Euromast, Rotterdam

Took a quick trip to the Euromast (tower) in Rotterdam. I was excited to go on the euroscoop that rotates to the top (185m high). I sat down and as it rotated I could feel the clunky movement beneath my feet and looking downwards, I instantly became frozen to the spot yet again. There was an audio guide but I can’t say I heard a word of it. Relieved to get off!

Fortunately, I had no anxiety on the main viewing platforms and so I did a few sketches looking towards the Erasmus bridge. Fantastic view! It was a fine day and you can see out towards Antwerp. I could just make out the New York hotel, dwarfed by all the surrounding skyscrapers. (See May 9th 2011)

Cologne, Germany

Saturday was spent in Cologne, Germany. Parked centrally and walked to the Cathedral, unmissable with it’s distinctive twin towers. We joined the large number of visitors to view the impressive interior with it’s large, colourful stain glass windows, particularly beautiful on such a sunny day.

Walked along the path leading to the zoo and took a cable car to get a good view of the city. The cable cars seat 2 (4 at a squeeze) and the ascent was bumpy. My heart was in my mouth when we swung over the river Rhine and motorway! Fortunately, the view made up for my acrophobia. I managed to do a quick sketch above the Rheinpark towards the Hohenzollern bridge.

On return to terra ferma, we walked through the sculpture park and I did a quick sketch of the view towards the centre of town.

I noticed a banner for the Kathe Kollwitz museum. Its slightly hidden away on the top floor of a small shopping centre. I wasn’t expecting to be the only visitor and enjoyed having the freedom to look and ponder. Much of Kollwitz’s work dating from 1901 til 1941 is preoccupied with the theme of death, war and social justice. Her drawings are incredibly moving. Often they show people in dispair and the strength of her drawing, espcially hands and faces, makes them so powerful.  I really like her wood cuts and etchings particularly her self portraits and mother and child pictures.

After stopping off at a cafe next to the St Aposteln church and walking in the shopping area, we sat in Fischmarkt square with a beer.  I sketched the Medieval townhouses and the 13th century Great St Martins Benedictine church. It’s a fun place to hang out. Great atmosphere!


Returned to Dungeness in Kent with a friend, Simon, who loves bird watching. Spotted a few egrets and lapwings (Haven’t mastered the art of looking through binoculars and sketching yet!)  Dungeness is great for bird watching and a strangely appealing place with it’s shingle beach and power station. It’s photographers heaven here with it’s exposed landscape and abandoned, weather worn boats and huts. We walked to the top of the Old Lighthouse and I sketched the view towards Romney Hythe. I looked out at the miniature railway and sketched the fisherman’s cottages and electricity pylons that scatter the landscape.

We wandered around Derek Jarmans, Prospect Cottage too. I did a quick sketch of the plants, driftwood and scrap metal sculptures in the garden.