have to go out of my way to do this but apparently the exercise is good for me. At least it was dry today and the walk is pleasant, following the marina walk to the Limehouse Cut canal entrance and then cutting across to walk along the Thames river path the rest of the way. I may have mentioned previously that there are many sketching opportunities on this route, so I availed myself of a couple on the way back from work this afternoon. It was bliss sketching the water, with not a soul to bother me, and I got to try out my travel sized Conté pastels I bought on Saturday.

However, I am rather rubbish at drawing boats. I will put this in context…I am slightly less rubbish at drawing boats than I am at drawing architecture. I cannot draw a straight line. You’d think that this should not be a problem drawing boats, until you realise how many straight lines are on boats. There are a lot. I did kinda know this from my week in St Ives last year, where it took me the whole week of drawing the same boat ’till I was relatively happy with it. Looks like I will be drawing this marina a lot too….

Today’s offering is a couple of boats (slightly better than the architectural view preceding them in my sketchbook). The one on the right is a narrow boat, the left is I think is a windjammer, but I am not sure. Any one recognise it (either as a boat or its type)?

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