Beautiful brickwork

I don’t know much about bricks, except that they are fired clay. But I do like to see them when they are used decoratively. The way they are laid is called the ‘bond’ where it depends whether they are laid horizontally across the surface of the wall, or with the short end showing on the face of the wall and the length turned 90° so that the brick is across into the layer behind or allows the wall to turn the corner at the edge of the building.

As you can see from this photo, different coloured bricks are often used to make patterns and shapes in the brickwork or are used to frame tiled areas of text stating when the building was built.

I also know that brick sizes changed over time. That they were smaller in the past and hand made. Then molds were made and the brick sizes became standardised. I don’t know all the history of that sorry.

Spirals and patterns

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My drawing challenge today is to sketch some repetitions. I’m not sure what it’s going to be. Might be roof tiles, bricks or leaves.

It’s pouring down with rain outside so I might wait a while for the rain to pass over. The picture above is a house leek that I’ve duplicated to bring out the pattern more. That brings in the idea of repetition, the leaf shapes twist and turn. I shall ponder on what to draw….

Wall at Spode

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This is a wall in the China halls in Spode. Water has got in and damp is creeping up the wall. The fire extinguisher and bracket is long gone but the signs remain. I love the red and green contrasting colours, and it’s clear where the wall has been rebuilt or pointed and the scars of its life, like scars on a face. The dereliction is like an aging body, cracking and damaged.

I love flaking paint, brickwork and seeing the history written in the structure. I love taking photos of it and trying to paint it.

Reflections

DSC_1979I took this photo in the pub tonight, it was of a picture of old terraced houses and factories, but the reflections on the glass make it look odd, almost like an alien invasion.

Imagine the world a century or so ago. Electric light was just starting to be used although many people still used gas light. Someone trips a switch and bright blue light shines out… Amazing.

In actual fact there was an arc light on display in Blackpool when electricity was introduced and people came for miles to see it. (I may have got this wrong ! Don’t quote me).

Anyway it’s funny what you find interesting.

More wobbly bricks

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Painting bricks is hard. Especially when the image is tiny. I’m trying to get this finished, but so many bricks, I don’t like drawing them out with straight lines, so each one is a bit wobbly. We shall see….

Also it’s hard to work off a phone. I need to get photos I’m working on printed off.

Plus, I need to leave bits of the painting out. I don’t want metal fencing on the picture, or the striped barrier. But I will add the hanging baskets and flower tubs.

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Old barn

Interesting architecture at Rode Hall. I didn’t take many photos of the buildings but these are pictures of one of the barns next to the car park.

This building we think was a shipon, a building with animals underneath and hay in hay loft above so the animals could be fed without having to ship it in. The hay also helped to insulate the lower floor.

The walls are brick built with lime rendered walls inside. I didn’t look closely at the bricks but you can tell their age by their size. Small thin ones are tudor. Larger ones are less old but still hand made and then you get machine made ones which usually have the makers name stamped on them in the dent on the top and bottom so they can take more mortar and hold together better.

I like the posh round windows under the eaves of the barn. You an tell someone had some money to build it.

These buildings are used for the farmers market at the hall which I think happens on the first Saturday of the month.

 

Sky, trapped.

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Your sky is trapped up high,

Below the stars you spy

Cerulean blues,

Ultramarine hues.

Tiles and bricks embrace

a pale blue face,

Reflecting windows catch the rays

of sunlight dappling through leaves.

No clouds can dampen your topaz sight.

slow shading to darkest night.

Trapped blue, without rain,

tomorrow shine out again.