Wednesday, October 08, 2008
Back from Blighty
Flying out of Geneva, you can just about see the Jet d'Eau above and to the
left of the wing, away in the distance.
I popped over to London last weekend to see the UKCPS show. I took a train to Bristol on Sunday with my brothers to go to the private view at the Royal West of England Academy. I can't remember the last time I took a long rail journey but it was very comfortable. Tickets were booked online and we bought some nice things for lunch in the station. It was a far cry from the last time I ate on a train; going to my aunt's farm in Kent, I bought a ham sandwich and spent the next three days being violently ill! Paul bought some sushi which I tried and I was instantly converted. Again, bad memories were dispelled as the last time I tried sushi was in the '80's - I was going through a macrobiotic food stage! -and the seaweed wrap tasted disgusting, really strong stuff. It made me wonder if Japanese food has been tailored for the Western palate now or whether it's just that my palate has changed a lot since then?
Bristol didn't seem as big as I had imagined but much busier. There were lots of secondhand and fancy dress/party shops for the big student community and we lost count of how many Starbucks we passed on the way. The venue looked very impressive and in a great location close to the shopping area. The gallery was packed by the time we got there (we got sidetracked by a Borders bookshop with a cafe (Starbucks again!) on the way!) and for good reason - the work was amazing! The ones I had already seen looked even better in the flesh and seeing the pictures now uploaded in the UKCPS website, I'd say there is no comparison to how they looked in reality. It was a really humbling experience for me. I had a look at the ones close to my own drawing first, as it was close to the door, but after that I stayed away from it in case I overheard anything critical! It was quite scary! I had no expectations of a prize - it was one of my first colour pencil drawings and being juried in was more than enough! - but it did surprise me (and my brothers) to see one particular drawing not win anything. Goodness, if I had drawn that, I would be slightly miffed not to even get a recommendation, it was quite outstanding and again, you wouldn't really think it from the scan. It does make you wonder, and also proves that juries selections are very personal. Anyway, I came away from it feeling energised, inspired and determined to improve my drawing skills. Can't ask more than that! Oh, and my vote went to Roger Lewis's 'Fascination' because I wished I'd drawn that - it was delicate and beautiful, not trying to be 'clever'. I loved the face on the right especially, the treatment of the clothes, and mostly because it was the one that I felt a connection with the moment I saw it - I wondered who the boys were and not what pencils were used.
I won't post the photos I took as I'm not sure about the copyright of that, but the list of entries and winners is here on the UKCPS website.