Sketching Churches

Sketches of St Giles Cripplegate

This week I’ve been working through the exercises from lesson 1 of Liz Steel‘s online course, SketchingNow Buildings. We’ve been exploring a few different ways of improving our observational skills, starting off with some indoor work using photos, before heading outside to sketch a building ‘in real life’, in this case a local church.

I found this a challenge for a number of reasons. First of all, the place where I’d planned  to go and sketch was in full sun under a cloudless sky, which sounds great but I ended up getting too hot and uncomfortable to be able to carry on sketching. So I abandoned that attempt, avoided sun burn, and found some shade near St Giles Cripplegate church instead.

Second of all, I found that I kept running out of space on the page, in spite of using paper that is 11 x 14 inches (much bigger than I usually use). But I’ve had a few tips from various people (including Liz) so this is something I’m going to work on.

The third challenge was that half way through doing these exercises I noticed there were quite a few little insects crawling around on the ground where I was sitting, which was annoying, but by the time I’d noticed I decided just to stick it out. One or two did get squashed in my sketchbook, though, which was a bit gross.

However, creepy crawlies and blazing sun aside, I’m glad that this course is challenging because I’ve already learned a lot and we’re only one week in. It’s great to see what everyone else is producing, and to discuss the things we’re enjoying and what we’ve found difficult.

None of these sketches is really a ‘finished drawing’ but they’re useful concepts to keep working on, and because I tend to get bogged down in the details, these exercises have allowed me to start loosening up my sketching style a little bit already.

Now on to lesson 2!



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