Location Drawing – Cardiff Castle

Following our previous drawing workshops, we were separated into groups depending on which theme we had chosen. We were then sent to specific locations and asked to do a number of tasks, which were as follows;

  • Agree a particular view/vantage point for the group and complete one view finder drawing each.
  • Make two drawings using one or two of the drawing techniques that we explored in the last drawing session.
  • Collect at least one material from the location.

We were also asked to locate an image at the location and scan it with the “Aurasma” app to receive further instructions, but we couldn’t get it to work correctly.


IMG_1101-0Our group’s location was Cardiff Castle. Before settling on a viewpoint to draw, we walked around the perimeter of the castle taking pictures as we went. My favourites of these photos are as follows;

The castle itself isn’t exactly a new landmark to me, but I suppose it’s something that I’ve not really appreciated as much as I should have. It’s quite a unique sight to have a castle right in the middle of a city, being integrated in with all this modern architecture and urban lifestyle; I feel that this picture on the left really captures this amalgamation.

The skyscraper-esque building in the background appears almost as an extension of the castle’s towers and I enjoy the harsh collision between the two worlds.


Again, I think the images below also explore this combination of urban and historical.

IMG_1105-0IMG_1107-0Just off to the side of the castle was a short underpass tunnel plastered in graffiti. What I find most interesting about this is how nearly every inch of this tunnel is covered in graffiti, yet the castle is in such close proximity and remains untouched. It’s as if even in the world of vandalism there is still some degree of respect for these old bricks, (that or they have very good cleaners).


img_1336We sat down in the park next to the castle and used our viewfinders to select a scene. For my viewfinder drawing I wanted to use an abnormal shape to look through, so I first burned a hole in my piece of cardboard. I’m not particularly happy with the drawing itself as I feel the scale was too small to really capture any detail, but I quite like the way the branches of the trees inhibit the view of the castle.


img_1337 (1)For the next drawing I used the Umberto exercise where we drew a straight line on the page and searched for it in our surroundings. I’m slightly happier with this outcome however I don’t feel this really captures a strong sense of perspective. I also wish I hadn’t used colour on this piece now as it’s slightly distracting from the forms of the castle.


img_1335 (1)This drawing was made using a similar technique to the last, however this time the line was curved. It was slightly harder to locate this line but I am much happier with how this piece turned out. I used pen to draw with and once finished I got some water from the frozen mote and let the ink bleed to create depth.


I would have liked to have done some more studies but we were getting a bit fed up of sitting in cold; so we each collected our materials and left. Just outside the castle next to the pavement were some loose bricks, so I decided to pick one up and use it as my material that I would take back to uni.

Whilst I enjoyed these exercises and doing observational drawings, I’m not sure how useful these studies will be for my project work or in fact, what the point in going to these specific locations was. Although, having an object to start with in the brick will help me to focus my work and give me an area of study.

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