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

A Stage And Its Stars! Urban Sketching Workshop in Galway, 13th-15th July 2017

All Of Life's A Stage! Urban Sketching Workshop in Galway, Ireland: 13th-15th July 2017

Who was it that said "All of life's a stage" ? For no one is that more true than for an urban sketcher.
The urban setting is your stage...the passers-by are the dramatis personae...and the whole is about telling a story.

This summer, join Miguel Herranz, Inma Serrano and Róisín Curé for three days of urban sketching in Galway, Ireland. Galway is a harbour city on Ireland's west coast and it's often referred to as the "most Irish" of Ireland's cities. Its history dates back to the medieval times, when it was in its heyday; vestiges of this architecture can be seen across the town, in the stone arches, the carved stone plaques and the creepy gargoyles.

Galway has an incredible atmosphere all year around. This rises to a crescendo during the summer months, when the streets are alive with buskers, and one cultural festival follows hot on the heels of another. You'll find live Irish music - usually free - in many of the pubs, and little alleyways and quiet side streets make it reward the effort of exploring.

 It is cut by waterways, both natural and man-made, with the River Corrib gushing through the heart towards Galway Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. You are never far from water in Galway, and never far from wildlife, from swans to ducks and seagulls - and even seals, who often pop their head up to watch you sketch.

There are loads of places to stay to suit every budget from hostel to quaint country hotel, and, with Galway having recently been voted "Foodie Capital of Ireland" you are sure to find something to please your palate.

We'll meet on the evening of 12th July at a lively restaurant. The next morning we will meet bright and early at 9.00, for a leisurely start at 9.30. We will work through till lunch (around 12.30) and meet up again at 2.00pm. Each evening we will finish up at 5.30pm in the Kitchen Café, for a group critique, share our stories and unwind.

Groups will range in size from 5 to about 8 - we've deliberately kept the numbers small to make sure everyone gets lots of individual attention.

The participants will be split into three groups, and each of the three days will be spent with a different instructor.

Group 1 - Inma Serrano

Inma Serrano will concentrate on the dramatis personae - the quick, lively sketch-portraits that bring any sketch to life, and their urban settings.

Group 2 - Róisín Curé

Róisín loves to exaggerate colour and show the light conditions to their best advantage...through the use of shadows, light source and a bright, fresh palette.

Group 3 - Miguel Herranz

Miguel Herranz will focus on the script - the art of storytelling. With his expert draughtsmanship and eye for detail he will show you how to pick out the elements that will bring excitement and interest to your sketching practice.

While our workshop is a primarily an educational experience, our aim is to have a great time, get to know you and send you home feeling enriched with your sketching repertoire.

The cost of the workshop is US$320 / €300. Please contact Róisín on to book and to find out anything you might need to know about accommodation etc.

We look forward to meeting you!




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