Tonight’s sketches.

These are the best of the bunch of sketches I did at the Beehive pub in Honeywall tonight. Some of the others were not too bad, but when you are trying to draw moving people it is difficult to get enough information down rapidly enough. That was what happened with the other ones – I was not speedy enough.

One image I do want to get is my friend Kate playing the trombone. It’s a wonderful sound in a small pub. I’m also in love with the gleam and reflections on it. Next month I will try and get closer and do a better drawing if I can.

These drawings were done in a Seawhite of Brighton Plein Air Sketchbook size A5 with watercolour paper. Using a Bic grip roller black roller ball pen.

Trentham lake

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I painted this out in the open air a couple of years ago. It took a couple of hours to paint. As you can see the day was very overcast. This is a small acrylic on canvas. I don’t actually know where it is. I have a feeling that I sold it?

I’ve painted from this position a few times, looking down the lake towards the Italian Gardens at Trentham. The end of the lake at this end is next to Trentham monkey forest where they have two troops of macaque monkeys.

I hope to go back soon and try and draw some of them. They are beautiful animals and they are so cute when they are babies.

In the meantime I’m feeling a bit better so over the next few weeks I will try and get some new paintings done.

X

Nothing

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Couldn’t resist posting this photo.

On this site sept. 5, 1782 Nothing happened.

The day before had been busy, barges were loaded with pottery to take away on the canal, horses pulling the barges to distant towns along the trent and mersey canal…. . Seven days earlier a load of clay and ground flint had arrived. The pottery has been thrown on wheels or cast in slip. Then into the kilns so that they could be fired biscuit hard. The paintresses had decorated each pot with beautiful designs. These were the pots that were spreading out over the land now.

But today nothing happened.

Mable smiled at  Jeremiah, he smiled back, but nothing happened. Mabels father was not approving of Jeremiah, he was only a lowly saggar makers bottom knocker, making the bases for saggars. These were the pottery cases that fine pottery and china was fired in to protect it from the smoke from the coal. Jeremiah had no prospects. He was younger than Mable. She was the owners daughter.

All she could do was smile. All she could do was hope things would change. But today …

Nothing happened.

Maybe one day it would ..

Fairies

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I saw lits of fairies made of wire at a place called Trentham Gardens recently.

I was intrigued by them so when I saw a wire weaving kit to make a small one I decided to get it. I opened the box to find a small mackette of a figure and three thickness of wire together with some pliers.

I’m nervous of even starting! There are apparently YouTube videos to help but I’m not sure what I will end up making. I’m better at painting in two dimensions than creating in three. Wish me luck!

Photo walk

About 5 years ago we went on a photo walk around the north of the city of Stoke on Trent in a town called Tunstall. The idea was to do a circular walk encompassing greenways around the town that used to have a rail line and that runs between terraced houses on a raised path. There are bridges over paths and tunnels driven through the ground.

I used my old phone so the images are not brilliant. The day started overcast then it started to snow as we walked along the path. We came out onto the side of a newly built section of road then followed the path round up a hill before coming out at an old pub (can’t remember it’s name) where we stopped off for lunch and sat next to a real coal fire to warm up. Then off through local streets to finish near where we started outside the local health centre.

Photos include trees, train signals, walking along the path. A terraced house. The corrugated side of one of the tunnels. One of the metal greenaway signs, a dandelion growing on the side wall of part of the path, and bracket fungus growing on an old wooden post.

I’m hoping to go on another photo walk, may be when the weather is a bit better. The idea of looking at industrial and post industrial landscapes fascinates me.

Spode pots

Spode heritage Centre is closed at the moment because they are choosing photos for the 3 counties open photography exhibition. I had a quick glance as I was meeting the man in charge of the space to make arrangements for a show I’m holding there in May/June this year.

I have some paintings ready, but I might use photos from the Spode shop as inspirations for new paintings. I’ve been doing a lot of Blue and white work and the ceramics there are very striking. I also like looking through cabinets or windows to the view beyond. Using them to frame the subject.

Anyway my suggestion for today for you is “stay curious!”.

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.