Wish I had the energy for a caption. Here are today’s brushes. Actually a lovely escape from a very stressful day.
This fellow is a stranger in the sense that I’ve never met him, but he’s unique among my Brushes in that I know his name. And, thanks to his public career and autobiographies, quite a bit about his life and work.
I hope that doesn’t mean this portrait counts as stalking, because I’m a big fan. (That makes it worse, doesn’t it?) So when our paths crossed by chance today, the opportunity was too good to pass up.
Annoyingly, I’m forced to confess that it’s not my best work. (What has happened to his left eye?) But I’m hoping he’s recognisable to at least a few of you.
Back to complete strangers next, no doubt.
Back up to date. I did this one today, on the Tube. The colour scheme was obvious. This chap really was all in shades of grey. Pale skin, salt-and-pepper stubble and hair, grey clothes. It was like someone printed him out cheaply. Poor chap.
Oh dear. I’ve been neglecting this blog again. I keep doing little sketches and then completely forgetting about them. Like this chap. Where? When? Can’t remember. Sorry.
This chap was pretty irresistible. Sound asleep, for a start, so there was no irritating fidgeting to work around. And then that hood: all mottled fake fur, inviting me to try out a few of the pattern options in Brushes.
Then people piled onto the train and got between us, which was very annoying of them.
This is one of the sketches where I started to feel I’d cracked it: both the drawing itself and the use of Brushes.
It just seemed to come together, from the first rough, broad grey outline of this old fellow’s head. Unlike many of my drawings (I confess), this one really looked like the subject. I’d like to think a member of his family might recognise him from this – and that’s definitely not always true.
He kept very still, which helps, of course. Contrary to how he might appear, he wasn’t asleep – or worse. (Daniel Gray described this sketch to me on Path as ‘a dead Lloyd Grossman’.) In fact, he was reading a book, which was clearly absorbing as he barely moved a muscle.
There was a professiorial air about him, and his face seemed to have been formed by someone scrunching a loose bolt of fabric: all soft folds and pleats. And then that purple scarf: a casual, rather flamboyant touch, tossed over the shoulder of his sober black coat.
I couldn‘t help imagining that if you caught his eye there might be a similar touch of the eccentric, or dramatic, in his otherwise placid gaze: hints of bright colours within.
I’ve got back into the sketching in the past couple of days, starting with this splendid fellow, opposite whom I found myself sitting yesterday.
There are some people who so fully embody a stereotype that it’s hard to believe they’re not dressed for a film role. (Maybe he was.)
This chap, ruddy-faced in that way that suggests country air, horses and buckets of sherry, also had startling hair. It looked to have been petrified by Brilliantine into a golden helmet locked in place on his scalp.
The white-collared blue shirt; the gold tie with little blue emblems; the herringbone coat with black velvet collar detail: he’d been groomed and dressed by Central Casting as ‘Rural Toff’.
All of which begs the question, what on earth was he doing slumming it on the Tube in the middle of the afternoon?
Here’s a sleepy fellow from the train home the other night. His was a commuter face from Central Casting: drawn, lined with anxiety, held in a perpetual furrowed frown. Veering between dozing off and staring intently out of the window.
Poor chap. Hopefully it was only superficial. He was probably just tired.