Saturday, 25 September 2010

Ridley Road market: 25 September 2010

 Ridley Road market from the point of view of my feet

Since I was in Dalston I decided to do some food shopping before going home. I could have bought some stuff in Ridley Road market but didn't feel up to choosing which stalls to patronise and which to ignore so I took the easy option and headed to the supermarket instead.

Here's a drawing I made last year of my impressions of Ridley Road market. I was commissioned to do it as a Christmas card which was sent out to 45,000 people in north Hackney. Hackney is multi racial and multi religious so I was keen to avoid any obvious Christian references and focused on the celebration of food instead. I like it but I've no idea what the 45,000 recipients thought of it.

View of the City of London: 25 September 2010

Having left Dalston Kingsland station (to give its full name) I strolled down the road to a noodle bar for some lunch and saw this view of the City of London from Kingsland Road. It is a common mistake, and one I make routinely, of thinking of London as being completely flat. From where I was standing this view was distinctly looking down hill.

Dalston Kingsland: 25 September 2010

Moving on to Dalston now and I didn't expect to go through a small tunnel like structure when everything became quite dark. This is illogical because the station is underneath a road and so I should expect it to get darker. I've been wanting for a while to do a drawing that was mostly black ink. I did this using Parker Quink black ink. When I applied it to the paper it appeared to be blue/black and then dried a rusty brown. I've been assured it will go darker in time.

This is a very busy station and just as I was getting up to leave a young man sat next to me wearing regulation headphones and, lo and behold, opened a sketchbook which is exactly like one I own and began doing a quick drawing of a man sitting on a bench on the opposite platform. I would have engaged him in a chat if he hadn't made it very clear that conversation wasn't an option. I must admit that's exactly what I do so I can't complain when others do it too. Anyway I enjoyed seeing someone else doing the same as me because it made me feel I'm part of some underground movement.

Friday, 17 September 2010

A brief pause in Hackney: 17 September 2010

I decided it would be nice to pause in Hackney briefly before moving on to Dalston. I enjoyed lunch at a noodle bar in Morning Lane and then sauntered over to the Town Hall in the afternoon sunshine and this view is part of its small, formal front garden.

I thought I would have a go at the dip pen again this time and, being very daring, used two nibs of different widths and  a Chinese caligraphy brush to paint the grass.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Arriving in Hackney Central: 11 September 2010

This is what took my fancy when I arrived at Hackney Central. I seemed to have the station entirely to myself.

Looking back: 11 September 2010

I returned to Homerton today and before I got on the train to travel one stop to Hackney Central I took the opportunity to look back towards Hackney Wick.

From where I was sitting the view looked oddly rural which is an illusion since London is entirely man-made and generally very built up. But then again London is just a very large collection of towns and villages that have merged over the years so it's not really that suprising when a glimpse of a rural scene pops up. I wonder how many more I will see on this journey.

I chose to use a dip pen for this drawing. I haven't used one of these for years and I really love the wonky lines, scratches in the paper and the very prominent blob of ink in the foreground. It's tricky working out how much ink to leave in the reservoir and this is what can happen when there's too much!

The last time I was at Homerton I had to work with the thumping noise of a construction site going on in the background. This time, being the weekend, it was blessedly quiet and all I could hear were ordinary domestic sounds overlaid with some jazz music coming from one of the flats near the station. Lovely.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Homerton Station: 3 September 2010

I travelled one stop from Hackney Wick to Homerton station on a beautiful sunny morning and then drew this picture. I left the train, stepped on to the platform and there was a seat right in front of me so I chose to work from that one.

By following my rule of drawing whatever I can see in front of me I ended up with this view facing north. There is a lot of building work going on immediately around the station so my time there was accompanied by some spectacular noise and in addition I was surprised by the number of freight trains that were thundering through the station.

This station is the closest one to where I live so from here on I will be moving further away from the safety of familiar territory. Incidentally, the photo at the top of this blog is of Homerton station.