City Barbers

To the right of where I was standing there is a new glass, dark brick and steel building by RMJM architects. The rest of my view is old Glasgow: the shearing shed that is city barbers with all its sports memorabilia, the graffiti and the glazed white brick of the Glaswegian rear elevation. I like […]

come fly with me

Happy New Year Urban Sketchers! This should be a fun and sketchtastic year. To round off 2010 I subjected myself to a couple of ten-hour-plus ordeals called ‘flying across the Atlantic’. I hate flying, I’m not a fan of airports, I hate the stress of ever-decreasing baggage allowances, I hate those little plastic pots of […]

The three horse race

It has been a very modern election – American even – what with the TV debates. The lamp-posters, not allowed until the final week, potentially tell us a lot about the parties: the Lib-Dems do not appear on this lamp-post, perhaps sabotaged? Other sites suggested they had the highest ladders. The Greens have a simple […]

The Tyne

Northumberland is just into England and has Hadrian’s old Roman border running it’s width. We visited Hexham on Sunday – an old market town with traditional brick buildings and the odd flash of Sandstone – I drew this pub because of its odd proportions. After Hexham we drove into the Toon (Newcastle) where I got […]

Carnival Season

I only had 10 minutes or so to sketch, so J. dropped me off opposite the carnival with my journal and a purple pen–I drew FAST. Color was added later, creatively–

lock stock

The pollen count is high, so I’ve been keeping sketching outside to a minimum lately. which is frystrating. So I braved the itchy eyes and cycled down to 3rd Street where I drew the locksmith’s. That’s the key. I was going to call this post ‘Lock Stock and Two Runny Nostrils’ but decided against it. […]


We’re not in Kirkwall 5 hours but I’m awake. I stumble about in my pants trying to find light switches and a glass for water. Eventually I go outside and switch the lights off. I’m a bit disorientated and stand gazing at the distant horizon. After a minute or so I make out an odd […]

The source of the smell

The west side of Edinburgh always has a thick, hoppy smell about it and the source is only a mile from my house – Caledonian Brewery. When I was a kid we used to drive to my Gran’s and the smell would lie thick in my nostrils as we hit the city limits. I now […]

Advocates Close

The north-facing closes (lanes) that hang off the High Street frame their views beautifully. In the centre-distance, you can even see another county across the water. And so why Edinburgh is a very appealing place to be.