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

Pushing How to Look - PYSB Sevilla 2018

 Pushing How to Look in Sevilla: Let’s look to the day to day.

Seville was founded as the Roman city of Hispalis. It later became known as Ishbiliya (Arabic: إشبيلية‎)[2] after the Muslim conquest in 712. During the Muslim rule in Spain, Seville came under the jurisdiction of the Caliphate of Córdoba before becoming the independent Taifa of Seville; later it was ruled by the Muslim Almoravids and the Almohads until finally being incorporated into the Christian Kingdom of Castile under Ferdinand III in 1248.[3] After the discovery of the Americas, Seville became one of the economic centres of the Spanish Empire as its port monopolised the trans-oceanic trade and the Casa de Contratación (House of Trade) wielded its power, opening a Golden Age of arts and literature. In 1519, Ferdinand Magellan departed from Seville for the first circumnavigation of the Earth. Coinciding with the Baroque period of European history, the 17th century in Seville represented the most brilliant flowering of the city's culture; then began a gradual economic and demographic decline as silting in the Guadalquivir forced the trade monopoly to relocate to the nearby port of Cádiz.
The 20th century in Seville saw the tribulations of the Spanish Civil War, decisive cultural milestones such as the Ibero-American Exposition of 1929 and Expo '92, and the city's election as the capital of the Autonomous Community of Andalusia.

(Text extracted from Wikipedia)


In this session will look at the space around us, the streets, the squares and the activities, the people and we will capture on the page that sense of space of being present here and now, between the sky and the ground, in Sevilla.
We will look up to the sky to see the contours and outlines of the buildings, we'll feel their weight and proportions and rhythms to make them present on the ground. We will learn to feel the space, what is free space and was is built up or occupied and transfer this to our drawings.
But space is not empty but occupied with people and activities of interest to telling the story of a place. Urban sketching is about telling stories. We will work in colour to draw both setting and story, drawing out what interests us.  We will work in watercolour and other colour media to show the story in full colour.

Starting with quick watercolour washes, we will play at highlighting the setting or the action within the overall picture. We will start with colour exercises to set the street scenes where we can overlay people’s activities as they happen.

Then we will reverse our approach, capturing in colour people’s action on the street, and later outlining the setting/the scene of what they do.

From there we can progress to more complex scenes of activity or busy architecture.
The colour will serve as the background to the drawing scene. Line work and detail can then be selective to help us focus where we want the sketch attention to go.
Colour blocks will help us break the scene into manageable areas and to avoid worrying later on about spoiling a neatly drawn picture.

WHAT IS ESSENTIAL?  (Inma Serrano)

“I look around me.
I see trees, cars, buildings, people passing by...
I sit down seduced by the idea of sketching everything that surrounds me. I want to try to explain where I am, but also how I feel in this place. I would love to be able to reproduce in my sketchbook all the life around and the joy I experience now.
I stop just to look and analyze but I find really difficult to capture the ESSENCE of this place. There are too many things here. I feel confused, incapable... There are even things I do not know how to draw: people moving all the time, the perspective, the light and shadows...
Wheredo I start? What do I have to draw or leave out? How could I manage all of this stuff inthis little sketchbook? How do I have to structure the page?
The fear of the blank paper is here again.
I don´t want to lose the ESSENTIAL information...

What is really ESSENTIAL?...

"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; WHAT IS ESSENTIAL IS INVISIBLE TO THE EYE. Only children know what they are looking for."

(A. de Saint Exupery)

Less is more…

When I think of my own sketchbook, the sketches I do like the most, I always find three key things in them to be able to say: “This is a bold piece of work”:
- The sketch describes the place where it was made
- I managed to convey my own personal look of this place
- The people who see it can understand my way of looking and give their own opinion.

I prefer to "half-finish" my sketches. That is: to elaborate in detail some parts and to “spoil” others with lines and scribbles . I like it when chance changes  the drawing process and chaos is present.
But I also like to leave place to guess and define what is not drawn in a precise and meticulous way. For that reason, there will always be parts of the drawing that are not well defined, empty places, abstract shapes.
My feelings are sometimes captured in words, rhythms, unreal colours.
I love to join reality and imagination as a part of the game of guessing, not only where I am but also how I feel or what do I have to say about that place.

In my sessions, the focus will be on:
  • Studying open and closed lines and how can each one contribute to our sketch.
  • Practising with colour and lines as elements that can set the view.
  • Understanding internal rhythms, force and dominant lines in the shapes.
  • Look for the synthesis and understanding how "less is more"
  • Experiencing the colour balance. 
  • Light and shadows and blocks of colour for composing. 
  • Learning to stop before it´s too late. 
  • Use all these tools to develop our own style of drawing and expression.


The best way to capture moments is to pay attention.

What captures your attention
Always, when we arrive to a place we first filter all the information through ourselves. Visual information is right in front of us: colours and shapes. Nevertheless a place is not only this it is also felt through sounds, smells and sensations that we perceive a place.

