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The Lunchtime Sketches

Sketches around East devon. Using different mediums, but all are A5 and I’m sat in the car.
This is a period when the only way to get my baby son to have an afternoon nap, was to put him in the car and drive. So I would give him his lunch, make some sandwiches for myself and drive off somewhere. For my own sanity, I drove to different places sitting there in the car. Eating my lunch and sketching whatever was outside.

Featured sketch above:

In the Valley of the Otter

February 26th ~ Pen, A5
Parked up in the Otter Valley on the lane to the White Bridge, near Budleigh Salterton. It’s a bright day, but very windy. Several walkers and cars bowling along this little lane.
Went for a short walk along by the river when the little lad woke up and we threw stones off the bridge into the river.

Materials Used

All of these sketches were drawn or painted in a small A5 Daler Rowney, Red & Yellow cartridge pad. Often sketched out quickly first with a 6B pencil, before adding watercolour or pen. I use a Winsor & Newton, watercolour field paint box and a couple of round brushes – sable no.6 & a no.1. The pens used are a waterproof fineliner pen and a black brush pen.

Watercolour and pen sketch of Wood End, nr Exeter.

Wood End

August 28th ~ Watercolour & Pen, A5
Parked up on the northeast of Exeter at a picnic site, overlooking the Duryard Valley. With a lovely view of the rolling Devon hills and their meandering hedgerows.
(However, some kind soul had taken the trouble to drive out here and dump their telly and a load of boxes. Some people completely baffle me!)
In a moment, we are off for the ‘little fella’s’ first visit to the swimming pool…
(Big success! As it turns out.)

Pen sketch of a 'Leafy Drive'

Leafy Drive

June 4th ~ Pen, brush & ink, A5
A scorcher of a day! Exmouth beach was heaving with people. Car parking along the front and the car park across the road were full. So I am parked up on a shady hill, looking down a pleasant leafy drive. Which is a much better bet than being sat in a boilingly hot sunny car. When the slumbering lad awakes we’ll walk down the hill and try to find a spot on the beach.

Watercolour sketch of Powderham's 'Tower in the Woods'

Powderham’s Belvedere

May 27th ~ Watercolour, A5
This was a very awkward sketch. The sun is streaming in, so I’m trying to keep the watercolour sketch in the shade of the steering wheel so that the paint doesn’t dry too quickly and look over my right shoulder at the subject. My attention today was Powderham Castle‘s ‘Belvedere‘ Tower on the hill opposite. Looking like a fairy tale castle, as no doubt, it is supposed to.

Pen sketch of Faggins Yard

Faggins Yard

February 27th ~ Pen, brush & ink, A5
Sat in another car Park! This time ‘Faggins Reclamation & Antiques’. The ‘Tiny Man’ was not asleep for very long. So we are off to look for a wardrobe – which all turned out to be too expensive here.

Watercolour sketch - 'Across the River Clyst'

Across the River Clyst

June 16th ~ Watercolour, A5
Poking about at Exton on the estuary side of things. Weather is still comparatively warm and the tide is well in. This sketch is looking across the river Clyst to Riversmeet House. Which is in the trees, at the end of the Goat Walk, at Topsham. Very peaceful here except for the odd train trundling past.

Pen sketch of Buckerell Church

Buckerell Church

July 15th ~ Pen (Fineliner), A5
Drove over to Buckerell, near Honiton, to see a friend. Not many places to park here, but found a little spot with a view of the church. If I sit in an awkward position I can just about see it!

Watercolour sketch of 'A corner of Bicton'.

A corner of Bicton

July 15th ~ Watercolour, A5
Whilst we sit and have a cup of tea at Bicton Botanical Gardens, it’s also time for a sketch. This is a corner of the garden showing one of the glasshouses, with the planted urns.
It’s a nice sunny day – Hurrah! Seems like we haven’t had one for ages, just grey days with rain. Mum & Dad have come along too. Here we can all have a pleasant stroll around, the ‘little fella’ can have a play and we are all at peace with the world.

Pen sketch on the train at Bicton.

On the train

October 2nd ~ Pen, A5
Back at Bicton on this sunny autumn day. The ‘little fella’ especially likes the ducks, play area & train – no surprises there!
Here’s a couple of sketches of him and J on the train.

Watercolour of the River Clyst

On the River Clyst

January 29th ~ Watercolour, A5
Myself and my friend, Paul were out canoeing on the Exe Estuary. Nosing our way over the mudbanks at Topsham and went up the river Clyst. A neap tide and very low water even at High Tide! “I don’t think those Gulls are floating – there sitting!”
This sketch is from the railway bridge looking downriver. I had to do it from memory. It was a cold overcast January day, but we still had a great time.

Pen sketch in the Garden Centre Car Park

Car Park

February 17th ~ Pen, A5
Sketching out of windscreen whilst sat in the Garden Centre car park. Sketching with a line to describe everything.

Biro sketch of the Exe Estuary and Teignmouth


February 16th ~ Biro, A5
Sketching in biro – which I like and is often handy!
Parked up on Woodbury Common looking across the Exe Estuary and on up the coast towards Teignmouth.
A blustery day with scudding clouds.

Pen sketch of Tree Ferns & Pots

Tree Ferns & Pots

April 28th ~ Pen, A5
Another pen sketch of the Garden Centre’s ‘interesting’ car park.
Also, when he awakes the ‘wee fella’ likes poking around inside too. Looking at tools, gnomes, plastic birds on sticks and other assorted ‘shiny’ things.

Watercolour sketch, 'Wet and windy Exe Estuary.'

Wet & Windy

February 23rd ~ Watercolour, A5
parked at ‘Riverside Valley Park’ in the Exe Estuary. A very wet and windy day outside the car, one brave dog walker went by.

Watercolour sketch of a building site were they are cutting through Sandstone


March 24th ~ Watercolour, A5
Today I’m sat in the ‘Toys-R-Us’ car park! Waiting to try and find a model ‘Scoop’ (from Bob the Builder), before heading over to Granmas. The shop has only just been built. To build it they have cut through the Devon sandstone like layers of a cake. Which being unmellowed at the moment, have a lovely texture and form. Making for a very industrial looking landscape.

Watercolour of the Otter Valley

Otter Hillside

April 16th ~ Watercolour, A5
A quiet sunny afternoon in the Otter Valley. A Jenny Wren is rooting in the undergrowth nearby and midges dance in the sunlight.
Down to Budleigh when the ‘wee fella’ awakes to throw stones into the river.
The trees on the hill opposite always look as if they have been drawn by Dr Seuss to me.


Pen sketch of a Door at Woodbury Church

Door Detail

May 18th ~ Brush Pen, A5
Fancied doing something different, so here’s a detail of one of Woodbury Church’s side doors.

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