Friday, August 31, 2012

The Velodrome

Named by some as ‘the Pringle’ due to the shape of its roof, the velodrome in the Olympic Park is one of the permanent structures built for London 2012.
Designed by Hopkins Architects and with structural engineering by Expedition Engineering, it is a really spectacular building.

(urban sketch)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

sketching at Disneyland Paris

A few sketches from a recent visit to Disneyland Paris

If there’s a big mob of people, no doubt there’s a character in there somewhere. 

Queues, of course, are part of the Disney experience.  

But it’s a fabulous place!

Monday, August 27, 2012


L’Orangerie is an art gallery in the Tuilleries park in Paris.
In the two large oval spaces upstairs, it houses 8 of Monet’s truly stunning large canvases.
People can sit  on seats in the centre of the room and admire the huge artworks.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

in the shade at Notre-Dame

Just behind Notre-Dame, there is a little park, where you can sit in welcome shade under rows of trees and escape the hot Paris sun.
(Unfortunately, it wasn't quite hot enough to dry my sketch, hence the marks on the middle tree where the pages stuck together!)

Friday, August 24, 2012

La Grande Arche

The ‘Grande Arche’ is a truly breath-taking building in the area of Paris known as ‘La Defense’.  
From the steps under the arch, you can look towards the centre of Paris and see the ‘Arc de Triomphe’ in the distance.
It's so tall that Notre-Dame could fit in the space under the arch.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Road to 2012

‘Road to 2012 – Aiming High’, is an exhibition featuring photographic portraits of athletes and organisers taken in the lead up to the 2012 Games.
The exhibition runs until 23rd September at the National Portrait Gallery, London.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

walking back to happiness

Crowds packed along the pavements to see the Women’s Olympic 20k Walk today.  I stopped to do a quick sketch with Buckingham Palace in the background.   A Russian supporter in front of me, had what I assumed, was a flag on a stick in his hand.  Suddenly he pulled out the ‘stick’ to reveal a telescopic fishing rod sending a Russian flag high into the air above the crowds.

It seemed to do the trick.  
Elena Lashmanova (Russia) took the Gold Medal in a World Record time, with Olga Kaniskina (Russia) taking the Silver.  
Shenjie Qieyang (China) took the Bronze.

Friday, August 10, 2012

in the swim

The Men’s Olympic 10k Marathon Swim takes place from midday today in the Serpentine, Hyde Park. London.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

'Angel of Victory'

The aptly titled ‘Angel of Victory’ stands at the very top of the Queen Victoria Memorial in front of Buckingham Palace. 
Many athletes have already circled the statue and this weekend, the Women’s 20k walk, the Men’s 50k walk and the Men’s Marathon will all pass by on the way to the finish line.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Jesse Owens' shoe

As part of the London 2012 Festival, the Royal Opera House is hosting an exhibition in conjunction with the Olympic Museum.  The exhibition briefly explains the history of the games and includes medals, torches and artefacts from famous Olympic athletes.

You are escorted round in groups, so I had very little time to sketch, but managed to make a few line drawings.  I added some coloured watercolour pencil later to try and show the lighting effects used to show off the exhibits.

The most poignant part of the exhibition is the collection of items from the Olympic athletes, including Sir Steve Redgrave’s rowing outfit and Kelly Holmes’ running vest.  I made a quick sketch of one of Jesse Owens shoes which he wore for the Long Jump final in Berlin 1936.  It was a very moving experience – it was just a shoe – but what a story, with so much history and emotion attached.

‘The Olympic Journey – The Story of the Games’ runs until Sunday 12th August at the Royal Opera House, London.   

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Men's 100m Crown

Who will win the Men’s Olympic 100m final?
Will it be the world record holder Usain Bolt? 
Will it be Yohan Blake, the current World Champion?
Can the Jamaicans get a 1,2,3?
Will the Americans cause an upset?
Questions answered tonight.
Semi-finals at 19.45 and 19.53
Final at 21.50

Saturday, August 4, 2012

No Bathing

Today sees the Women’s Olympic Triathlon take place in Hyde Park. 
Before the 43km cycle and the 10km run, the athletes will swim a lap of 1500m around the Serpentine, the large lake in the park, usually the home to ducks, geese, the odd swan and would-be Freddie Flintoffs.

Friday, August 3, 2012

on target

Olympic archery at Lord's

South Korean Oh Jin Hyek became the Men's Olympic Champion.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Head off!

The Olympic Cycling Time Trials start and finish today at Hampton Court Palace, in south west London. 
It is a beautiful place to visit, both for the historic buildings and the stunning gardens. 
Home at one time to Henry VIII, the cyclists will be hoping they execute their plans to the letter and have successful rides.