Wednesday, 29 May 2013


After our week with Mum we took her home to Reigate and went on to our favourite camp not far away at Alderstead Heath.  It's only half a mile or so from the junction of the M25 and M23 and although you can hear the traffic in the distance you're in beautiful countryside on top of the North Downs.
The camp is surrounded with bluebell woods which at this time of year are at their fragrant best.  The edges are laced with forget-me-nots and primroses and the grass is bright green.
There is a wonderful mixture of trees all around and in between the pitches so the eye always has something special to look at.  The Caravan club take a lot of care over the maintenance of the site and their efforts are well rewarded with these beautiful vistas.
We always go to the same plot if we can as there's space to sit on the grass near the silver birches and we have this wonderful view through our front window.

Monday, 27 May 2013


The caravan site at Hoburne Park, Christchurch had many 'mobile homes' with a few trees dotted about, many of which had been pollarded like this one next to our deck.  I liked the contrast of the bare branches against the blue sky.
This is a dreadful sketch of the caravans, decidedly wonky, it must have been drawn after one of our good lunches!  I used the white marker and a sepia brush pen.
There were lots of birds in the park but mainly pigeons which woke us up early with their cooing!

Saturday, 25 May 2013


When we were at Christchurch, Ivor and Janet were staying nearby on another campsite and they came to visit on Sunday afternoon with their dogs who were exhausted after a long walk in the New Forest.
The camp we were on did not permit dogs in the caravans so we sat on our deck trying to keep warm in the breezy sunshine!
A few days later and it did get warm enough to doze in the sun!  This is drawn using a white marker pen, I quite like the effect of only drawing the parts touched by the sun.
Mum got the white pen treatment too!
Had a bit of fun drawing them while they watched a quiz on TV, there's something not quite right about Bob's head though.  But what looks of concentration!

Thursday, 23 May 2013


I made a new sketchbook with mixed shades of mi-tientes paper as a complete change from my usual plain watercolour paper books.  I wanted to challenge myself to try a different way of drawing and using different media.
The first sketch is a view through our lounge window where I can see the white sloe blossom highlighted against the dark background of the bank behind it. I used a white pigment pen and a Pitt sepia pen only.
On April 27th we arrived at the static caravan we had rented for a week to give Mum a holiday so I had the opportunity to do lots of drawings while she was relaxing.  There were many tall pine trees in the park so I picked a sprig to draw here in coloured pencil.
This twig from a flowering laurel was also in coloured pencil but the writing is a calligraphy pen, which I don't think I like very much!
I can't seem to drop those crayons but I do like the effect of the white pencil on the darker background.

Sunday, 19 May 2013


We set off for our annual trip to England on April 25th on a Brittany Ferry from St Malo at 10 am. 
I drew this sketch as we passed between the rocks on our way out of the harbour.
The crossing takes about 8 hours so I had plenty of time to sketch as we cruised along.  The ferry is decorated with many drawings of Breton life and culture done in charcoal which I found very interesting for their looseness and individuality.  This one was next to our table in the bar where we took our coffee.
We landed in the evening and after a couple of nights at Hamble where we saw Christopher and went to Southampton to shop and have our eye tests we went on to Christchurch.  We had booked a week in a static caravan so that Mum could come to stay for a holiday with us as she's no longer able to fly to France.
We were blessed with the first whole week of sunshine of the year and were able to get out and about on the local buses to visit Christchurch and Southbourne where I had spent several summer holidays as a child.
It was very interesting to see the line of beach huts still along the promenade as I remembered them although there were only a few pensioners and dog walkers about unlike my old photo from August 1953 when the place was crowded with holidaymakers.
This is my Mum pushing Rosi in the pram with Chris on the left and me on her right.  My Granny had a beach hut which we used every time we went there for changing in, making tea on the gas ring and storing all the buckets and spades and deckchairs.  I can still smell the special odour of gas burning and old wood and seashells if I close my eyes!