Friday, 8 April 2016

Week 23, Norfolk Flint

A beautiful piece of napped flint drawn from each side using watercolour, pencil, pastel.

Thursday, 31 March 2016

week 22. Samian Ware

Found in Norfolk,these sherds of Samian Ware pots possibly date from 1st or 2nd century AD. Samian Ware was made in Gaul (France) in huge quantities and imported into Roman Britain. It is usually decorated in relief with figures and animals - like the Roman soldier and the lion, horse and rabbit (?) we see here. I used watercolour, wax resist, conté and pencil.
It reminded me of the Easter egg I ate on Sunday. I wish the chocolate had been as thick as these pieces of pottery!

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Week 21, Medieval copper alloy bowl

“Medieval copper alloy bowl; beaten from sheet metal with everted rim and circular centre piece riveted into place at centre base of bowl; incised linear decoration on interior sides of bowl, perhaps of birds.”
I built up the colours with watercolour and added texture and details with pencil. I missed the 'birds' though!

Saturday, 12 March 2016

Week 20, Medieval Pilgrim Badges

Lead pilgrim badges were made in large quantities from about 1350 to
1450 AD. They were brought by pilgrims as souvenirs of the different
shrines they had visited and would be worn on hats and clothing. They
were very fragile and, although many were made, few have survived.
The Lynn Museum’s collection is one of the finest in the country. It was
started in the late 19th century by Thomas Pung, a King’s Lynn jeweller,
who paid children to search for them in the mud of the Purfleet. The
badges were dropped into the water by pilgrims using the ferry over the
Great Ouse on their way to and from Walsingham. Pilgrim badges were
the medieval equivalent of modern souvenir felt badges sewn on the
back of rucksacks.
The lion and the swan have lost their heads and the chap has lost a few extremities too!.

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Week 19, Lead cloth seals

I'd never heard of cloth seals before but I was presented with a box full, mostly made of lead, these tiny seals were used in Europe between 13th and 19th century to seal and identify sacks of goods and for quality control (wool, cloth etc). They would display the initials of the manufacturer, coat of arms of the city, date and other information. They are very small - similar size to a 5p piece.

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Week 17. Roman glass and other glass fragments

The piece of curved blue-green glass is Roman - amazing! The bluey-green was a beautiful colour and there was a tiny hint of rainbow-like iridescence on the surface which I tried to capture in paint.
The fluted greeney-brown bottle neck is 18th century.
I'm not sure how old the other coloured fragments are, I enjoyed trying to mix the perfect match of blues, browns and greens. The glass pieces each have a reference number written on them but I ignored that.
Roman and C18th century glass. watercolour and pencil

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Week 16. Stone axe hammer heads

These axe hammers found in Nofolk may be Neolithic so could be over 4,000 years old (from the late Stone Age or early Bronze Age?). They're very heavy so whoever wielded them was super strong. I enjoyed drawing the shapes - like a Barbara Hepworth sculpture - and looking for the subtle colours in the stone. I prefer the first drawing with more energetic marks which seem to reflect the movement of the axes when used all those millennia ago.
Watercolour, charcoal pencil, conte crayon, graphite and ink
Pastel, charcoal pencil, graphite and pencil
They remind me of two bird's heads!

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Week 15. Oyster shells and jawbones

These were found at a dig in Great Bircham, Norfolk. The English didn't bother eating oysters unless they had no other seafood, but when the Romans came consumption of oysters increased rapidly - they loved them! So wherever a dig reveals clues to Roman life (or later, as in the Saxons here) you'll find lots of oyster shells.
The jaw bones are animal I think but I'm not sure what animal.
brown conté pencils and graphite

brown conté and 2B pencil

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Week 14. Medieval brooches and spoon

I looked through a magnifying glass to draw these - I found beautifully detailed decoration on the round silver brooch. The spoon made an interesting shadow, like a face! I drew them life size - the round one is about 2cms across.

Silver brooch enlarged to show detail

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Week 13. Medieval roof tiles (fragments of)

Each one was a subtly different colour with some having inner strata of darker material. I did a watercolour wash on all then completed each with different drawing media - pen & ink, conté crayon, pencil etc.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Week 12 - Medieval shoes

These remains of Medieval leather shoes were found at Grimston near King's Lynn, Norfolk and must be at least 500 years old.  (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
I really enjoyed drawing them and used a Derwent crayon in 'chocolate' colour then a waxy black chinagraph then a black pencil to achieve the texture.