Saturday, 6 May 2017

Evoking a Sense of Place, Canterbury, UK - Friday June 30th - Sunday 2nd July 2017

Contact Simone at for a registration form

We have chosen the charming cathedral city of Canterbury as the location for our summer weekend workshop which will include part taught and part freestyle sketching within this most beautiful of locations. Both of us are teaching workshops at the USK Chicago symposium in July and feel our workshop approaches are complementary - and both integral to capturing and evoking a sense of place; myself (Simone) by my precise understanding of architectural drawing and perspective which generally underpins urban sketching, and Pat with her exquisite calligraphy and emotional response often through the use of colour, to what she sees.

We believe that our 2 workshops combined with demonstrations, informal guidance from enthusiastic tutors, and time to explore Canterbury and the picturesque seaside town of Whitstable will be an inspiration to keen urban sketchers whether beginners or experienced; there should be plenty to inspire and delight everyone!

I spent five years studying architecture at Canterbury School of Art, now University of the Creative Arts, so have extensive local knowledge - and in preparing for this workshop I recently revisited a number of favourite locations where sketching sessions will be based. Because I have such fond memories of Canterbury and when I discovered urban sketching, I really wanted to return and immerse myself in a weekend of sketching there - needless to say I have been planning this workshop for quite some time!

It developed as primarily an urban sketching art holiday combined with some taught sessions to enthusiastic and like-minded sketchers, but then when I discovered that Pat Southern-Pearce might be in Kent around the time that I was planning to do this weekend workshop, it all fell into place. Two very different workshop approaches but both of us practitioners dedicated to evoking a sense of place in our own special way. 

We are planning to use the first floor of the centrally located cafĂ© /restaurant La Trappiste on Sun Street for our main base. We will start our day here and Pat’s lettering and layout sessions will be facilitated here. Hopefully if good weather, we’ll be able to take advantage of the first floor outside terrace!

Workshop Description: Pat Southern-Pearce


Workshop Description: Simone Ridyard


To truly evoke a sense of place, you have to understand the basic principles of setting out the view that’s there in front of you. This is an energetic and lively workshop focusing primarily on the basic principles of one and two-point perspective through demonstrations, tips, techniques and exercises that were covered in my book Archisketcher. Aimed primarily at beginners but structured in such a way to be a good refresher workshop for more experienced sketchers. As well as looking at perspective, we will also be looking at ways of ‘capturing the big picture’ – whether that's Canterbury cathedral remains to be seen!

Learning Goals

  • An introduction (or reintroduction!) to the basic principles of perspective 
  • Understanding of one and two-point perspective; how they work in real life views, rather than just as a theoretical exercise; where to find eye level and the elusive vanishing point. 
  • A nod to bird’s eye and worm’s eye perspective 
  • Improved understanding of scale, massing and context 
  • Understanding when to add the detail and when to leave alone 
  • Working within an allotted timescale…no pressure then! 
  • Using colour and developing own personal technique 
  • Increased confidence when drawing architectural views 
  • Also tips about how to ‘capture the big picture’!


Workshop Schedule

In brief, the first hour focuses on one-point perspective, then we’ll touch on two-point perspective and the last hour is your opportunity to focus on ‘capturing the big picture’ and using your understanding of perspective to help evoke a sense of place.
  • Introductions, theory and discussion - tips and techniques about sketching architecture, a hand-out will be provided that gives information about each exercise (approx.15 minutes) 
  • One-point perspective; quick demo, exercise and review (45 minutes) 
  • Two-point perspective; quick demo, exercise and review (15 minutes) 
  • Quick context studies before the final drawing…capturing the view in thumbnails (15 minutes) 
  • Final ‘free-style’ drawing ‘capturing the big picture’- using perspective which brings it all together (45 minutes) 
  • Review, final feedback (approx. 15 minutes)


Full Workshop Itinerary:


