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: LONDON > Barry Jackson

"I’ve been drawing for 30 years, off and on. I was trained as a graphic designer, and that’s where I first encountered drawing seriously (before that it was mostly pictures of Spitfires, Jaguars, Marvel comics, Buddy Holly, and then pastiches of Aubrey Beardsley, Georges Rouault, Picasso, etc.)

As life went on and got more complicated, drawing slipped into the background. A bit like my old guitar, I’d haul it out now and then in holiday times. Partly because of lack of time, and partly because I wasn’t very good, in my eyes. I’ve got dozens of sketchbooks with lots of wasted pages!

Gradually, painting, and then drawing have reasserted themselves over the last few years (along with the guitar-playing). For 6 or 7 years I’ve been painting, mostly landscapes in Scotland, and now I’m semi-retired I draw a lot as well, and I’m very engaged in drawing and printmaking about London.

I’ve been taking classes this year at the Prince’s Drawing School and that’s given me a terrific boost – seeing other people’s approach to the same area is always interesting. I use a range of media and a range of supports. I like to draw big – on a board as well as use a variety of sketch book sizes – like many drawers, I take a delight in the kit, and a new kind of pencil or sketchbook can generate a childish enthusiasm. I don’t seem to have developed a single style like many artists – I can’t seem to settle down into one way of making drawings. Each time I think I may have found “the” way, something else comes along. It means I’m often going out to draw with a big bag of different media. Keeps it all interesting though…"

• Barry's art on Flickr.
• Barry's website.

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