This is from a doorway on Pensioners’ Court, which is the court beyond Preacher’s Court. The Building with the four archways is part of the Brothers’ realm: the infirmary above and the coffee room below. I don’t know what the turret is, very intriguing.
The gardens were magnificent. In front of me was that huge magnolia tree. It moved in the wind and contained darkness much darker than I have drawn it.
I enjoyed the two towers: Barbican and Charterhouse, and the way the view was bracketed by the tree on the right and the lamp-post on the left.
One hour 45 minutes, drawn and coloured on location. The day was overcast and threatened rain. Round me, a gardener was watering the borders.
It should be “Pensioners’” court (plural).
Those chimneys are hard to draw. They are not simple rectangles, but a complicated geometric shape, a square put at an angle to another square, difficult to see in the light and shadow.
The crest of the roof is not straight. It goes downwards at quite an alarming angle, as drawn. The windows are not in a straight line with each other, which makes me wonder exactly where the floor is, inside.
I drew this from under the shade of the new building, the “Admiral Ashmore Building”. While I was drawing, the gardeners were making the window boxes, and crushed the geranium leaves. The place smelt of geranium, and earth and water.
I like it that you can see the Barbican towers beyond. I made this observation to a Brother who paused to chat. He told me that these brutalist towers are not popular with certain of the Brothers. They have identified a place in the garden where you can sit, so that the towers are obscured by a tree.
About 2 hours (those chimneys!!), drawn and coloured on location.
Here is what it looked like before the colour went on:
I wanted to draw this view before it disappeared. Today, Moorgate was closed completely to motor traffic, so it was calm to draw, though windy and cold. It rained, as you see from the droplets on City Point.
The Globe Pub, 19th Century, is on the left. The small square notice says:
“In a House on this site
the Swan and Hoop
was born 1795”
The City Point tower is in the background. This was built in 1967, and refurbished in 2000, when the curved projection at the top was added. The designer for the refurbishment was Sheppard Robson. Here’s what the Citypoint website says.
“The building’s spectacular entrance canopy is approached through the public square, leading to two dramatic twelve storey cathedral-like galleria, offering an inviting and exhilarating experience for both occupiers and visitors alike. The two gallerias allow natural daylight to penetrate into the heart of the development, creating a feeling of scale and corporate arrival.” – http://www.citypoint.org.uk/
The building next to the Globe pub is propped up with steel girders. The “Jones Bootmakers” sign hangs on. Cables pour out of one of the windows.
This took about 1½ hours, pen and ink on location. I coloured it later, at home. On the way back the wind blew. Outside the Barbican Centre, the wind caught the hair of a woman on a mobile phone and blew it straight upright. She had very long blonde hair, so she looked amazing, like someone in a cartoon dropping down a lift shaft.
The London Wall Place newsletter of 5th January 2017 said:
“We wish to advise that the operation to install the new footbridge across Wood Street was aborted on Wednesday 21st December due to technical issues with the alignment of the Macalloy suspension bars that connect the bridge deck structure to the pylon.
We are in the process of rectifying these issues and have agreed a new road closure with the City of London for the bridge installation, week commencing 6th February with a back up closure the following week.
The install of the stainless steel pylon on the 19th December was a success and this is ready to receive the bridge.”
“Macalloy” is the name of the manufacturer of the steel bars. They are based in Sheffield.
The bridge was successfully installed on the 6th February.
I drew the picture sitting on my suitcase near the vehicle entrance to the St Giles area. A man came to open the nearby garage, which was crammed with builder’s equipment and paint pots. Later, a succession of well dressed middle-aged people came by, as though leaving a large event. They were all of a type, and spoke distantly with each other.
Afterwards, I walked underneath the bridge and looked at the junction between the bridge and the sloping walkway, on the right of the picture. This joint is interesting because the walkway slopes down, so, to join it perfectly, the bridge cannot be horizontal at this point. It looks as though the bridge twists slightly to accommodate this geometry, but it’s difficult to see at the moment. I have drawn the bridge as slightly rainbow-shaped, as that’s what it looked like, but the architect’s pictures in the newsletters show it as flat:
Drawn from outside the Pret on Queen St, about 1hr 30.
The building in the centre is “Albert Buildings”, a thin triangular building on the corner of Cannon St and Queen Victoria St. It is incredibly complicated, with many pillars and arches and different window shapes.
Now it is inhabited by a number of small businesses. I saw a dental surgeon, Shoe Care, and “Traditional Pure” lebanese food. It is now managed by “First Base” as “Cannon St Serviced Office and Business Centre” who describe it as a “listed turn of the century building with quirky Victorian features”. They don’t specify which turn of which century, but evidently it’s not the most recent one.
“Albert Buildings, the grandest surviving 1870s block, built 1871. By F.J. Ward, whose office was here. Arcaded Gothic, mixed English and Early French, with a remarkable assortment of window heads” The Buildings of England, London 1 by Simon Bradley and Nicholas Pevsner
St Mary Aldermary is one of my favourite London churches. Inside is the friendly Host Café, and welcoming tables and chairs, and a stunning fan-vaulted ceiling. The church is on Bow Lane, near Watling Street, and the current building was built after the fire, in 1666.
I was keen to draw this view of St Paul’s before it vanished behind the new building on 2-4 Cannon Street.
“PLP’s scheme, for global property firm Pembroke Real Estate, will replace a 1959 modernist office building by Theo Birks called Scandinavian House. The north facade, facing the cathedral, is the most orthogonally formal, with red sandstone cladding and a 3m window grid with anodised aluminium frames.
The south-western elevation tapers to create a public garden which will provide a new home for Michael Ayrton’s sculpture of Icarus.” From Building Design Online 22 September 2014 | By Elizabeth Hopkirk
While I was drawing this, the traffic marshall of the building site came by, looked up at St Paul’s, and remarked that it was a “fine building”.
It was extremely cold, about 2degreesC, and I was wrapped up in my Loden coat and furry boots. You’ll notice I invented a new watercolour technique. It’s called “greasy fingers marbling effect”. See the extreme right of the picture. Before I went out, I put a LOT of hand cream on my hands, because this cold weather makes my skin crack. But then after I had been gripping the sketchbook, I found the paint didn’t stick. But it’s quite a good effect, I think.
Saint Magnus was Earl of Orkney, died 1118 and canonised in 1135. This is a Wren church, re-built 1668-1676, after the Fire of London. There has been a church hereabouts from at least 1128.
This church has a marvellous porch and clock, in the shadow in the drawing, but accessible from Lower Thames St. A notice in the porch says “This Churchyard formed part of the roadway approach to the old London Bridge, 1176-1831”.