down the grafton with james and paul

grafton arms, kentish town
On the Monday I was back in London, I took my Mum to afternoon tea at Fortnum and Mason’s (always fun), and in the evening I went down to the Camden area to meet up with my good friend James, and my fellow urban sketcher Paul Heaston. It was actually the first time I had ever met Paul in person, having followed him for the best part of a decade online since the early days on Flickr and Urban Sketchers, always been one of my sketching heroes (and a fellow ginger sketcher). So it was great to finally meet him, and he is a super nice dude as well. It turns out he loves the Beatles as much as James and I do, so there was a lot of music talk. We went down to the Grafton Arms in Kentish Town and sketched in there, silly jokes ahoy, and Paul showed us his remarkable sketchbook, full of extremely accurate curving perspectives and highly detailed interiors. Blown away and inspired in equal measure. I sketched the above scene, and also drew my companions (below). A fun evening out in north London.
james mcauley
paul heaston
And here are a couple of action photos, the first sowing Paul’s great skills of fitting everything in, the second showing me with that thing I apparently do when I am drawing, poking my tongue out. My son does that when he plays soccer so it must be a Scully thing.

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Oh, and James and I did our Panini football sticker swapping for Euro 2016. Business sorted!

up kentish town

kentish town station
This is Kentish Town station, in north London. I came here when I was meeting up with my friend James one evening, and stood outside a curry house opposite sketching as buses and cars trundled up Kentish Town Road towards Tufnell Park and the Archway. There are a lot of old tube stations that look like this, with the dark ox-blood red glazed terracotta tiles and the typical arches, and one day I swear I would love to sketch them all (hint hint London Transport, a fun book commission?), though I hurried through this one a bit, not drawing the whole length of the building (it would make a really good panorama…) and added the colour when I got home. It was designed by Leslie Green, who built many of the iconic London Underground stations over a century ago, and is on the High Barnet branch of the Northern Line. It’s a pretty interesting place, Kentish Town, and this was my first time here in years, other than passing through. Though in fact I did end up passing through, ending up meeting my friend in nearby Camden Town, where we swapped world cup football stickers.

kentsh town map sm