Friday 30th June

  • 9.30-10.30am: Meet at La Trappiste, 1-2 Sun Street, for coffee and introductions 
  • 10.30-1.00pm: Split into 2 groups for workshop (Pat will be based at La Trappiste) 
  • 1.00-2.00pm: Lunch 
  • 2.00-5.00pm: Afternoon sketch crawl around Canterbury and as a group we’ll explore and sketch the glorious Canterbury cathedral and its grounds (entrance fee included). This session to include a 30-minute perspective demonstration by Simone followed by early evening ‘drink and draw’ sketching in a pub garden (possibly The Dolphin,17 St. Radigund’s Street,) first drink included. 
  • Evening: Optional dinner at Posillipo, 16 The Borough, set menu limited choice 3 courses £24.95 - (not included in the workshop fee, but can be booked when registering for £20).

Saturday 1st July

  • 9.30-10.00am: meet at La Trappiste for tea and coffee
  • 10.00-11.00am: coach to the picturesque fishing village of Whitstable to draw by the coast!
  • 11.00-1.00pm: guided sketching session with us both, including a 30-minute demo by Pat 
  • 1.00-2.00pm: lunch - if enough interest we will book some tables at Samphire, 4 High Street (it's just won Kent's Best Bistro award...)
  • 2.00-5.00pm: afternoon sketch crawl, no tuition although we will be available for informal guidance and there will be series of ‘show and tell’ sessions across the afternoon
  • 5.00-6.00pm: leave for return coach trip back to Canterbury 
  • 6.00pm: early evening ‘drink and draw’, maybe at the Dolphin or location TBC

Sunday 2nd July

  • 9.30-10.00: meet at La Trappiste for tea and coffee
  • 10.00 -12.30: split into 2 groups for workshop (Pat will be based at La Trappiste) 
  • 1.00-2.00pm: lunch 
  • 2.00-3.30pm: Lunch followed by final sketching session 2-3.30pm. 
  • 3.30-4.00pm: End of workshop

Links to venues and tourist information:  

Included in our workshop:

  • Tuition - 2 x 2.5 hour workshops with Pat and Simone
  • Demonstrations - 2 x 30 minutes by Pat and Simone
  • Informal and enthusiastic guidance throughout the weekend from both of us
  • Customised hard-backed souvenir sketchbook
  • Cathedral entrance (usually £12)
  • Coach or mini bus (depending on numbers) to Whitstable
  • Morning tea and coffee at La Trappiste before workshops start
  • First drink Friday evening
  • Optional dinner Friday evening 
  • Donation to USK

Maximum number of participants (level of experience)

24 – all participants welcome regardless of level of experience

Minimum number of participants 



Supply list:

Bring what you normally draw with but for Simone’s workshop: no specific requirements but she suggests:
  • Pens or pencils. Simone uses Unipen fine-liner pens 0.1-0.5mm (lots of them!) or pencils (B-2B).
  • Suggest A4 or A3 sized good quality cartridge paper to get the best from the exercises, either in a pad or masking taped to a board. Sketchbooks are fine for the final drawing; Simone uses an A5 Moleskine watercolour sketchbook and likes to draw across a double page., probably best not to have a spiral bound book.
  • Your favorite sketching materials for the final sketch; colour, mixed media; whatever you prefer welcomed...and encouraged!
  •  Sun hat and folding stool, if it’s hot weather we’ll try and draw in the shade – but we will be outdoors. 
Pat has more detailed requirements!

Registration fee: 

£200 (£220 including optional £24.95 3-course dinner on Friday night). Please confirm when booking if you wish to join us for dinner. Non-sketching friends and partners are welcome to join us for a small fee, please enquire when booking. Email for a registration form or any queries.


In progress – hoping to get sponsorship from local art suppliers, will update in due course.


Workshop Instructor's bios:

We hope you find our workshop proposal of interest and please contact me if you have any questions. Accommodation in Canterbury is pretty expensive during the summer months, so if you want to join us I'd recommend booking as soon as possible. Canterbury is an hour from London St Pancras on the high-speed service so it's possible to travel down on Friday morning (so saving on a night's accommodation).  If we have a few people planning to do this, we might move the start time - but this can be finalised nearer the time.

With all best wishes...we hope you are excited as we are about delivering this workshop!


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