Norwich Solstice Scrawl Crawl

By John Shelley

On 21st June several SCBWI regions around Europe participated in a Summer Solstice Scrawlcrawl. Inspired by illustrator sketchcrawls but expanded to encompass writers too, coinciding sketching and writing events ran in Paris, Stuttgart, Amsterdam, Madrid, Athens, London and several other locations. Some fascinating images from all corners of Europe were the result, many of which have been posted to the dedicated Solstice Scrawlcrawl blog.

Not to be left out, in addition to the Scrawlcrawl in London organised by Anne-Marie, I decided to run one in Norwich too. We had a great day here, with 9 participants taking part, members and non-members, both writers and illustrators. Here are some of the images from the participants (you can see all my drawings on the Solstice Scrawlcrawl blog and on my own blog Shelley Scraps)

In the morning we first walked around Norwich's old medieval town, covering Tombland, the iconic Elm Hill and the banks of the river Wensum near the Art School (here's a video tour of the area). It was a quiet, peaceful morning with relatively few people about, many of us concentrated on the buildings. The writers not only worked on story ideas, but also joined in the sketching too - multi-talented!
Elm Hill by Lisa Smith

River Wensum by Lisa Smith
Elm Hill by Maureen Nisbet

Panda soft toy in window of Elm Hill's Bear Shop by Maureen Nisbet

Tombland Alley by John Shelley
Rear of buildings, Elm Hill, by John Shelley

More participants joined us during lunch, after which we moved on to Norwich Cathedral.

L to R: Maureen Nisbet, Kat Erwin, Joyce Taylor, Cathy Fiddy, Elaine Mitchell, Lisa Smith and Paeony Lewis. In addition there was Matt Robertson and yours truely.
The late Norman structure proved a rich source of subject matter as we spread out to explore the cloisters, interior and exterior.
Cathedral window by Lisa Smith
Cathedral from the Close, by Matt Robertson

Exterior, by Matt Robertson
Personally I was especially interested in drawing visitors to the cathedral within the environment of the architecture.
Screen near South trancept, by John Shelley
Cloisters, by John Shelley

Finally we all gathered to compare notes before ending late afternoon. With glorious sunny skies lasting until nearly 10pm we could actually have carried on for hours more.

I think everyone enjoyed the experience and we'll definitely run something like this again. Many thanks to everyone who participated!

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