Meet the Correspondent: Marina Grechanik > Tel-Aviv, Israel$show=/search/label/Marina%20Grechanik

"Sketching is one of my passions. I don't feel comfortable when I leave home without a sketchbook and some pens in my bag. I think that my way to put things in my memory is to draw them. And taking pictures isn't the same thing.

I live in a very dynamic surrounding — Israel is a warm country with warm weather and warm people. Of course, we have seashores, which calm us a little bit. I love to sit in a corner of some Tel-Aviv coffee shop and explore relationships: between people, their environment, between myself. All this unique local mix of cultures, languages and styles is always a great source for inspiration. You need to be fast, because, as I said, everything is very dynamic. But that's why I love it so much.

Sometimes, I look around, and I find some usual items like sugar bags or napkins. I use them in my drawings to show the atmosphere. Sometimes I draw directly on placemats."

• Marina's art on Flickr.
• Marina's website.

Meet the Correspondent: Tina Koyama > Seattle$show=/search/label/tina%20koyama

"The dictionary says that a hobby is “an activity or interest pursued for pleasure or relaxation.” Although urban sketching certainly provides both pleasure and relaxation, I don’t think of it as my hobby. I think of it more as a way of life – something that has become such a normal part of my everydayness that it shapes how I view the world.

For most of my life I had both the fear of drawing as well as the desire to draw. In 2011, inspired by Gabi Campanario’s Seattle Sketcher column, I finally decided to overcome the fear. His drawings of Seattle – my birthplace and lifelong home – were of sights that I had seen many times, yet had never truly seen. I wanted to learn to see, and therefore experience, those locations (and any new ones that I travel to) more completely. Part 8 of the Urban Sketchers Manifesto, to “show the world, one drawing at a time,” has a flip side: Sketching enables me to see my own world, one drawing at a time.

In the last four years, it is not an exaggeration to say that Urban Sketchers has changed my life. I have met and sketched with many wonderful people around the globe, either at symposiums or during other travel, because the USk network brought us together. I sketch almost weekly with my local group, sharing sketches, art supplies and friendship. Even when I stay home and enjoy sketches online, I am still a part of that rich network, learning with every sketch about other people’s lives.

In May, my husband Greg and I went to France for the first time, and I sketched the Eiffel Tower. Sketching one of the world’s most famous icons felt like a dream come true – the ultimate in urban sketching. But although I can’t resist sketching world-famous icons whenever I’m fortunate enough to see them, for me, urban sketching is much more than that.

Urban sketching is a tree with its middle chopped away to accommodate Seattle’s ubiquitous power lines. It’s about a couple of women chatting over coffee, or about workers roofing the house next door. It’s about an excavator filling a hole where a cherry tree once stood. Or the Tibetan monastery I drive by frequently that I couldn’t resist because it’s bright orange. Urban sketching is a string band performing at a local farmers’ market – or perhaps in Villefranche-sur-Mer.

Celebrating the mundane as well as the famous is what urban sketching is all about. My sketches are not necessarily about “special” moments; they are moments made special because I sketched them."

Tina has been editor of Drawing Attention since 2013 and now serves on the Urban Sketchers editorial board. See more of her sketches on her blog, on Flickr and on Instagram.

Meet the Correspondent: Pete Scully > Davis, Calif.$show=/search/label/Pete%20Scully

"I am from urban north London, but now live in urbane Davis California. I sketch, I write, sometimes do things and go places and my name is Pete.

When not Davis, I sketch Sacramento, San Francisco, London, or anywhere else I happen to be. I tend to erase people and cars from my cities, but I'm starting to get over this.

Davis: calm, old-fashioned, progressive, quirky, very very hot in the summer. I use micron and copic pens, with watercolour."

• Pete's blog.
• Pete's art on Flickr.

Meet the Correspondent: Suhita Shirodkar > San Jose, Calif.$show=/search/label/Suhita%20Shirodkar

"I was born in Mumbai (Bombay) and lived in different parts of India until I moved to San Jose, California, where I now live.

Travel inspires my art, but, traveling or not, I try to view the world around me as a traveller would; so whether I’m capturing a moment of calm on the banks of the Ganges in India, or sketching over coffee at my local coffee shop, I aim to look deeply, and with wonder, at both the everyday and the exotic, the old and the new.

I love color. My sketch kit consists of Extra Fine Sharpies (the fact that they bleed into the paper as soon as they touch it works really well for me—it forces me to work super-quick), a small set of Prismacolor pencils and a little watercolor travel set".

