Monday, 10 February 2020

Tuesday 3rd March: Southwark Cathedral, London Bridge, SE1 9DA

On Tuesday 3rd March we are going to make our first visit to Southwark Cathedral, that well-known landmark close to London Bridge Station. Southwark Cathedral is of mixed ages, from 1100 onwards, but everything hangs together in a gothic style. There are forests of pillars, various carved screens and porticos, assorted funerary statuary and monuments, and stained glass. We will find that there are all sorts of unexpected treasures to sketch. The Cathedral, despite being incredibly close to a railway viaduct, has a small herb garden and some outside space and people might want to sketch outside. More details here:

We will meet at 11 o'clock as usual, we suggest that people go into the main body of the cathedral where we should all be visible at the start. The Cathedral Office have asked us to be mindful of and work around a couple of school groups which are booked in throughout the day, and also of private worship in the Harvard Chapel and midday prayer and Communion (not sure where this takes place). We have said that we are happy to put contributions into the donations box, as there is no entry charge, so please would you remember to bring something appropriate.

There is a cafe where we will have lunch, and it also appears that on Tuesdays in the afternoon they have a free concert(with retiring collection), so we may also get some music and musicians.

Directions can be found here:

As usual, we suggest that you bring your sketching stools so that you have every choice for your composition. We look forward to a happy and successful day of art in the Cathedral. Sue's telephone number for the day is:07975 864142.

Thursday, 30 January 2020

January Outing to the Wallace Collection

January's outing was to the Wallace Collection in Manchester Square.
12 people attended in total, although one forgot her glasses and another was distracted by the church (Spanish Place) on the way there and arrived at lunchtime.
The collection is of course superb and our artists benefitted from this by sketching from the pictures and of course the armour.

Some people managed to go to the special exhibition of water colours commissioned by the East India company, again a magnificent display.

The cafe in the courtyard was rather crowded, not helped by a block booking for a later cream tea, but some of us managed to get tables, where we were able to exchange gossip and of course sketching tips.

Altogether a good winter outing.

The next outing is to Southwark Cathedral on Tuesday 3 March. More details to follow.

Friday, 3 January 2020

January 2020 Outing

January's outing is on Tuesday 28 January from 11 am and is to the Wallace Collection in Manchester Square. Meet initially in the entrance. There is a spectacular central atrium, a multifarious collection of paintings, porcelain and furniture, long views through galleries and even an armoury display. All collected by the Marquesses of Hertford and Richard Wallace during the C18th and C19th and ultimately bequeathed to the nation together with Hertford House, their London Mansion. The free displays includes a Rembrandt, a Rubens and a Frans Hals as well as works by Fragonard and Boucher.

Entry to the Wallace Collection is free.

The current exhibition is 'Forgotten Masters: Indian Painting for the East India Company". This is a paying exhibition (Adult £12 without donation, Concession £9 without donation) but there are excellent water colours depicting Indian plants, animals and life in the Raj.

The address is Hertford House, Manchester Square, London W1U 3BN and the nearest tubes are Bond Street, Baker Street and Oxford Circus, not to mention the Oxford Street buses.

The cafe/restaurant is run by Peyton and Byrne is in the atrium. There are some 'affordable' options but this is not Smithfield Market workers' cafe prices.

The website for the Wallace Collection is

Janet's number for the day is 07815 772857 and Sue's is 07975 864142

Hertford House
 ester Square
London W1U 3BNHertford House
Manchester Square
London W1U 3BN

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Visit to Leadenhall Market, City of London, on Tuesday 3 December 2019

This was Art in the Park's second visit to Leadenhall Market, and on this chilly December day only six hardy souls turned up to sketch its monumental Victoriana. However, we did have a nice time and produced lots of good and varied work. We were hoping for superior Christmas decorations to place amongst the architectural motifs, etc., but felt rather let down. There was a big Christmas tree in the central square of the Market, but its decorations were rather discreet, even muted. (A reflection of current trading and political circumstances, perhaps?) However, the tree did provide a good tall central feature to juxtapose against the regular classical features of the building, and many of us included it in our work. Other decorations were either rather small, or, as was the case of a huge pair of hands hanging from the ceiling, both difficult to include in a painting and rather odd. So no huge silver reindeer leaping across the facades which your editor was hoping for. While some of us painted in the arcades, sensible people went into a cafe and operated in the warmth, and the afternoon shift found a convenient counter to sit on beside a window in a nearly empty Leon.

The place was not crowded,except for the lunch hour, when all indoor seats got taken by city people, so once again we nipped off round the corner to The Grapes pub, and had a cosy lunch upstairs.

Our next outing will be in January, and as we may or may not post the details of this presently unformulated event by the holiday period, now seems the moment to wish all Art in the Park participants a happy Christmas, and a relaxing break. We will look forward to seeing you all in the New Year.

Saturday, 23 November 2019

Visit to St Bartholemew the Great, Smithfield, on Tuesday 19 November 2019

This was Art in the Park's second visit to the stunning St Bartholemew the Great so some of the sixteen sketchers who turned up on a grey November day knew what to expect. Most people focussed on the arches (mainly Norman, of course, in this historic location), but some picked out cameos from the monuments and the artwork, which includes a golden statue by Damian Hirst. The Church was rather dark, with daylight coming in from the upper windows, and with patches of golden light at ground level giving interesting effects. In the afternoon the daylight faded rapidly and the interior became very dark and cavernous. We very much appreciated the opportunity to sketch in such an antique building.

The weather was unfortunately too cold to sketch outside, but there were interesting possibilities outside for another time.

December Outing to Leadenhall Market

We meet at 11 am on Tuesday 3 December for our December outing to Leadenhall Market, hopeful that there will be some Christmas spirit and decorations.

We have previously visited Leadenhall Market in October 2018 and there is a post on the blog. Although it is undercover it is cold so wrap up warm and bring sketching stools.

Meet under the central Rotunda. Janet's number for the day is 07815 772857.

Leadenhall Market dates back to the 14th century although the present building is Victorian, and features in the Harry Potter films as Diagon Alley.

The address is Leadenhall Market, Gracechurch St, Langbourn, London EC3V 1LT. As it is in the City there are plenty of buses and underground stations. The website is

Sunday, 13 October 2019

Manor Gardens Library

On 5 October we responded to an invitation to sketch at Manor Gardens Library and there was a good turn out.
Unfortunately I didn't take pictures of our work, but if participants would like to email images to me at I will publish them on the blog.

I finally have two pictures to upload. Better late than never, any more always welcome