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


Mostly my bikes are (like me I suppose) a bit middle aged and worn out. When I book one in for repairs, there is typically a one or two week wait (they're always flat-out assembling the latest shipment of fully suspended low-void carbon monocoque bicycles featuring tubeless wheels with a particularly lurid shade of red titanium spoke nipples). On arrival with my rusty pride and joy I often sense a slight snigger, double take or ironic comment from staff that were quite possibly still using trainer wheels when my bike first rolled off the showroom floor.

While that's not entirely true because there are some pretty good bike shops around Auckland that are staffed by super passionate and knowledgeable bike guys. I might well have found the ultimate bike shop for my old clunkers though. This place (T. Whites Everyday Bikes) has a drop-it-in-and-we'll-get-on-to-it-soon policy, sells a mix of old and refurbished bikes, frames and gear and have cabinets full of old second hand parts to rifle through when for example your old 6 speed overbar thumbies finally bite the dust. I tried to sketch it one lunch-time, but I didn't fit half the old frames and parts on display...

*LBS — a bike geek term meaning Local Bike Shop.



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