Festival No 6, Portmeirion, North Wales

I’ve been at Festival Number 6 in Portmeirion, North Wales, this weekend. I was invited to run a couple of sketching workshops but in the end the weather was so bad that the second session on the Sunday was abandoned. Gales, heavy rain and destroyed tents put a bit of a downer on the closing day of the festival! Luckily we were staying in a cottage nearby – camping, glamping, boutique tipees and yurts etc, sadly, or not so sadly on this occasion in view of the weather, aren’t really for us – and we needed somewhere for our Jack Russell puppy to stay, as dogs weren’t allowed on the festival site.

beautiful Portmeirion
Central Piazza uncoloured

Portmeirion is an exquisite village built in the style of a classical Italianate Mediteranean town – allegedly Portofino, with stunning views over the adjacent estuary. It’s really rather a folly but just so pretty and a perfect location for an arts/ cultural festival. Lots of poetry, literature as well as mainstream acts (including Chic, Manic Street Preachers), and headlining act; the Brythoniaid Welsh Male voice choir. So a great sketching opportunity…and Saturday was perfect. A few people joined me sketching but the event had been organised at fairly last minute so whilst there was much enthusiasm, most people didn’t have sketching materials with them. This allowed me to have a leisurely day sketching in Portmeirion’s main Central Piazza. Over the course of the day I listened to two Manchester poets (anyone know John Cooper Clarke..?), a ukulele session with 40 people learning to use the ukulele for the first time, a meditation session as part of a world wide initiative (everyone in the audience was invited to meditate), a comedian, a brass band, a blue grass band, an author being interviewed, and the wonderful Brythoniaid Male voice choir finishing up on Saturday evening. 

Central Piazza with watercolour

Photographed with Central Piazza behind

I concentrated on this drawing of the Central Piazza, over the course of the day and also the complicated pen drawing which I didn’t get time to add watercolour too, seen above. I had high hopes for a big sketching day on Sunday and it’s disappointing that the weather put stop to it. Never mind…lots of sketching sessions planned in the next couple of months with our Manchester Urban Sketching Group. Here is this year’s official poster. Hopefully I’ll be back and more organised at next year’s festival…can’t recommend highly enough if anyone fancies joining me! http://www.festivalnumber6.com

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