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: GHENT, BELGIUM > Robbe Vervaeke

trainstation restaurant

"I started sketching about a year and a half ago. I've always loved drawing from reality, but it took something more to get me to start carrying my sketchbook everywhere with me. A friend of mine started a sketching blog, and I suppose I have become one of the most enthusiastic members. Now I can't let go of my moleskine. I bring it everywhere I go. I have made it a habit to arrive everywhere I go early, so I can sketch. In bars, on trains, whenever I have got nothing really on my hands, I'm sketching.

I graduated from animation at the KASK in Ghent last year. Long ago, I decided to try and become an artist rather than an animator. The thing that drew me into animation wasn't Disney. I have never really seen a Disney film. It was the fact I love film, I love drawing, and I met William Kentridge. So I put two and two together, and here I am. It's an unusual choice, but the most interesting things can be found in places you would never look.

I have this unhealthy obsession with oil paints, I can't really let it go. I'm that type of person that always has to stay busy, you know the type. I'm trying to work as an independent filmmaker. At the moment I'm pitching a short animation film project made entirely in oil paints. Imagine being a painter inside the fine borders of film.

Sketching is the thread that holds it all together. I love it, I'm obsessed with sketching. It combines this unique and intense way of looking at people and places, to film, to animation, to painting. I sketch for my own benefit. I'm constantly trying to improve.

I believe that, if I improve my sketching abilities, all areas of my work will benefit from it. And I don't think I'll ever be able to quit.

I live in Belgium, and I commute a lot. I sleep in a small town called Deerlijk, but I do everything else in Ghent. I travel around inside of Belgium a lot, wherever I go, I report it in my sketchbook. From everyday life on trains to the big museums in the area, I draw everything I see."

• Robbe's blog.
• Robbe's art on Flickr.
• Robbe Vervaeke's drawings at Gentschetsts blog.
• Robbe's graduation short film "erszebet".

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