First published: Winter 2011
Alex J. Tracy has been a painter from an early age. After tiring of the large paintings encouraged of him at a college near his North London home, he decided to start a more intimate project.
Carrying small sketch-books with him, he sat in his favourite coffee haunts drawing the scenes he saw unfolding around him.
Some sketches are very detailed while others are more like abstract line drawings – ‘It all depended on how long people were sat down’ – and the sketches tell the story of his time in any given coffee shop.
His early sketches are covered in curious beige stains, which Tracy says are from the coffee that he was drinking at the time. He used his fingers to transfer coffee from his mug to the page.