I got a Cotman travelling watercolour set for Christmas, and have been desperate to try it out. I had a brief fiddle last week, but only tinting a sketch after the event (see Teaching Students), which isn't quite the same.
As well as complimentary newspapers, free coffee and even a bicci, there was indeed a lovely big table laid out with napkins, mugs and glasses, and nice, wide seats, which made painting much more feasible. It soon became a right mess though, as you see above! There's something funny going on with the scale of the mug in front, but you get the idea.
This one with the newspaper was my first attempt, followed by the lady at the top. I was a bit worried at first about destroying the drawings, but I'm really pleased with the way the colour helps, and I had great fun.
When I arrived, I met up with author Julia Jarman, and our publisher took us to lunch at Pizza Express (thank you Hachette!). I didn't think it was appropriate to whip out my sketchbook over lunch (and I was too busy scoffing).
After the trip to Happy Films (see Recording Studio) We made our way back to St Pancras and said our goodbyes. I had a few minutes to wait for my train, so I drew the people waiting by the departures board. I got so into it, I very nearly missed my train!
This was the last sketch of the day. Unfortunately the train was an emergency stand-in so, though we still had our big seats and tables, there were no fancy bits and bobs. They had no buffet food, and even ran out of hot water for coffee before they got to me!
The up side was that, instead of the single glass of wine I should have got, they kept it flowing. And of course, we English are at our best in adversity, so we all started chatting to our neighbours. I showed my sketchbook around and the steward left us the bottle. The very nice man above moved over to my table half way up and the journey flew by, despite the rumbling tummies.