Europe18: A morning in Glasgow

June 21, 2018 | 8 Comments

I had one morning in Glasgow on Thursday last week – this is the day before the tragic fire at the Glasgow School of Art – so sad! I didn’t make it to that end of town last week but I’m pleased that I have visited it before (including an inside tour) and sketched it a number of times. (see here and here)

My morning was based around the George Square area and I was greeted by a rainbow, which of course means that rain is around. All morning it was a mixture of sun, wind and little rain and this limited how much sketching I could do.

I started sketching one of the buildings facing the square even though it was raining I used a statue to shield me from the wind and rain.

Then I headed to a cafe and was very happy that it had a bench with a great view of the nearby intersection.

I’m glad that I sketched at least one red sandstone building. I spent time thinking about what colour to paint it and once again decided that potter’s pink was an important part of the mix. I say once again because this is what I did for the red brick buildings in Verona, and the stone in Umbria.

After visiting a phone shop to get a local sim I headed to Cass Art to stock up on two essential items. I ended up buying some more stuff – mainly due to chatting to the staff member who served me.Honestly, these days I am not as crazy about buying new stuff all the time as I was a few years back, so it surprised me a little that I bought so much. Everything has a reason and an intended purpose for this trip.

One of the new stuff that I bought was a Ecoline watercolour brush pen, so I immediately put it into action with a sketch of GOMA. It was fun to use, and I want to try it again soon.

The rain started again so I headed for another cafe – this time Tinderbox which is were I met Wil Freeborn for the first time in 2010.

It was time for me to return to my hotel to check out and then head to the airport. So one more quick sketch standing up in George Square. I got rather excited to see a Palladian motif (from the basilica in Vicenza) in this building.

And finally. here are my pages from this day in full so you can see how I spend a decent amount of time finishing off the pages having fun with composition.



  • Emily DeArdo says:

    I love that photo! A double rainbow–how lovely!

  • Maria Sanchez says:

    Love your sketches. What kind of sketchbook are you using in this challenge?

  • Judy Kistler-Robinson says:

    Oh, I’m sorry to hear about another fire at the Glasgow School of Art! I visited Glasgow in 2010 specifically to see the building and am glad I toured it then.
    Is it common in Europe and UK for establishments to have stamps for their location (the Tinderbox stamp)? I’ve seen that on other Urban Sketchers posts from Germany and wonder if it is common in many places in UK and EU. It isn’t here in USA.
    I love seeing more uses for Potters Pink!

  • Lael Sorensen says:

    Page composition is really one of your great, if woefully undersung strengths. Such page composition is something many of us wish we might be better at. More, please, on this. 🙂 Great to follow your European adventures here and on Instagram.

  • It is fun to see each sketch separately with their story, but I always love seeing the composed page too.

    • Janet Chen says:

      Dear Liz,
      Could you comment on SAA watercolor paint in tube, is it a good quality paint to invest?
      Janet Chen

      • Liz Steel says:

        HI Janet – I’ve never used SAA – try contacting Jane Blundell as she is trying all brands.

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