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

Dancing Lines: Ink Drawing on Location, People, Places and Things

Worlds collide and ink will splatter as Urban Sketcher Kiah Kiean Ch'ng, from Penang, Malaysia and Melanie Reim, from New York, USA, join forces to deliver a power-packed workshop where line drawing will rule. The passion and process of drawing architecture and people and the combination of both, with KK’s infamous, hand-crafted twigs and Melanie’s trusted cartridge pens will be explored over two days in and around Seattle, Washington.

Following a meet and greet and artist presentations of their work, we’ll explore the markets and other locations of Seattle with a respective focus on the majesty of architecture and the crowds of people in action through the eyes and expertise of our instructors.

Premises of composition, mark-making and calligraphic line will be explored through two days of workshops. Participants will have an opportunity to work with KK and Melanie each for a day as they each offer two equally strong but different ways of dynamic picture making and storytelling. Drawing directly onto the page, working with happy accidents of ink splatter and evoking mood through a variety of weight of line and tone illustrate the way that our lines dance across the page- Come dance with us as we draw Seattle!

Learning Goals:

Ch’ng Kiah Kiean

The Line:
• Discovering how to use the twig and brushes as mark makers
The Environment:
• Seeing the architecture of the city with a different eyes
• Understanding the art of leaving negative space in your composition
• Strategies for applying limited color to your sketches

Melanie Reim

The Line:
• Using the Pentel brush pen and cartridge fountain pen to create bold and light calligraphic lines
The Environment:
• Blocking out people and crowds
• Big Picture composition
• Thumbnails
• Shapes
• Mark making
Workshop Schedule:

Friday Night July 14th, 2017
Location: Daniel Smith Store Seattle (4150 First Avenue South, Seattle, Washington 98134)
05:30 - 07:30 pm: Dinner, meet and greet, keynote presentations

Saturday July 15, 2017
Location: Pike Place Market

Group A - with KK
Group B - with Melanie

09:30 – 10:00 am: Preparing tools (twig / ink / sponge)
10:00 – 11:00 am: Part I: lines only sketch (introduction to the tools and quick demo follow by directed exercises)
11:00 – 12:00 pm: Part II: lines and tone sketch (introduction to “dry wash technique” and quick demo follow by directed exercises)
12:00 – 12:30 pm: Review
12:30 – 01:30 pm: Lunch Break on your own
01:30 – 02:00 pm: Full demo
02:00 – 04:30 pm: Part III: lines, tone and watercolour wash sketch (tips on how to add watercolor wash and follow by directed exercises)
04:30 – 05:00 pm: Review
05:00 – 05:30 pm: Combined demo with Melanie

09:30 – 12:00 am: Introduction to environment, tips for blocking out people, short talk on anatomical landmarks. Looking for shapes to design people and capture crowds
12:00 – 12:30 pm: Review
12:30 – 01:30 pm: Lunch Break on your own
01:30 – 04:30 pm: Using premises from a.m., begin to look for big picture composition, thumbnails, shapes, mark mark-making
04:30 – 05:00 pm: Review
05:00 – 05:30 pm: Combined demo with KK

Sunday July 16th, 2017
Location: Fremont Ballard, or Seattle Center or TBD.

Group B - with KK
Group A - with Melanie

Same Schedule as Saturday with final group gallery instead of demo.


Price for workshop $275.00.
CONTACT: to check space availability and register 
Participants can pay via PayPal in US Dollars and email registration forms.
Maximum number of Participants 30 (minimum 20)
All levels welcome.

Cancellation Policy:
In the event of too few registrations, all monies will be refunded less Pay Pal Fees. Cancellations up to May 15, 2017 will be refunded the full amount minus a cancellation fee of $35.00; 50% will be refunded if the cancellation occurs after May 15 to June 15, 2017; and no refunds will be granted after that date. Thank you for your understanding.

About the Instructors:

Ch’ng Kiah Kiean, born 1974 in George Town, Penang. He was trained in architecture from Universiti Sains Malaysia and loves art, design and photography. He is a blog correspondent of Urban Sketchers and also one of the founder members of Urban Sketchers Penang. He published Sketchers of Pulo Pinang in 2009 and Line-line Journey in 2011. Find out more of his work at

Melanie Reim, MFA Illustration, travels with a sketchbook never far from her side. Reim lives in NYC where she a Full Professor at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Her illustration career spans thirty years and her visual journals and teaching methodologies have been the subject of domestic and international articles and featured in numerous on books on drawing and urban sketching. Her exhibition record includes solo and group shows in the US and around the world. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian in Washington, DC, the US Air Force Art Collection.




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