Category Archives: palm court

York – sketching my arrival

After this weeks reviews of my Manchester Urban Sketching Symposium experiences, I am now returning to my travel holiday sketchbooks. I shall whisk you onward to York today. We spent 6 days in York and I completed 45 pages of sketches. Like all cities/towns, York is very visual , but also has so much visual (and therefore sketchable) history from Roman, Medieval, Georgian and Victorian times.


The first sketch was on a very crowded train from Manchester to York, looking out the window. When we were well into the countryside and when I sketched this there was a consistency of the view. So what I sketched on the page was a compilation of the view in the distance (which remained the same for a while) and a typical view of a changing mid-distance, then some coloured flowers out the window.

Today’s post is setting the scene in York. They are drawings done over time in our hotel room. The urban sketching of the city comes later….


I changed sketchbooks mid-York and wanted to continue the narrative in Sketchbook Two, so I sketched the page above . It was fascinating to find out that “York” is derived (potentially) from yew. I love the yew tree and the myths and history that surround it. It is a very English tree to me.

31july2016-palm-court-york 31july2016-palm-court-view-york


As I mentioned in my Manchester blog, I usually draw my hotel and this was no exception for Palm Court  This lovely eight room family run Victorian townhouse is a B&B and our comfortable home for the week. Palm Court was only 5 minutes walk from York City walls – we walked through the early 14th century Monk Bar each day, and every time I was in awe of the history surrounding me.



Across the road from our B&B was the River Foss and a small park. It was not a particularly pretty park, but it did have a large flock of Canada Geese and a family of swans. I had collected some feathers earlier in the week, but It was not until the last day that I had time to sketch them .


I sketched five of my breakfasts in York – sometimes just the toast. On the final morning I had some of the FULL English breakfast. My special customised watercolour pencil wrap, it sits neatly on the breakfast table. Sometimes the times that you stop for food are opportunities where you have control over the time and space and view. I may appear that I draw food a lot, but this is actually because these are the opportunities that are there.  I also talk and sketch at the same time, so can interact with people.  Mum and I would plan some of our day over breakfast or be checking the map to see how to get to our first place to start the day.

Next weekend I will blog about sketching in York. I really enjoyed my time there and would return to do it all again tomorrow.