Liverpool – 6 months in the making
The original Liverpool drawing is near enough A1 in size (59.4 x 84.1cm or 23.39 x 33.11 inches) and its drawn with a 0.1 nib Rotring Isograph pen (A super fine line nib and a fantastic Christmas present). The detail you can get on to a large sheet of paper with a 0.1 nib pen is phenomenal. I’d sent myself a time target of about 1 and a half to two months to complete this piece… 6 months later my aching hand refused to add another mark to the paper and I declared it complete.
Composition and constraints… this is usually a battle at the start. I’ve developed a grid system as I try and keep everything roughly where it is geographically (from a set starting / view point). The Liverpool drawing is probably the most complex I’ve managed so far. My drawings are initially done in pencil before going over them in ink, every now and then I decide to sand paper a section off and change the dimensions. The paper I use really has to withstand my changing creative moods! For the Liverpool Skyline I’ve used a range from Derwent’s smooth paper. Having researched paper types I’ll be sticking to a hot press, acid free and archival range. I’ve used papers from Gf Smith and Windsor and Newton in the past and am still on the hunt for the perfect paper.
Liverpool lovers provided me with quite an extensive list of venues, people, musicians and a gazillion items to add to this drawing. This one is as complex as it gets. The iconic venues include the 3 graces (I initially drew them in great detail in my sketch book first spending a few hours on each building). The Cunard management had kindly shown me around their building and I was really tempted to add some of the passport stamps of visitors / sailors that they had in store. I’ve tried to show the different areas in Liverpool, taking the Beetham towers in the commercial area to the more creative hub on the other side of the city centre as well as the beautiful sea front. A visit to the Liverpool museum showed how little I really knew of the Mersey beat music scene. In a city completely captured by the Beatles I wanted to find a way of bringing to light the other musical influences the city had.
My whirlwind research trip of Liverpool ended with dinner on Wood Street at Mowgli’s with my friend George. We’ve both got a healthy love for Indian street food and Mowgli’s did not fail to hit the spot, and captured a place in my drawing. I’ve provided an annotation sheet below that goes through my influences and elements hidden away in this drawing. Enjoy!
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