Just outside the John Lewis store at London’s Oxford Circus, this lovely vintage girl’s bicycle was waiting to be sketched. No direct sunshine today, so no dynamic shadows, but you can’t have everything. Drawn with a Pentel MS50 black marker and painted with Quink ink with a brush on white cartridge.
Lovely sunny day today. Wisely, this guy followed a popular worldwide pastime of 'People Watching From A Cafe'. I’m a big believer too. he buzzed off after a while, so I had to use a pic from my mobile as ref. I added the white highlights back at work with a white Chinagraph. This was especially effective for doing the highlights on the black leather. The rest was painted with a brush and black ink and blue Quink ink. A lack of outlines in the background figures and a pale wash helps them recede, giving the sketch much depth.
Just a few metres down from yesterday's Bedford Square sketch, this is drawn from a meeting room window 4 floors up, giving me an interesting bird's eye viewpoint. The strong shadows cast by the sun made for interesting shapes, cast across the pavement. It's the first time I've tried wet ink by brush in this sketchbook and the low-quality paper is very poor at spreading the colour evenly, so next time perhaps at least I'll try it on more absorbent paper, such as a heavy cartridge or proper watercolour paper. Duration: 20mins Materials: Quink Blue-Black ink with brush on the usual sketchpad brown paper.
Lovely warm lunchtime today so I ambled round the corner from work and sketched this unique square. Bedford Square is the only intact Georgian square surviving in London and still has the original Georgian buildings and cast iron lamposts. I would have loved to have sketched from the gardens found in the centre of the square, but unfortunately (for sketchers at least), it's a residents-only private park. Materials: Fountain Pentel on brown paper Daler Rowney Cachet sketchbook. Duration: 30mins.
A 10 minute sketch of Emily who works at my agency, looking out of a boardroom window. Not a great likeness, but a fair effort in ten mins. Materials: Black Daler-Rowney sketching charcoal pencil and white drawing pencil.
This one's done from photographic reference, but I was so taken by the remarkable clarity of the reflected image, I wanted it to be revisited. It almost looks like a canalside sketch rather than a dip in the pavement, due to the way I gave it a tight crop. Depending on whether you're a 'glass half empty' or 'full' kind of person, I think you may interpret the shadowing figure behind the girl as either sinister or harmless. It could be the cover of a crime novel if you're of the former persuasion! What do you think? I like this one so much, I'll be putting it on my other painting and sketching blog (see side panel).Materials: Black, grey and white Daler-Rowney Sketching Charcoal on Cachet sketchbook paper Duration: 30 mins
A couple of builders take a break in Hanover Square gardens, just a few metres from a bustling Oxford Street. Duration: About 20 mins. Materials: Black Pentel Brushpen on Daler-Rowney Cachet (brown paper) sketchbook.
Office workers lunch amidst budding springtime plane trees. A gangly man in black in the background shows off his solo ball-handling skills, which was more of a dance than anything else. A bit like Tai-chi with a sphere. Duration: About 20 mins. Materials: Black Pentel Brushpen on Daler-Rowney Cachet (brown paper) sketchbook.
Please leave a comment below any post using the panel provided, or email petergander(at)gmail.com Thanks.
What's this all about?
Inspired by the worldwide sketching website, Urban Sketchers.com which I found on Flickr, I thought I'd put pencil to paper and get sketching in my lunch hour. Working in the West End of London gives me a wealth of drawing matter on my doorstep and whilst I am lucky enough to draw for a living every day (see About Me below), it's quite a different kettle of fish. The day job involves what we call in the trade 'scamps'. Simple drawings with messaging in one-stroke pen for advertising ideas and campaigns. Sketching in the street, however, offers quite a different pleasure. No brief to be answered and no client making unreasonable requests. It's all about the drawing. I will be experimenting with different mediums and substrates initially as I plan to find my favourite pen, brush, marker, pencil or paper, so check out the site later too. Thanks for looking, Peter Gander
Peter Gander (BA Hons) graduated from Canterbury College of Art to work in London as graphic designer and later as an art director. He lives in Herne bay, near Whitstable on north Kent's coast. During his commercial art career, which spans over 20 years, he lays claim to having re-designed the Monopoly logo to include 'Mr Moneybags' (still there to this day); winning an advertising D&AD Yellow pencil award for Spiller's Dog Food campaign featuring Dougal from The Magic Roundabout and having an award-winning cartoon featured on London's Underground as well as having his humorous poetry displayed for Londoner's by Friends of the Earth featured on London's iconic Routemaster buses.