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

Fête De La Musique, Melville, Johannesburg

by Cathy Gatland in Johannesburg, South Africa

We had a large (for us) group of sketchers turn up for the Fête de la Musique that was held in the streets of Melville on the last Saturday of June. This is a free musical event held by French cultural organisations in cities around the world, open to any professional or amateur musicians who want to perform in it. It's supposed to be held at the Summer solstice in the North - for us it was a freezing cold and, unusually for our winter, drizzly day. But hundreds turned up to enjoy the closed-to-traffic streets and the music pumping from two stages, as well as from doorways of restaurants and cafés along the way. Regular vendors of this quaint suburb's streets were invited to participate, as well as new and different food and clothing stalls. Apparently the music and festivities went on well into the night - wish I could have sketched it all, but I'd need to have been a good couple of decades younger!



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