"I can’t remember a time in my life when I wasn’t drawing.
The other day a woman saw me sketching and asked me where I learned to draw… I was surprised by the question, but realized that behind it was her desire to draw, we chatted a bit and I made some suggestions. I thought about this later… yes, I was trained in art school, but in truth I’ve been learning to draw since I could pick up a crayon, and I still feel I’m learning every time I draw! I wouldn’t want it any other way!
I was born in Los Angeles, California, and the city and surrounding area continue to be a favorite subject. My studio is in nearby Pasadena. I love many things about this area… I’m drawn to places that feel like the “old” Los Angeles (which is relative of course!). I never tire of the effects of atmosphere (what some unkindly call smog!), the verticals of the palm trees and horizontals of freeways… and the many brush-covered hills. And, wherever I travel along comes the sketchbook, and I fall in love with places through drawing them. I think my work is becoming progressively more gestural — more about the feeling I have about a place than factual representation.
I’ve made my living as a toy designer, illustrator, and also teach drawing and design. I’ve always drawn and painted whenever possible — however, maintaining a constant sketchbook habit is something I’m doing now more than ever — especially since discovering Urban Sketchers! I’m delighted to be a correspondent!"
On the flag: Charlottesville, Virginia, USA sketcher Jessie Chapman sketching at Charlottesville train station with UVA Medical Center in the distance.
Urban Sketchers is a grassroots 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering the art of on-location drawing. Consider making a donation today to help us continue to 'Show the World, One Drawing at a Time.' All donations in the United States are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.
1. We draw on location, indoors or out, capturing what we see from direct observation.
2. Our drawings tell the story of our surroundings, the places we live and where we travel.
3. Our drawings are a record of time and place.
4. We are truthful to the scenes we witness.
5. We use any kind of media and cherish our individual styles.
6. We support each other and draw together.
7. We share our drawings online.
8. We show the world, one drawing at a time.
The Urban Sketchers logo was created by Italian graphic designer Franco Lancio.