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

Back to sketching basics: ink and wash

For many reasons, partly because it's my nature, partly because I see the great work other urban sketchers do, I'm always trying new media... new pens, new inks, new paints, new pencils, new paper. For someone who's been sketching as long as I have, it keeps me interested and excited about what we do.

For a recent illustration assignment in which I had to make urban sketches of a revitalized neighborhood in Raleigh, NC for Walter Magazine, though, I went back to the old tried and true, ink and watercolor wash.

I have more control with this method than I care about having when I'm trying new stuff. That really matters when you're working against a deadline. Plus, on the three days I went to Raleigh to draw, the temperatures were in the 90s. For the outdoor sketches, especially, I wanted to draw efficiently and get the job done! I added watercolor washes when I got home.

The neighborhood I sketched was interesting... the new businesses there are lively and exciting, yet, overall, there was a quiet ambience on the days I was there.

It spoke of the South and it spoke of summertime.



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