27th July 2012

An arty farty tweet up in Matlock Bath

Barely a week seems to go by lately without me having some sort of tweet up! I do love my tweet ups! And what better place to have one than the gorgeous Matlock Bath in Derbyshire.  If you haven’t been, you really should.  It is the seaside town of the East Midlands… errr, there’s no sea, but apart from that, it really is as seasidey as it gets.  No windmills either… or sea breeze… BUT, during the spring and summer months, it is teaming with leather clad bikers, the buzz of happiness and the smell of chips, and it doesn’t get a lot better than that!

I went with the lovely Angie Shawcroft (@Angie Shawcroft on twitter) who is a very talented graphic designer and illustrator, and who I met on Twitter a few months ago.  We like our gad abouts, which normally involve sketching, but have also been known to involve giggling in a bird hide, driving through a field (Dukes of Hazard stylie), eating bacon butties and catawauling to Lana Del Ray!

On this occasion we were quite well behaved (I said ‘quite’) and had a good old sketch by the river at Matlock Bath, with only one minor digression when we… okay… I… got sidetracked by some of the afforementioned leather clad bikers *mops brow*.  You can probably get quite a feel of the place from this pic!

We took a fair bit of rammel with us.  For any readers not familiar with the word, rammel (a personal fave of mine,) is stuff!  Stuff you take with you or accumulate, some of it useful, some of it not.  The Free Dictionary, on the interweb, describes it as ‘disgarded or waste matter’.  I find that a bit insulting to my rammel!  As a word, though, it is on a parr with gubbings, which The Free Dictionary does not acknowledge (shock, horror!) but which means the insides of a thing, and numpty, which The Free Dictionary does acknowledge and describes as ‘a stupid person’. It is a Derbyshrie favourite!  We both took arty stuff, but failed to take anything to eat… oh, I tell a lie.  Angie had a fudge, which she kindly shared with me.  As you will know, a fudge is little more than a finger, so we had half a finger each.  We were famished and ended up buying a heaving and pulsating hot pork and stuffing cob, which, it has to be said, was possibly one of the most animal fat riddled things I have eaten for some time!  I’m not planning on repeating the experience!

As is always the case with these arty tweet ups, we produced two really different drawings.  Angie focussed on a group of trees closer to her and the old building in the photo at the top of this blog, and did this stunning, very atmospheric pic using pencil, pen and Inktense pencils, which I think is just fab…

and I produced this rather more surreal pic, using pen and Inktense pencils…

from this view across the river…

We both ended up finishing our pics at home, despite being sat for two hours working on them in situ.  Really enjoyed doing this one though and so far, out of my tweet up sketches, this has to be my fave!  Today, I am dragging my ten year old dort with me to Matlock ~ she’s become so interested in my sketching trips that she has requested one of our own.  Of course, I am happy to oblige.  There may be a picnic on the grass too!

Roll on the next tweet up!

About Abi Burlingham

I write children's books and paint pictures inspired by nature, animals, trees etc, mostly in acrylics. I am a crisp addict.
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12 Responses to 27th July 2012

  1. Jo Carroll says:

    What a wonderful time you had, Abi – and the pics are fab too!

  2. I’m always inspired by your days out and sketching sessions. I can’t believe how sociable you are and how frequently you go to meet up with people you’ve met on Twitter. It’s ace. Keep up the good work, Abi!

  3. Awww! I’ve filled up now, Marnie! Thank you 🙂 xx

  4. Love the drawing Abi! And what a sweet blog post too! 🙂 Always enjoy seeing how differently we both see the world… I prefer your bright & cheerful version! Can’t wait till our next outing. Funny too, I never think of these as tweet ups now, you’ve just become a friend I happen to tweet with xx

  5. Ditto!!! That is very true – re the friend / tweety thing! Yep, looking forward to the next one too 🙂 x

  6. Emma Pass says:

    Lovely post about one of my fave places! Your description of the cobs made me giggle… Fab drawings, too! x

  7. Thanks Em! I love it there too. Yep, the cobs were… errrm… interesting 😉 Glad you like the pics! x

  8. Martin Shone says:

    Fantastic! So when’s the next Tweet up?

  9. Ha! I have no idea Martin, but hopefully it won’t be long 🙂

  10. Nadine says:

    You had me cracking up! How could you forget the FOOD? That would’ve been one of the first things that I would’ve packed, lol. Outdoor trips always seem to make me hungrier than usual.

    You have such fun friends. And that’s why I love reading about your tweet-ups. They’re always full of some sort of adventure. BTW, that biker looks positively yummy. Heh-heh.

    Love, love, LOVE the sketches, plus the area where you went. It looks so peaceful, and the green is so calming. I also like that you’ll be including Dort in the future. Here’s to more rocking tweet-ups!


  11. Aw, thanks, Nadine. I know… the food!!! How could I? Am the same as you, Nadine, and get really hungry when I go anywhere. In my mind there’s some connection between day-trips and eating 😀 When me and dort went sketching yesterday we took LOADS and ate the lot 😀 Yep… the bikers… Mmmm! If you ever come over to the UK Matlock Bath is definitely a must visit!

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