August to October 2021
A day by Tower Bridge, business planning.
But how do you decide what you want to do?
Visit stimulating places,
Fraser is learning to play tennis. I drew Isla watching him, then she drew him, and titled it.
At an office CPD, on lighting. Not a bad one. You learn more, obviously, from seeing the things skilled designers (and their visionary clients) have actually built than you do from watching Powerpoint.
Edinburgh has an extensive stock of ageing bungalows with big back gardens and they’re gradually being bought up by young families. A roster of talented local architects can transform them by taking a bit of back garden and building the kind of bright and open living space people are after these days. Few are as lofty and light as friends Asa & Daniel’s one, by David Blaikie.
Innes (and me), learning to be gardeners.
Sitting In Advocate’s Close admiring Morgan McDonnell’s sensitive modern buildings on medieval steps. A design from a couple of years ago sitting comfortably on a route from 600 years ago.
Ruari’s left school, Fraser’s about to start.
Sometimes, more than others, you feel that time is moving on.
A plane, manufactured in Scotland.
This one’s in East Fortune. We were there to watch a Spitfire and a Eurofighter Typhoon, amongst others. The last Spitfire was produced in 1948 and 46 years later technology had advanced so incredibly we were able to build the first Eurofighter. It’s the most extraordinary man made thing I have ever seen.
A couple of good speakers:
I looked after the kids for the day, to give their mum some time to commit shopping. Innes ended up in a pond in a public park, momentarily submerged.
A man on the North London line.
Want a (free) hug? This is outside Camden tube during a pointlessly brief trip to London.
Free Hugs is an international movement, but I haven’t spotted it in Edinburgh yet. It’s for fairly expressive people I think: a big hug with someone you’ve never met on a busy corner in London. Am I too Scottish?
Earlier in the week we went out for tea with Jonathon and Pavlina who are sadly leaving.
Now that might just be reason for a hug.
It’s the start of a new year for the business and time to look back on the last one. A weekend in sunny London spent in Clissold Park and Mike’s back garden. Me and the gang catching up with old friends and colleagues. Back in Edinburgh looking at the hard, but still attractive, Bakehouse Close. A comfortable scale of space with some nice details by Oberlanders.
A girl on the train back from Glasgow at 8.30pm on a Friday night.
Andrew Gillespie of the A@131 society had been kind enough to ask me along to talk about sketching to Strathclyde University students. I studied at Strathclyde so was keen to go back and they put some effort into advertising it, so it was well attended.
I hadn’t talked about my drawings before and enjoyed it a lot. It’s good spend a little time thinking about what you are trying to do, after all.
Earlier in the week, after a late Christmas do, I spent some time looking at a coffee machine: modern on the inside, classic with a hint of modern on the outside. In the design world, from suits to buildings, that’s a popular mix.
Innes and I missing the outing to the Singing Kettle. He’s on the sofa, ill, and he can’t get comfy.
Watching progress on site at Castleward, Derby. I like the houses with the trees so close: let’s see if the buyers do. The houses look quite conventional but have layouts you might describe as quirky. (Surely: intelligent response to a complex problem?) It’s housing at quite high densities, but it’s houses, not flats. The idea is to give families the chance to live in the city centre.
You could have the celebrated (and fairly quirky) Brunswick pub on your doorstep too.
I stopped off briefly in Newcastle on the way home. I like the new glass pavilions in the station in the context of John Dobson’s beautiful Victorian shed.