Working so close to the Thames is a wonderful opportunity to draw some spectacular views. I should have produced more with so much inspiration around, especially as I cross Waterloo and Blackfriars bridges almost every day. However, I have only there three sketches to show for it.
In my defense I have made sketches of other stretches of the Thames, nearer to my home, but these will be part of another post.
This first sketch was made on a journey up to London Bridge. It was a really hot spring morning and I had to find shade, a view that inspired me and a place to sit down without being in the way. I walked a stretch of the north Embankment from London Bridge towards Tower Bridge but there was no shade. There was a great view of HMS Belfast from London Bridge but again no shade and full of tourists. The south bank was even busier but I found this view on a seat set back from the main walkway. After the main drawing I added some simple washes to the Tower of London but then it started to rain. I packed away and went to a Tango lesson in Southwark at the Tango Club. The painting was polished off at home a week later but I decided to keep the colour to just the distance as I felt adding more to the foreground would make it too busy.
This view is of HMS President. I walked to the Thames from work on anther hot spring day. The spot gave me a great view of the ship and bridge plus the base of the lamppost. I made the line drawing in my small sketchbook on two visits and kept it without colour for some time. It was quite daunting to paint the river but I jumped in about a month later and I’m happy with the result. The Shard was in the background but I decided to keep it simple this time. I have danced Tango on HMS President. Its a great afternoon event and worth visiting. The dance floor is interesting as there is a definite camber each end.
Also from my small sketchbook is this panorama of the London skyline from the South Bank. On a lovely clear evening in June I was walking to Waterloo when I saw this pier and view. I was just starting a week off from work and I felt I could spend an hour sketching the view. Again the line work was done in situ and I laid the washes a couple of days later when I had more time. As I painted there was an Oompah band on stilts playing close by. It was gentle company and kept a lot of the tourists away from my precious spot.
As an addition to this post I have included this drawing of Albert Bridge. I entered the Pintar Rapido 2014 and was on a location finding day. I started along the Chelsea embankment and found a handy bench overlooking Albert Bridge.
It was a very hot day and there was a lot of road traffic behind me. However, I sketched this in about an hour before heading off to find other locations.