In case you’re new here, I’ve sketched my surroundings as postcards when on holidays for the past twenty years, on and off. Over the past three months this changed to sitting on a bench in Peterborough, UK and sketching what passed me by. I’ve now done over fifty views from Peterborough benches and am gradually posting pictures of them here five at a time.
There’s lots of different fundraising activities that happen everywhere. Peterborough has a Zombie walk at the beginning of November. People dressed up in scary costumes scare me and it wouldn’t be my choice of days to go into town, yet here I was sat on a bench for over an hour waiting for some scary characters to pass me by.
Sketching an event as it passes is different from sketching people as they get on with their daily lives. I can’t explain it, I seem to put an expectation on myself as this is a one off, I’d have to wait a year to get this opportunity again. There were so many of them, they interact with me which made my self imposed task that much harder. Choosing the character and pose to capture’s done in an instant and the sketching of it’s almost as quick.
This sketch turned out much different from the last. The shops were boring to me and the zombies were taking more interest, particularly the scarier ones with more blood and sewn up mouths. The thing with having a vivid imagination is that it works.. I couldn’t relax sketching this one and the pressure mounted which, to me, shows and makes for a less accomplished drawing but this is my rapid interpretation of what passed me when I sat on a bench on 1 November 2014.
A chillier wetter day as the leaves, bobble hats and fully covered up waterproof covering on a motorised buggy appeared in my sketch.
I’ve no idea what others see when they look at this one. It’s done from a bench next to a roundabout and a cycle route. I’d been waiting for the right time to sketch from it and when the workmen tore up half of the pavement pushing the passers by to walk right past the bench I got very excited, as you do. The timing was right.
As you view this, imagine the cycle path behind you yet lots of cyclists went past in front of me regardless of how narrow the space was for them, people with pushchairs, people with luggage and my feet. There’s something not quite right at that part of town with the cycle path and with the works everything got bottle necked into one space and I tried to add it all.. More men with pushchairs passed me here than I usually notice. Sketching from this location, at this point in time, was a very different experience than I’ve been used to.
There are some benches which are never free, well rarely free, and since I’ve been prowling Peterborough’s benches for a few months now I’ve started to keep my eyes peeled for those cherished, well used, popular benches being available and grabbing one anytime I have my sketch bag with me. This was one of those times and this was done from a very popular bench outside a chippy.
Yes, I had haddock and chips before I sketched, why wouldn’t I?