Explore #WeAreOCA
Skip Navigation

A camping stool and a bottle of water in the panier

Sheffield’s first Tour-de-Sketch took place yesterday, with support from the Pedal Ready Cooperative

Coombs Road Viaduct

A few sketchers were wobbly and unconfident on bicycles, so the Pedal Ready team coached them first, checked the bikes over, even supplying some spanking new bikes on loan, and then we set off, with the Cycle leader at the front and another at the back to keep an eye out for stragglers and those with technical (that is to say, mechanical, not art technique) difficulties.
Thornbridge Hall view

A cold bright day, we stopped every 15 minutes or so to sketch. The stop off points had been pre-agreed when someone went out on a recky. It was interesting that no-one complained about the viewpoints that had been designated as stop offs: there is always something to draw, wherever you are. The stop times were a problem though: 35 minutes was not really long enough to get truly stuck into a drawing. We all felt we were just getting into our stride when it was time to go. It was a long day: starting at 9 and finishing at 5, but how it flew.
At the end of the day, we sat around a large table in a cafe at Hassop and passed the sketchbooks round, talking about our techniques and giving each other tips and ideas about materials. Amazing to see the variety of interpretations of the old birch we all drew, and of the viaduct at Coombs Road.
The old birch

What struck me most about this event, and our now regular monthly sketchcrawls (last month in Sheffield’s covered market all day) is the social networking. I have always regarded drawing and painting as a largely solitary activity, but I have a world of friends – in all corners of the globe – on Flickr, and a vibrant network of sketchers of all ages and backgrounds in Sheffield. Art can now be a highly social activity, which is a real bonus for a gregarious soul like me.


Posted by author: Jane Parry
Share this post:

8 thoughts on “A camping stool and a bottle of water in the panier

  • This sounds just what I need; safety in a crowd! I love sketching but so often feel exposed and vulnerable. Are there any sketchers looking for this this opportunity in Tunbridge wells or near?

  • Sounds great, but not on a bike for me. I have just discovered Bristol drawing club who meet irregularly and not always for sketching. Haven’t been out with them yet but look forward to it . W ould welcome people to sketch with so thanks Paul for info.
    Dorothy

  • Dorothy506086 says
    Sounds great, but not on a bike for me. I have just discovered Bristol drawiong club who meet irregularly and not always for sketching. Havnt been out with them yet but look forward to it . W ould welcome people to sketch with so thanks Paul for info.

  • Sounds like it was a great day – lovely to get together with like minded people. Had a sketching day with a couple of OCA students recently – I had a great time and at last increased the number of things in my sketchbook! I found that there is definitely safety in numbers, as I don’t like going out by myself to sketch, but this felt fine. Thoroughly recommend it, although not sure about the bicycles, as I haven’t been on one for years!

  • What a good idea! Great sketches too.Wonder if there is anyone interested in ‘group sketching’ in the Melton Mowbray area?……….

  • Great idea – love the sketches – i’m a sole sketch walker in the New Forest, to start a group would not only be benifical health wise but good fun as well as shareing ideas. anyone interested in the south of New Forest?.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to blog listings