Alexa Loves : An old book and my love of drawing people

Last weekend I found the most gorgeous book in a junk shop in Greenwich, when I was sheltering from the rain. Underneath a pile of papers I found a gorgeous book printed in 1942, called 'People of Importance'.  It's full of beautiful observational sketches of children by J.H. Dowd. The book has quite a humorous tone and it's so interesting to read such old fashioned stories - how times have changed.

Here are a couple of images from the book.  I love the one of Regents Park - the toddler approaching the gentleman, so much character.  How lovely is the moment captured between the two girls? There are so many drawings in the book that I'm drawn to! The book also smells amazing, I love the musty scent of old pages; and can't help imagining old Dowd as he sketched children in the 1930's and 40's.

The J.H Dowd illustrations  reminded me why I love to take photos and why I love to draw: I love really looking at people, getting to know them and understanding them.

I remembered some sketches I did whilst sitting on the beach in Lyme Regis a couple of years ago.  The images below are my own.  I was trying to capture the interactions  beach as I sat huddled in my blanket with my sketchbook and a pencil.  This afternoon I reworked them using pens and felt like I was back there in Devon, trying to defend my chips from the seagulls! A cute little boy in the shallows and a reflective woman staring out to sea...

These next ones have been reworked since the original sketches, turning them into simple line drawings.  I think they lose a little of the 'life' but I am really interested in the shapes that are created by body language of families on the sand. I love how out of proportion I've made the baby in the first image, it looks like a giant! Oh well, back to the drawing board...

Ooo I do love drawing on a Sunday afternoon!