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

Works exhibited in Topgoal Art Center

[By Byung Hwa Yoo in Seoul, Korea]

Byung Hwa Yoo, Women chatting under the big ginko tree in Myungryundang

Yi Ji Hyun, Scenery of Insa-dong

Kwak Yun Hwan, Street in front of Jeongdok Library

Kang Eun Young, Gwangjang Market

Han Jung Sun, Scenery of Insa-dong 

Jung Young Kyeong, Scenery at Gwanghwamun

Kang Eun Jong, Scenery of Gwanghwamun seen from the inside of Gyeongbokgung

Oh Chang Hwan, Sculpture at Cheonggyecheon

Baik Kyung Won, People at Insa-dong

Kim Hae Won, Village scenery of Samcheong-dong
Park Soo Shin, Scenery at Insadong

Yun Jae Yong, Alley at Samcheong-dong

Somali Roy, Gwangjang Market

Lee Yong Hwan, Jongno Tower seen from Anguk-dong

We took a picture after hanging works at the gallery.

Yesterday(Aug. 9th, 2017) we hung 84 works of 14 members at the Topgoal Art Center located in the Senior Welfare Center of Seoul for the 6th exhibition of Seoul Urban Sketchers invited by the gallery with the title of "My Merry Jongno". The gallery staffs asked us to draw the scenery of Jongno district as many as possible. They contacted on last week of June. So we should prepare works in Jongno during one month of July. We had three times' sketching meetups at the area. Of course some passionate sketchers went out by themselves for better works not to disappoint the expectation of the gallery and other members. It was hot or rainy so much. But we felt all the same that we should show the best we could. Hanging works we were so pleased to see all the other members' works in nice frames. And what made us happy was that the all the staffs expressed that the works looked far better than the images we sent in mails. They thanked very much about that. We thanked too for giving great chance to share our works with the senior people in such a nice place(ca.12x11m) at downtown. We will join two times' workshops held by the gallery to communicate with the senior people about the activities and principles of Urban Sketchers. Holding an exhibit is not easy at all as you know but it gives some precious lessons to all of us. Cooperation, participation, sense of belonging, and introspection will be followed. "Sweet after bitter" was true.
Today I went there on the opening day. I could see lots of people were looking at the works and talking with docents. When I said that I was one of the artists they began to ask about the location of the works saying that they had lived at that village we drew and so on...Those drawings made them recollect their past. The main purpose to communicate with the senior users of the welfare center seemed to be successful. We hope so. And hope all the participants to love urban sketching more. Thank you all!





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