Saturday, 12 April 2014

Visit my new-look website

My website has been spruced up and updated, with more links, new images and a design that echoes this blog. My thanks to Colin Bowling for this. 

Saturday, 29 March 2014

On show with Urban Sketchers London

The Timberyard hang

I have four drawings in a group show of work by London's Urban Sketchers at Timberyard cafe, Old Street, London, until the end of June. Thomas Corrie, Isabelle Laliberté, Jhih-Ren Shih, Katherine Tyrrell and Zhenia Vasliev are co-exhibitors at the cafe, which is a popular place for freelancers and e-workers to settle in for the day. That may well be where you are as you read this. The coffee is good, isn't it?

Timberyard, 61-67 Old Street, London EC1V 9HW
29 March-30 June
Open Monday to Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am-6pm

Friday, 21 March 2014

Drawing Jay Scott and the Find

I spent an enjoyable evening last night at a gig by Jay Scott and the Find at the Underbelly, Hoxton Square, where we'd been invited to draw by the band's management. This is not my usual choice of subject; as with drawing in the BBC studios in January, it was a challenge to draw a scene that wouldn't usually get me reaching for the marker pen, but that is no reason to back down. The low and changing light levels, the liveliness of the audience, and perplexing problem of drawing while holding a bottle of beer all contributed to the outcome.

Our thanks to Jay Scott and the Find, who have a new album out soon.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Coming home on the M4

Last weekend we drove down to Devon to meet up with old friends to remember and celebrate the life and times of Jonathan Young, who had been a good mate since we met at school in 1972. He died from a heart attack in Italy last November, where he had lived in beautiful rural seclusion with his wife and five children for several years.
The reunion, of around 40 of us in the back room of a pub where we were refreshed by beer and curry as JY would have wanted, brought together people we hadn't seen for more than 30 years, and a feast of unrestrained nostalgia for what really were good times. I won't go on about what a kind, funny, lovely man he was, or about how much he is missed by his family and friends, but understand how true this is.
I drew this as N drove us back home to London along the M4 motorway as we dwelt on the weekend and our memories of him.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Lisbon nights

We grab a few days away over the school break, and travel to the coast of Portugal and then south to Lisbon. I've been given a set of four warm grey double-pointed Promarker pens, and am still not sure how to use them to best effect.
This view of the square at Rossio from across the road from our hotel one evening (while the others slept, read and revised) is a case of trying to find out how I can use them with the black pens that go everywhere with me. That feeling of now knowing quite what you're doing can be an enjoyable one. Which pen do I reach for when I put another down? What makes things go forward and back? When to use the chisel point or the bullet point? How much tonal range is needed? Which restaurant are we eating at tonight?

Monday, 24 February 2014

Who's in Sketch Your World?

The works of more than 60 international artists are included in Sketch Your World: illustrators, architects, students, painters, film-makers, printmakers, Oscar-winning animators, senior citizens, lecturers, reportage artists and people who just like to draw in sketchbooks. Here's a complete list, with links to the websites of those who have them:

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Inma Serrano and Caroline Johnson in Sketch Your World

Thanks to people for their kind messages and reviews of Sketch Your World, now out in bookshops. It's available at the usual online stores and high street bookshops, including Waterstones and Barnes & Noble.
Here are drawings by Inma Serrano and Caroline Johnson (and a smaller one by me) included in the book. I'll be posting more about the 60 different artists whose work is included in the book over the coming weeks.
You can find out more about the book at or follow me on Twitter @jameshobbsart.