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

Architecture Fellowship in Italy, Installment 2

I've been spending lots of time in Civita di Bagnoregio trying to learn about its architectural history. Lots of books, including some I stumble through in Italian, lots of walking around, and a fair amount of sketching. I get a lot of, "were you the woman sketching in the piazza yesterday, on the little stool?" Si!

View 1, looking north toward the medieval Priest's House and prison (close to where the priest and Bishop could keep an eye on the culprits!):

The main street here was an Etruscan east-west Decumanus Maximus (a town planning concept later picked up the Romans), and the main piazza that was an Etruscan then Roman forum nearly three thousand years ago is still the heart of all the activity in this tiny town. Tonight, there is a jazz concert here, and the entire town and visitors will turn out in the piazza.

View 2, looking west toward the Medieval home turned into the Town Hall during the Renaissance. The exterior stair is a detail typical of this region.

I decided to do a series of wide angle drawings of this ancient space, with notes that would describe some of the buildings whose history I was learning about. Here are four images of the Piazza San Donato, one view in each direction. And you can see how I eventually figured out the color palette, including shadows and shade-- a lot more gray than I expected! And I switched from Burnt Siennato Quinacridone Burnt Orange for the glow...

View 3, looking east toward the Chiesa San Donato and Campenille bell tower, probably both built by the Longobardos (Lombards) around 600AD.

View 4, late afternoon looking south toward the Renaissance palazzi Arcangeli and Alemanni, the largest in Civita, built around 1550AD. And I finally figured out the colors!!

Next installment of this fellowship adventure in Italy will be 3,000-year-old Etruscan caves and tombs...


Stephanie Bower is a correspondent of Urban Sketchers Seattle. Read Installment 1 of her report on her Fellowship here. See more of her work on her website, blog and flickr.



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