With the courses during the week I just had the weekends to go somewhere to sketch. It was always difficult to decide where to go, in a city with so many things to see (and to draw!) My last weekend in London was fortunately sunny and warm, but unfortunately too short! :-(
On Friday I went to the pub with some of my coursemates after the last course day. The two women at the window were too concentrated in their conversation to notice me drawing them.
Royal Albert Hall: in my opinion, the best place in the world for concerts. Unfortunately there weren't any concert I wanted to see, so I stayed outside in the evening, sketching and running against the time... Fortunately I could "finish" it before it got dark.
Neals Yard, yes, again. I just love this small spot. Like always it rained a bit, but these lovely houses remained colourful.
This building from the great architect Norman Foster was quite near to my accomodation. It's called 30 St Mary Axe, but widely known informally as The Gherkin (previously as the Swiss Re Building). With so many buildings around it was almost impossible to find a place where I could see the whole Gherkin! The statue-doll looking like "Alice in the Wonderland" was a funny contast...
The London Bridge was also quite near to the accomodation, so even so touristy, I couldn't avoid sketching it in my last evening in town. With the red bus.
I was wrong. Neals Yard and the Covent Garden are not my favourite places in London. The Royal Botanic Gardens is definitely my favourite place in London. And my favourite park. My last Saturday in London I spent here.
This is the Palm House, the most important surviving Victorian iron and glas structure in the world.
The theme this summer at the Kew Gardens was spice. Everywhere spices... on a corner were parked two old timers selling food and drinks with spices. I couldn't resist to draw it!
Here is the University of the Arts London (UAL) Chelsea, where I was doing the courses, just beside the Tate Britain Museum. My daily lunch was basically only British food: John Contable, William Turner...
One of my favourites places in London is the Covent Garden area. Actually it is my favourite place in London. Beides theaters one find some special corners, alternative bars and restaurants, nice stores and very often cultural events.
Neals Yard is an absolutely charming small alley in Covent Garden with pretty colorful houses. One of them is a store for great natural products, called Neal's Yard Remedies.
The Denmark Street can be considered a historical place in London, at least when talking about music, more specific rock. For me a kind of time machine to the time when my favourite bands were popular. At the Regent Sounds had Rollings Stones recoreded their first album. Beatles had also recorded part of the Sargent Peppers there. Many other famous bands like The Who, the Kinks, the Yardbirs, Black Sabbath and so had been there too. Nowadays is another store more popular, the Hanks, this pretty red house here:
On Saturday was Covent Garden even more lively with the event "Spotlight: a free one day music, arts and comedy festival". On the Monmounth Street flowers were given, flags decorated the ways, good music were been playing, people were happy and I sit on a bench to sketch it.
It was great to meet the Urban Sketchers London last Sunday for their monthly Sketchcrawl at the Trafalgar Square. Katherine Tyrrell (first picture, left with blue shirt) did a real good job organising this meeting with so much people in a such crowded city like London.
My first sketch: The Mall (they closed the street, what was perfect!)
The Horse Parade with the London Eye at the background (one hour to sketch with a terrible cold wind!)
See more under: http://urbansketchers-london.blogspot.ch/
An untypical situation for someone used to draw people on the street (sadly mostly hidden!): drawing people posing to you. In one of the courses I did at the University of the Arts London (UAL) I had the opportunity to draw a model without the stress of finishing it fast or suddenly. Thank you Jeniffer for the patience!