Saturday, 9 February 2019

Royal Opera House 26 February

The next outing is set for Tuesday 26 February 2019 to the Royal Opera House. The public spaces for the Opera House are now open from 10 am and there are of course loos and cafes. We will meet just inside the entrance from Covent Garden itself, on the North East corner of the market square. I suggest we meet inside as it will still probably be cold. There is a cafe just inside the entrance, which can be our lunch venue. The public spaces in the Opera House including the old Floral Hall are very impressive and there is a roof terrace with a view over the market roof tops for the hardy as the terrace is not enclosed. We meet at 11 am, my mobile for the day is 07815 772857. 

The nearest tube is Covent Garden but this should be an easy venue to find.

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

29 January: sketching at the Temple Church

Thirteen artists braved the freezing cold to go to the Temple Church to draw. It was lovely and warm as well as being very historic with its connections to the Knights Templar and the tombs of the Marshall family, who were Earls of Pembroke and very influential in the reigns of Kings Richard II and John.

The church was full of atmosphere. Parts of the original Norman round church still remain though there have been several enlargements and rebuilding. The tall windows have splendidly colourful stained glass, though this was Victorian as English stained glass tends to be. We had a refreshing lunch in Zest, a vegetarian restaurant and then back to work.

There was an amazing selection of Art produced by Art in the Parkers. My apologies for my photography which does not do the work justice. I am also working on improving the layout for the pictures.

The next outing will be to Covent Garden opera house where there are accessible public spaces and a good view over the market rooftops. The date will be published on this blog.

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Tuesday 29 January: Sketch Day in the Temple Church, Middle Temple Lane, London EC4Y 7BB

We are going to make our first visit to the historic Temple Church, between Fleet Street and the River Thames. Built by the Knights Templar in the late twelfth century as their English headquarters, the building has a rare circular nave (possibly unique to the Templars in England, this has not been checked by your Ed) and effigies of various knights on the floor. Also other examples of ancient sculpture work, faces in vignette, etc. Hopefully all gorgeous for our art, with both indoor and outdoor sketching potential. A real treat. Further details and photos here:

As usual, we will gather at 11, sketch, and go outside somewhere for lunch. If nowhere better presents itself, there is Zest, (vegetarian restaurant)  .  We can come back and continue until the Church closes at 4. There is a loo in the Church.

The Verger kindly said that there would be no charge for us to come, but it would be nice if everyone could put something in the donation box. More info and directions  here 

The nearest underground station is Temple on the District and Circles lines, it seems easiest to go along the Embankment, and cut in northwards to the Church.

There are seats in the Church, but as always we suggest you bring your sketching stools so that you can position yourself in exactly the right place for your composition.

We look forward to seeing many of you on the 29th. Sue’s telephone number for the day is: 07975 864142

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

11 December 2018: Sketching at the Imperial War Museum

There were ten of us at the Imperial War Museum on 11 December. Surprisingly accessible from North London, and quite a contrast to our normal locations. The building is very impressive externally, and some of us tackled this. Others had a go at the curved glasswork on the top floor. Most people, however, got to grips with the complicated wartime machines, the dramatic suspended planes in particular.   We familiarised ourselves with the Spitfire, the German V2 flying bomb, and the Harrier jet (a contemporary item).  One of us produced an aluminium foil three-dimensional interpretation of a crushed tank, highly imaginative, and the product of a preliminary recce. Someone else was interested in the minutiae of wartime impedimenta, tried out some of the items in person, and took a selfie as a blitz-lit ARP warden.

As it was mid-week, the Museum was not crowded, a great blessing. We understand that it is going to be rearranged to feature the second world war more strongly, as next year is the anniversary of the outbreak of that ghastly business, so new sketching opportunities will present themselves before long.

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Next Sketch Day will be Tuesday 11 December at the Imperial War Museum, Lambeth

Our next sketch day will be to the Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Rd, London SE1 6HZ.    This is appropriate as we have just passed the centenary of the ending of the Great War, but in fact the most spectacular display in the main hall features  second world war aircraft, which can be sketched from below and above.   There are various exhibitions  and displays dealing with the Great War (and a very fine collection of wartime paintings, if anyone feels like not sketching themselves).  Lots of machinery, and people to sketch.   The building is pretty spectacular if you can deal with the cold.   More details:

A previous visit with the London Urban Sketchers a year ago resulted in the following pictures which give an idea of some possibilities both internal and external:

There are no restrictions as to art materials, but bring a stool so that you can sit down at the view you want.

Meet at 11am in the main hall (go in the main door, and down some steps to the aircraft in the middle).   CafĂ©, loos, all available, and should be relatively empty as it will be a weekday in term time. 
The nearest tube station is Lambeth North, on the Bakerloo line.   Full directions can be found here

Sue's telephone number for the day is 07975 864142, we look forward to seeing everyone.

Friday, 9 November 2018

Day out at the Crossrail Place Roof Garden, Canary Wharf, 6 November

The Crossrail Place Roof Garden was a totally new environment for 13 Art in the Park sketchers last Tuesday.  An up-to-the-minute architectural structure with the partially glazed roofing, no doubt having won various awards, and a very smart garden design below.   We were particularly taken by a number of structural plants, including huge black spidery plants (unfortunately your editor was unable to identify these from home), tree ferns  and a very fine japanese maple in stunning autumn colour.   "The geographic location of the site – directly north of Greenwich – places the docks virtually on the Prime Meridian, dividing the western and eastern hemispheres. This positioning inspired the planting division of the gardens into two geographic zones. Plants from the Western hemisphere such as ferns and Sweet Gum are on the west side of the Meridian line, with Asian plants such as bamboos, magnolias and maples on the east side. The semi-permeable canopy structure enclosing the garden helped to create a localised microclimate allowing the use of more sensitive and rare species of plants."   A list of the most prominent plants can be found here:   We were pleased to see a blackbird and an empty nest, indicating that some wildlife had found its way across the acres of Canary Wharf's tower blocks and general concrete into a new safe environment. 

Apart from the plants, we found other subjects of interest:  one of us sketched the extraordinary design of the  Crossrail station from outside, others some of the people visiting the garden (a surprising number of young mothers with buggies), and there was a dressed up piano, a WW1 remembrance art installation, and various pieces of statuary.

There was also a very satisfactory lunch facility, known as the Food Robot, a vast hanger with various street food stalls, including a far eastern one, to go with the theme of the garden.   The Food Robot not only had large empty tables (with unfortunately screwed down stools) but was interesting artistically itself, and makes the whole place a viable winter venue for us at another time.