Artist in Residence

A month ago, I was drawing cartoons at the Hurlingham Club. Then, just as I finished this sketch, the lady lowered her newspaper and spotted me drawing her:

Maxine the Jesuit

She called me over, and I thought I was in trouble. Instead, she flipped through my sketchbook and made me a job offer. “I’m organising a charity fundraiser at the end of May,” she said. “Will you come and sketch the evening?”

Polish Club staircase

And that is how I found myself at a Jesuit black-tie gala at the Polish Club in South Kensington. When I turned up, fresh from my bank holiday, I found out there was a whole page about me in the programme. The Jesuit charitable organisation had made me the official Artist in Residence. They’d even included one of my cartoons, which they must have found on this website.

Jesuits mingling

So I found myself a chair and a quiet corner, and I started drawing the Jesuits.

Maxine introduces a speaker

Then there were introductory speeches, and a few words about the charitable cause that the gala was supporting this year. I got a shout-out too.

David the Jesuit

The lady I had met my accident was called Maxinne; she and a man called David had organised the event. They were both extremely kind and friendly, and David announced to everyone that I would be selling my cartoons as I went, if anybody fancied them. Maxinne and David were the keenest buyers; I took photos of my work as I went, which is how I’m able to reproduce them here.

Bobby Chen on the piano

The main event was a piano recital by the brilliant Bobby Chen. I gave him this cartoon at the end of the night, and he posted it on his Instagram.

The view from the Polish Club

In the interval, everyone mingled and ate canap├ęs.

Bobby Chen's interval

Then David hosted the charity raffle, with help from two young family friends of Maxinne’s. At the same time, on David’s instructions, I passed round my cartoons and found a couple of buyers.

The Jesuit Raffle

I had such a great evening as Artist in Residence, and met lots of lovely Jesuits. Clearly the moral of the story is: always sketch random people in public.

Artist in Residence: the end

The Sequel: Imperial Winter Ball

Cartoon Story: The Full Spa Treatment

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