Wednesday, May 20, 2009

At the Pub (again!)

Some sketches from the Penderel's Oak on High Holborn. Been feeling like loosening it up lately so did these quick studies, with some patches (top one, of the man reading), some scratches (the middle one), and rather thickly applied ink (the guy's jacket and other bits in the bottom one).

Around Lincoln's Inn

Just because I had a request for it.... here are some initial images from around Lincoln's Inn, near High Holborn. More to come soon... It's a really beautiful part of London with some scenic old buildings (many now converted into law offices and the like) but what got me this time was the great big park in the middle of it. It was here that I settled myself down and sketched what caught my eye: a man watching pigeons wistfully, a row of jolly London taxicabs, and this one man sitting with his friend looking pretty sad. He was telling her something and she was just patiently listening, not really bothered or worried... just listening. This time around I really felt like being loose and dirty - lots of textures, lots of crumbling ink lines against the rough paper. As for the image of the rooftops, it just seemed like a poetic subject to me - silent watchers of the human drama from high above it all... I love the rooftops in London because they give great opportunities to indulge my love of abstract shapes and textures (this drawing is essentially just a series of rectangles set off against each other with different textures and shading). The cathedral dome in the background hopefully lends an air of old world dignity to the rather working-class subject matter...

Friday, May 15, 2009

Hit the Ground Running

While in London I'm hitting the ground running with a little illustration contract for Goodenough College, an academic residence in central London catering to graduate students and their families. This is the cover for their upcoming yearbook. They liked it so much they immediately asked me to provide illustrations of the College for a series of fridge magnets! Never done those before but there's a first time for everything!... This is done in my usual way when it comes to more detailed illustrations: first I draw the subject by hand in my sketchbook with my brush pen, then scan it in and manipulate it, colour it and add textures on my Macbook Pro. In fact this illustration is a composite of three separate sketches: one of the College building, one of the seated couple, and one of the man talking on the phone. Clever viewers will notice I plucked him from my Russell Square drawing (below) ;) For more illustrations like this please visit my website:

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Around High Holborn...

My girlfriend works around Gray's Inn near High Holborn St., downtown London. This is a lamppost I sketched in a small park in Gray's Inn Field on our morning walk to her work. Also included here is a sketch of two men in a pub (The Penderel's Oak - also on High Holborn). I think I captured the contrast in their faces (and characters?) well enough...