Bike Sketching and Pub Scrawling

30 January, 2016. It’s unseasonably warm and I’m taking advantage of that unusual situation to get outside, ride, sketch, and visit my favorite pub. I recharged my Pentel Brush Pen with a fresh cartridge of ink and sallied forth this weekend with no other purpose in mind except to enjoy myself.

While out bike sketching, it’s seldom that I find a location with a convenient rock or bench to sit upon while sketching. My bag makes a halfway decent table, so I wind up standing astride my bike and scribbling, and sometimes wind up with a quick sketch that has some movement and energy as this one of trees does. That’s the sort of thing that makes me very happy!

It’s much warmer than it should be for the end of January, but the pond is still frozen quite solid.

I far prefer to keep the line work loose. The lines are cleaner, but lack energy when I find a bench to sit upon and draw as happened in this sketch.

Last night, I grabbed my brush pen – not realizing it was almost dry – and rode down to the pub for a burger and a brew and a bit of “pub scrawling.” Pub scrawling is what I call sitting at the bar and drawing the patrons as I enjoy a cold glass of Rylie Porter. One fellow caught my eye and I think perhaps he “made” me doing so – probably because the people around me weren’t shy about looking over my shoulder as I sketched. I’d suddenly become so popular that I felt a little like a celebrity!

I rather enjoyed working with the almost dry brush pen.



  1. Jean · January 31, 2016

    Great stuff! I’ve never seen a blog of someone cycling and stopping to sketch. There’s a Canadian cyclist that uses his Strava to store artistic outlines of this trip .

    • azorch · January 31, 2016

      Thank you, Jean. Not all of my sketching is done by bike – but enough so that I’ve given the practice a name. Likewise, a fair number of sketches and paintings have focused on what I see as the distinctly civilized act of dining and enjoying the company of friends. “Pub scrawling” really doesn’t do that sort of thing justice, but as so often happens the phrase popped into my head and just kind of stuck. Funny how words can take on a life of their own!
      I also carry a sketchbook when hiking, or exploring a place on foot. In fact, it’s a rare sketch that comes about in any sort of mechanized vehicle. Not only is the inherent bouncing around counterproductive, but one is moving past the world at such a clip that it’s impossible to conveniently stop, take it all in, smell the air, and scribble. I prefer the slow path whenever possible.
      I maintain several blogs as a matter of fact. This one is really just a journal in which to compile sketches from various scraps of paper and different journals into a single place. Your interests also seem to include the bicycle, and if so you might visit The Early Morning Cyclist as well.
      All the best, and thanks for the kind words.

  2. byanode · January 31, 2016

    Love how your mode of transport matches your mode of expression.

    • azorch · January 31, 2016

      It is interesting to me, too. Circumstance dictates, form follows necessity.

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