Two and a bit pencils later

2011-02-24, , Comments

Six months ago I decided to visit Bristol Museum on Wednesday evenings and draw interesting things until I got to the end of my sketchbook. Two and a half pencils and 51 pictures later, I’m done.

Two and a bit pencils later

I don’t think I’ve made any great progress as an artist but I’m happy at least to get my eye back in. Besides, in my day job, as a computer programmer, it’s hard to truly finish anything, so it’s good to — well — finish something.

My appreciation of the museum has grown. I’ve had time to read labels and walk through those quiet upper rooms filled with silverware and crockery. I’ve noticed small details in familiar paintings. I can point out the scars in the stonework caused by war-time bomb damage.

Late opening on Wednesdays may be a recent idea but it’s proved a rapid success. When I first started coming it seemed like I had the place to myself. Every so often a gallery attendant would drift by, but that was it. Now, though, I’m not the only one who turns up to sketch, and on most Wednesdays it seems there’s an event going on: statues have been unveiled, presentations made, films shown; the year of the rabbit kicked off; exhibitions have changed; and one evening the main hall was packed with dancing brownies and balloon-filled bin-liners were emptied on them from the first floor gallery.