Thumbnails of Loughborough, England (or are they sketches?)

May 19, 2016 | 2 Comments

My regular readers will know that I really love my morning cafe visits and that this simple event has made a huge difference in my work life on many levels.

Not only have I started drinking and sketching much more coffee – a latte every morning – but I have used this time to really plan out my projects and do some non-computer work – refer here and here for more. A big part of the effectiveness of my planning sessions is that I love doing my thinking in a buzzing atmosphere – the white noise of the cafe helps me focus.

But these cafe visits are also great because of their social interaction – I love working on my own, but a few chats in the morning seems to set me up for a more efficent work day. Not only have I gotten to know the staff at my local cafe, but also a great group of men that sit at the front table. This table has the official title of The Table of Knowledge (TOK) as two of ‘the boys’ have been having breakfast there for over 20 years. I love hearing their conversation in the background and each day there can be different guys at the table, mixing it up a bit. As an architect I mainly worked with men and these cafe visits have made me realise how much I missed working in an environment of ‘male expert conversation.’ Am I being a bit cheeky here?  I will let you decide on that!

The TOK boys talk about anything, most of the time its just white noise to me, other times it is hard to not hear (like today when they were singing “See you later alligator” and then had a big political discussion with our local Federal member for Parliament who is a big sporting legend and TV celebrity). Most days I just say hello, but as I am now sitting out in the sun, I have been chatting to them more lately.

One of the guys is from Loughborough in the UK. As I was telling him about my trip to the UK, and the symposium in Manchester, he bought in a book to show me his home town. I am not sure I can include a visit there this trip, but I did these quick sketches from the book last night – it had old photos of lots of really interesting buildings and street scenes.

In light of my recent post about thumbnails, while I was doing these sketches (and also listening to a podcast and writing a few notes on the side at the same time – I’m always multi-tasking!) I was thinking about whether these sketches are thumbnails or just simply small rough sketches. I don’t think it matters how they are labelled! The important thing for me is that they were a quick way of recording the essence of these photos so that I can remember looking through this book.

As it is simply a collection of old photos the personal attachment is low (as opposed to re-doing sketches from previous Scottish trips as per yesterday’s sketches) so I didn’t need to do anything more elaborate than these quick line sketches. Of course if I ever visited the place, I would want to pull out my paints.

Anyway, back to Loughborough, I am learning from the TOK all about its importance. This includes the facts that it is mentioned in the Doomsday book and has the largest belfry in the world… hmm, I am sure there is more that I need to know this place and will probably find out more tomorrow morning. It is a great honour to hang out in the same cafe with a native from Loughborough, don’t you think?

I know that he would love to know if of my readers have heard of Loughborough, or have been there! And it would be even more exciting would be if anyone has sketched there? Please let me know if that is the case for any of you.


  • Pam Thorburn says:

    All I know about Loughborough is that it’s one of the few places in the UK you can train to be a PE teacher! But no, I’ve not been there. Love your blog, having just discovered sketching!

  • Lynda Howells says:

    I went to Loughborough many times, as my daughter was at University there in the 90”. I have to say, l do not find it a particually memorable town! ???? The Univerity is best known for it’s sports activities and degree courses in sport . I never sketched there, as l was not so confident in my sketching abilities, in those days … Shame! Enjoy your time ” up North” as they say in UK! Take warm closes with you , is my one piece of advice. Although, at the moment Bondi is as cold, if not colder than home! ????Lynda

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