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Capturing the Moments: Urban Sketching at The Catalyst in December

Our Urban Sketchers found their way to the Catalyst Museum for their December Meet Up. Our studio artist Claire Pitt has been working with the Museum on their Synergy Heritage Lottery Funded project, with a particular focus on exploring how the museum can engage with new audiences. So it was the perfect opportunity to invite our urban sketchers to explore the museum and its beautiful surroundings, then share their thoughts (and sketches) with Claire.

As this is only our third ever Urban Sketching Meetup we were delighted to welcome back familiar faces, as well as meeting some lovely new people! The group met at the reception at 10am, and then journeyed up to the second floor via the museum's marvellous glass lift. This gives you a peek at what brilliant views you can see from the Museum.

After a brief introduction to the museum and the project, our sketchers were let loose across the musuem, with an agreement to meet back at 12. Some headed up to the paranormic glass observatory, whilst others explored the rest of the museum and some ventured outside (the weather was slightly on the rubbish side).

The Catalyst Museum had kindly provided a room for us to use as a base for the day, which allowed people further space to work on their sketches, have their lunch and chat about their work. We have discovered that moments for conversation are important to the group, as well as the opportunity to sketch in a social setting. Anyone can go out sketching on their own, but the opportunity to meet people and talk, is what makes an urban sketching group special.

After conversation over lunch, some people took the opportunity to get in some more sketching, whilst others carried on their lunch time conversations. At some Urban Sketching meetups there is a 'throw down' where everyone puts their sketches together for a group photograph, a 'selfie for the sketches' type of thing. In our case, our studio artist Allison goes round and asks the group if they are happy sharing and takes some snaps with her phone.

The date for our January Meet Up is set for Friday, January 12th. We're currently working on confirming the location at the earliest opportunity. We intend to keep it within Halton, either in Widnes or Runcorn, ensuring there's a convenient spot for lunch and local shops/cafes nearby. Accessibility is also a priority, so any suggestions you may have are welcome!

You can check out what we've been up to in October and November by reading our blog posts. Find the October blog at and the November blog at They give you a sense of the places we've been sketching. As we move into the colder months, we like having the option to work indoors or outdoors (weather permitting) and a spot to enjoy our lunch!

Can you help The Catalyst?

They are exploring how to make Catalyst more accessible for the local community. The project will redevelop Catalyst’s heritage gallery and provide new activities and events for visitors.

Whether you have visited recently, in the past, or not at all, they would like to hear from you!

Please follow the link to fill in their questionnaire Link to form

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