Meet the Correspondent: Omar Jaramillo > Berlin$show=/search/label/Omar%20Jaramillo

"I was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador, where I studied architecture. I moved to Kassel (Germany) in 1999 to accomplish a master degree. Although I have always drawn and paint, it was not until I started studying in the Uni-Kassel, that I started keeping a travel sketchbook. I had a teacher there who used to do a lot of sketches when he travelled on university excursions. When he retired, I helped to organize an exhibition of his sketches. He brought a huge box full of sketchbooks he had filled since he was an architecture student. I spent a whole day selecting the most interesting drawings. It was a wonderful experience that opened my eyes to a new world. In the last 10 years I have the feeling of being in a long journey. I like to discover the cities where I live, to understand why a place is the way it is and what makes it different and unique from others. Drawing is for me a way to learn to love a place, to become part of it. I like to draw architecture but I am more attracted to urban scenery, portraying how people live in the city. Since I’m a foreigner, everything that locals find normal and taken-for-granted, for me is exotic. I always carry a small watercolor travel set from Windsor and Newton and my sketchbook in my bag. I always thought that drawing was a solitary experience until I found Urban Sketchers. It was amazing to find so many people doing the same thing. It is a great place to share!" • Omar's blog. • Omar's art on flickr. • Omar's website.

Meet the Correspondent: Luis Ruiz > Malaga, Spain$show=/search/label/Luis%20Ruiz

Meet the correspondents: BANGKOK > Asnee Tasna



"I was born and trained as an architect in Bangkok, Thailand. After living in Singapore for nearly 30 years, I felt homesick — homesickness can happen at any age — so my wife and I moved back to Bangkok while my son went to study in Western Australia.

We started travelling around Thailand, my homeland that we had not been able to explore because of work, and that's how sketching really came about. We do a lot of drawing and sketching in architectural office, but it's totally different from what we call sketching on location. I also turned to watercolors. Sketching has helped me discover another side of life. I find happiness in doing something that has no monetary value called painting and sketching. I believe I gain something more valuable: walking, observing the crowds in every corner of Bangkok. The sound and fume of traffic, the color and smell of vendors lined on the streets leaving only inches to wade through, let alone standing space for sketching. The heat and sweat can be a turn off. But at least we have the great freshly brewed ice coffee, Starbucks style, that is available in every street corner.

Most of my sketches are done with chisel-shape pencil of 2, 4 to 6Bs on a smallish A5 sketchbook. For quicker ones I use fine line pens of various brands, sometimes adding watercolor splashes. For other watercolor works, I tend to mix them with water-soluble pencil lead or crayon such as Caran D'Ache's Neo Color or Museum. I find more freedom in mixing rather than just using watercolor. I also enjoy the quick lines of brush pen (Pentel ink brush.)

I find myself drawn to scenes with buildings, street scenes more than just human figures or nature. I also think I lack patience for details or desire for realistic accuracy. In other words, my sketches and paintings are rather suggestive, I think! I enjoy exploring with shapes, forms and colors."

• Asnee's art on Flickr.

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