A couple of weeks ago The Bristol Sketch Initiative went to the Arnolfini, but I wasn't hugely impressed with the exhibition "What Next for the Body?" It seemed to me that the artists were trying a little bit too hard to be shocking and grotesque, just for the sake of it rather than trying to convey any sort of social commentary, as was claimed in the promotional material for the exhibition.
It seems like most of the rest of the sketchers felt the same way because we all seemed to end up in a reading room which had a couple of comfy sofas and chairs :)
I spotted this really comfortable looking chair in the corner, so sat down to have a go at drawing it. I really like how the cushions turned out, especially the shading of the sides of the cushions. I think I've kind of captured the rumpled squishiness of them!
Last weekend, we went to Spike Island where there was an exhbition by Sean Edwards called Maelfa. He had a number of mixed media exhibits inspired by this run down shopping centre in Wales, and I suppose it was all about the sense of disappointment and failure associated with what was supposed to be a centre of commerce and community.
Anyways, I'm not sure the other sketchers were hugely impressed with the exhibition, but I actually quite enjoyed it. I'm really starting to enjoy drawing buildings, but I've always struggled with knowing what to include - I tend to try to include too much detail and my drawings end up looking messy. So I really enjoyed Edwards' style of pretty much blanking out huge parts of the landscape to focus the eye on one aspect of a building.
Here are my reproductions of two of his exhibits, called The Towerblock II and The Towerblock I, respectively.
I've tried to adopt this kind of style in the next sketch I did, which was a reproduction of a cool flyer I spotted before heading into the Spike Island Café for a much needed caffeine injection.
Of course, the real test will be try to mimic this pared-down style in a real-world situation, when I'm out and about in Bristol.