Generally when I travel I take a sketchbook and watercolours, and do sketches when I get the opportunity or when a good subject catches my eye. I have just returned home from a very busy trip to the UK and although I always had my sketchbook with me, time was not always on my side. However, below are a few of the quick drawings I did do. The first one is of women at different tables in the cafe at the National Portrait Gallery cafe. I saw the BP National Portrait Prize there – 55 very competent portraits, but nothing that moved me greatly. I noted that they receive almost 2000 submissions, but hang only 55 works … I also saw a small exhibition of gouache portraits there which I loved. They were by Humphrey Ocean, and were of people who come to his studio, quick, loose and very appealing, they really seemed to capture character.
The next sketch was a woman on a bus, texting, and the last one is of fresh hazelnuts. I hadn’t seen them before, but was told they are delicious. In fact they were fairly bland, but beautiful objects. They were in a tiny organic fruit shop under the railway arches in Bermondsey. There is a proliferation of micro businesses in these arches – bakeries, gin factories, breweries, places that sell coffee or smoked salmon or cheese, mostly only open on a Saturday morning. Wonderful!