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

lights go out, walls come tumbling down

boiler building

Davis, CA: Lately I have been spending my lunchtimes documenting the demise of an old historic (and largely ignored) UC Davis building, the old Boiler Building. It has been earmarked for demolition for quite some time now, to make way for a planned Music Recital Hall (see this Davis Enterprise article). I was contacted in the summer to come and sketch its final days, and set about drawing it from various angles until it became clear the bulldozers were not coming any time soon. That gave me a little more time to enjoy it in its final days.

boiler building (other side)

The building has not been used for a while, and is full of rusting old pipes and old mechanisms. I couldn't go in, but sketched what industrial gems I could from the outside.

boiler building againbehind the boiler buildingboilers


Finally in November the machines of deconstruction arrived, great hulking mechanical monsters, ready to put the old building out of its misery.

boiler building, under demolition

It looked rather like a T-Rex had escaped from captivity. I imagined massive dinosaurs drinking from the creek in the Arboretum, facebook pages being set up to guarantee their protection, soon they would be just another Davis quirk with their own tunnel and another thing to talk about at dinner parties, "well we have Tyrannosaurs in Davis you know, my husband says he saw one once on the greenbelt but I think it was just a turkey..."
boiler building (back)boiler building, under demolition

Bit by bit, the walls are tumbling down. As I sketched the scene below, yesterday lunchtime, a small group of parents and young children were there to watch the big metal machines in action. By now the Boiler Building is a haunted ruin.

boiler building, coming down

I'm going to continue to capture its downfall right up to the construction of the new Recital Hall. I'm sure the new building will be bright and shiny and full of wonder, but I'll miss sketching this old crumbling wreck.

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