Saturday, 17 September 2011

Proper brickwork...



When I was staying at ED's place a few weeks ago, I had an hour to spare before the phones would start to ring, and I took a stroll round Crystal Palace, primarily to shake off the dust after a multitude of tinctures the previous night.

In the road which goes up to the east of the park, there are some beautiful old villas, which were built around the turn of the century.

This particular house, probably now several apartments, just leapt out as a fine example of the most beautiful brickwork I have ever seen. That chimney would have been designed on cartridge paper by a draughtsman using a dip pen and Indian ink, and a skill which is lost to most designers these days, with their CAD systems with enough power to light up a small village.

I felt so inspired by that chimney breast design, that I wanted to share it with as many people as possible. This elevation, apart from the clutter of satellite dishes, is probably unchanged from the original design, and even the pipes add some interesting lines and shapes. Everything is relaxed and seems to fit so comfortably.

If you zoom in on the brickwork, you can see so so many added details, and I could stare at all this for ages, as indeed I did, at least until I felt that there might be a siren or two approaching to apprehend a somewhat dishevelled Scrobs, taking suspicious photos of someone's private house and muttering incoherently...

19 comments:

The Lakelander said...

There are still people who design things without the aid of CAD software.

Adrian Newey designs the Red Bull Formula One cars with a pencil and paper.

And they appear to work quite well!

Thud said...

Unusual chimney treatment with some interesting diapering visible, brickwork is something we have always done well. Pity about all that bloody piping though.

Electro-Kevin said...

I wonder how many people have stopped to look at it - other than tradesmen or building professionals.

Scrobs... said...

Didn't know that about the car designer Lakes!

I like mucking about with Sketchup, but it takes much longer than a sketch with said pencil and paper...

Scrobs... said...

It is different isn't it Thud.

The bricks are well laid too. The pipes were always going to be a bit of an eyesore, and I was reminded that when those c.i. systems were put in, how physically demanding the work actually was!

I think here, they've at least tried to make them look part of the overall design.

Scrobs... said...

Interesting point Elecs, I love it because I have a thing about brickwork, but others would possibly let it go un-noticed...

Electro-Kevin said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvWgQcEY85A&feature=related

I just know that you are going to appreciate this la.. - er - music Scrobs.

Blue Eyes said...

I don't know anything about brickwork* but I do look at these things.

* BE Sr apparently thought that it would be a good idea for each of his sons to learn a trade in order to have a fairly recession proof skill to fall back on. I wish he had actually done that! I reckon I would have loved being a brickie.

Scrobs... said...

Love 'The Boxer' Elecs!

Always funny hearing a lass singing 'I am just a poor boy...'!

Rather like Joan Baez singing "Virgil Caine is my name and I served on the Danville train."!

I used the opening notes from the original S and G song as a make-your-own rington, when Nokia first let you do in on the handset...

They're impossible to play, are those notes...

Scrobs... said...

Trouble at the moment Blues, is that there are so few jobs for bricklayers to do.

I'd have loved to have done more of that too, my dad was very good at it, and instilled a bit of brick pride in a younger Scrobs, hell bent on flogging houses, or measuring fields...

Weekend Yachtsman said...

Beautiful.

I suspect it dates from that brief happy period when 20th Century designs were built by 19th Century craftsmen.

I lived in one of similar quality as a child - though much smaller than this one; it was one of the "Hundred Best Houses" in Gidea Park, Romford.

Or, as we proudly called it in those days, Gidea Park, Essex; probably because the milk was still delivered by horse and cart. Maynard's dairies if you want to know.

Electro-Kevin said...

BE - The problem I've found with doing brickwork is that it's very rare that you are working at a comfortable level. You are either working on courses too low or too high. The one that is 'just right' is fleeting.

Scrobs - I like a girl who is confused about her own sexuality.

Scrobs... said...

"I suspect it dates from that brief happy period when 20th Century designs were built by 19th Century craftsmen."

Like that W.Y.

I somehow doubt that one could apply the same reasoning today.

Scrobs... said...

Elecs, as I seem to have been confused about something or other for most of my life, I'm pleased to have a temporary alliance with your ideals as well...!

;0)

T.P.Fuller said...

This reminds me of my maternal grandfather’s red brick combination wardrobe
It was a truly magnificent example of an early Victorian combination wardrobe dating to 1850. Once owned by the explorer Sir Richard Burton, The whole was in wonderful condition with gorgeous blue and cream lining all in excellent condition. The wardrobe itself comprised of 25 sections, the central section featured 13 large drawers each ash lined and furnished with gilded cast foliate drop handles and each drawer finished with highly figured/polished red brick fronts to match the exterior. Above these were 12 linen press trays, again ash lined with gorgeous red brick fronts, above again up a short gold ladder was a large open cupboard section lined in the leather featuring gold and ruby tipped pegs (originally used for ducal coronets). Flanking this middle section were 18 full length hanging compartments slightly deeper and wider than usually (around ten feet) found with brass poles and again the blue and cream lining cloth and extra gold hooks for silk sashes and medals. These 3 sections were enclosed by 4 beautifully figured doors with feature corbelles, raised panels and foliate decorative carvings in ivory and the whole surmounted by an ornate pediment of gilded gorilla skulls which looked very grand!

Scrobs... said...

That wasn't a wardrobe Thomas, it was the residue of a small estate somewhere near Hereford...!

Philipa said...

Love this post and have been meaning to get out and take a photo of some lovely chimneys locally. I have no excuse, just a sort of rooted to the sofa thing I must shake..

Philipa said...

But whilst I'm on the sofa, had to share this with you: http://www.mcsweeneys.net/articles/what-your-favorite-classic-rock-band-says-about-you

Scrobs... said...

Do that Pips, gwarn, geddout an' dwit!

And love the link too - great idea, and you should blog that!