Last Saturday, Urban Sketchers London met at the Wallace Collection. I chose to draw in the Arms and Armoury Galleries, and drew a series of helmets (above). I was particularly interested in the helmets which provided full cover for the head, and had a strange and dramatic relationship with the human face.
Continuing the theme of heads and faces, here are two drawings done in the Africa Galleries of the British Museum. The one on the left is a grave marker from Sudan, and the other a bronze head from Benin.
I did the drawing above this week at the Museum of the Order of St John, in Clerkenwell. The museum tells the history of the Order of St John, established in eleventh century Jerusalem to provide medical care for sick pilgrims, and then acquiring a military role in the crusades. After a complex history, it is now the St John Ambulance Brigade. A second drawing, below, shows the process I am using quite a bit at the moment, drawing in coloured pencil onto a pre-prepared background of water colour.
The two drawings below were done at the National Army Museum in Chelsea. The first is a display related to the battle of Waterloo, the second, a display of historic army uniforms.
Yesterday I was drawing birds in the galleries of the Natural History Museum in London. Once again, I had prepared pages of my sketchbook, this time with acrylic gesso and watercolour. The birds are drawn in coloured pencil, with no attempt at realism or scale. Here is an imaginary Bird World.
Recently, I have been experimenting with a new, mixed media approach to my drawing. Using a concertina sketchbook, I first prepare backgrounds with ink or watercolour, collage, and acrylic gesso. Then, on location, I add drawing, and I have been experimenting with different pens and pencils. Here are some examples, drawn in Dulwich Park, at the British Museum, at Kew Gardens, and on a recent meet-up of Urban Sketchers London, at the Barbican.
Today I have been drawing in the Islamic galleries of the British Museum. The challenge was to capture the form and texture of these beautiful artefacts, as well as the decoration.