Friday 22 May 2015

Fairy nice!

It’s not just the Chelsea Flower Show that has all the best greenery at the moment.  This beautiful walled garden is a few minutes walk from the centre of Croydon in Park Hill Park and is maintained by volunteers from the local community.  
The ‘castle’ you can see in the background is actually a water tower built during the 19th century to serve the large increase in the town’s population.
As the population expands in the 21st century too, there are more new shoots sprouting up near the station on Cherry Orchard Road in the form of new blocks of flats.  Or as they always seem to be known these days - luxury apartments.

Park Hill Park is hosting a ‘Flower Fairies Festival’ this summer celebrating the work of artist Cicely Mary Barker who created the original books and grew up in the Croydon area.  More details at


Wednesday 20 May 2015

Jerwood Drawing Prize 2015 - Call for Entries

If you like drawing you may be interested in the Jerwood Drawing Prize 2015.
  • This is the poster for their call for entries. 
  • There is a First Prize of £8,000, a Second Prize of £5,000 and two Student Awards of £2,000 each. 
  • Entry is online. You can submit three entries - and fees are discounted for students. 
  • Deadline for entries is 5pm on 26 June 2015
  • Entry is open to all artists resident in the UK.
Further information can be found:


Monday 18 May 2015

Palm Houses and Pagodas on a sunny sketching day at Kew Gardens

Sketches and London Urban Sketchers at the end of the day 
on the steps outside the Palm House at Kew Gardens
Right click this to see an even larger version in the lightbox
A great time was had by all at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew on Saturday. We had blue skies and sunshine from the start and it gradually warmed up to the point where serious consideration was given to sun screen!

The general consensus was Kew Gardens was a really great place to sketch and very different from the normal places we go for urban sketching.  The buildings are a bit different for starters plus there's a few more trees than usual!

It was also fabulous to welcome people who had travelled a long distance to be at our sketchcrawl to draw Kew Gardens. We had people from Northamptonshire, Cambridge and Eastbourne - as well as a chap who hails from Iceland and a lady who got to Kew from Portland Oregon via Barcelona!

Here's some photos of the day - of sketches and sketchers - and an awful lot of Palm Houses and Pagodas!

Sketches and London Urban Sketchers at lunchtime
on the terrace outsideThe Orangery at Kew Gardens
Right click this to see an even larger version in the Lightbox
These are some of the morning's sketches

Group of morning sketches at lunchtime outside the Orangery
Right click this to see an even larger version in the lightbox
These are the sketches of the Pagodas from the morning

Sketches of the Pagoda at Kew Gardens
These are sketches of the Palm House

Sketches of the Palm House and other glass houses
This was the group at lunchtime.  Not everybody was here because it can take a long time walking from one place to another Kew Gardens!

These are the group sketches at the end

Sketches outside the Palm House at the end of the day.
....and you can see the group at the end of the day - in front of the Palm House - in the first image of this post.

It was great to introduce Kew Gardens to people for whom this was the first visit - and I think Kew Gardens had some new 'Friends' by the end of the day.

Do please upload your sketches to:

and finally......

Sangeeta got retweeted by Kew Gardens!  Now that's the power of Twitter!

Next Month - June 2015 - we're in Hampstead

Keep an eye on the blog - this is the Sketchcrawl Page and the link to the blog post about it will be announced in the note at the top of the right hand column when the date is announced.