All along the first session we are going to experiment the place taking our feelings as a starting point and also being conscious of the whole experience from us.

What we know
Second session is devoted to the ideas, to the information, that part which gives an extra point of view to he places, then we qualify and make a combination with feelings and information, always through our “eyes”.
In my sessions, the focus will be on:
  • Working on the idea of storytelling following the classic rules as a starting point.
  • Training on developing threadlines, paying attention to details and those insignificant matters.
  • Bringing together our look and others.
  • Gaining knowledge from the experience on site and with later information.
  • Sorting out the whole information changes our approach and viewer’s/reader’s.
  • Storytelling and development of ideas.

Overall Learning goals
  • Pushing participants out of their comfort zone, at their own level. From beginners starting to sketch to more confident participants, we aim to teach you something new and push you outside your boundaries, helping you experiment.
  • Looking and finding stories of everyday life
  • Losing the fear to draw people, drawing people on the go 
  • Gain confidence drawing buildings, feeling the space in the city
  • Understanding what is essential for you when starting to draw a new place
  • Improving watercolour and drawing technique from basic principles.
  • Using and trying different approaches - line drawing with pens and pencils,watercolours and colour in different media. 
  • Experiment with different techniques and ways of approaching a live sketch situation, helping you find your own self expression.
Workshop Schedule:
Course runs from 11 to 13 October 2018 with a welcome meeting on Wed 10 evening and a sketch meet with the local urban sketchers on the Sun 14

WED 10 Oct

8 pm
Welcome at our base Tramallol

9,30am -10,30am
Welcome and get together at our base Tramallol
Morning workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
1,30pm - 3,30pm
3.30pm - 6.30pm    
Afternoon workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
Evening all groups meep up and share


9,30am -10,30am
Morning get together at our base Tramallol. Pin up exhibition from previous day’s work
Morning workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
1,30pm - 3,30pm
3.30pm - 6.30pm    
Afternoon workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
Evening all groups meep up and share

SAT 13 Oct

9,30am -10,30am
Morning get together at our base Tramallol. Pin up exhibition from previous day’s work
Morning workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
1,30pm - 3,30pm
3.30pm - 6.30pm    
Afternoon workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
Evening all groups meep up and share

SUN 14 OCt

10,00 am to 11,00 am
Meet at Tramallol from 10 for coffee and open exhibition
Sketch meeting - open to all
11,00 am to 1,00 am
Sketchcrawl with Usk Sevilla local group

Workshop map:
Sevilla workshop map here.

30 attendees maximum, 18 minimum. Any level of drawing experience is welcome
Travel and accommodation
You need to arrange your own accommodation. To help you decide area, see the map of hte workshop here. Suggested sites to look for a range of accommodation: or
A list will be provided for participants - we will be working with water soluble media, ink, watercolours and pencils. Generally bring what you draw with normally.
Registration fee
£ 250 - (£200 concessions - 20% discount for students or unwaged -with proof of concession status) or if paying in Euros 285 (225 euros for concessions).

To book
e-mail Isabel: for a registration form.
(Payment can be via internet bank transfer or paypal)
Cancellation policy: All fees are refundable if cancelled more than 6 weeks prior to commencement of course (up to 29 August 2018). Bank charges will be deducted for the refund in the case of an attendee cancellation. If cancelled after the 29 August up to to one week before the start of the course, a cancellation fee of £50 (60 Euros) will be retained. No refund will be possible one week before the course.In the event of too few registrants, all monies will be refunded.

About the instructors
Isabel Carmona studied in UK where she practices as an architect and artist in Newbury, Berkshire. Her passion is watercolour, easy to carry around and sketch on the go and likes experimenting and mixing media to get interesting effects. Isabel started sketching in 1993 as part of her architecture training and continues to this day. She joined Urban Sketchers Spain in 2011 and USK London in 2014 where she runs the Facebook group and organises some of their Let's Draw events.
As an artist she is part of West Berkshire and North Hampshire Open Studios scheme and joined the Oxford Printmakers Cooperative in 2013.

Inma Serrano
Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Seville, specializing in Painting (1996) and Design and Engraving (2000). For the past fifteen years she has been involved in the area of art education and has taught courses in Applied Creative Photography, Painting and Drawing. She has made presentations and workshops related to “travel diary” and “drawing in location” for the University and for other organisations and groups in and out of Spain. As a teacher, she has led sketching workshops for Urban Sketchers Symposium in Santo Domingo (2011), Barcelona (2012), Singapore (2015) and Porto (2018).  She currently works at a Secondary School in Sevilla in which she teaches Visual Arts and Drawing. She has also worked as an assiduous illustrator in some journals. Inma’s artistic interest focuses  mainly in the field of illustration and graphic diaries. She has been involved in some national and international exhibitions too.

Sketching in the streets is essential in her life because it allows she to zoom, in an ingenuous and almost childish way, the people and the things around.

Swasky is a Catalan-Spanish artist and art teacher from Barcelona. He holds degrees in Fine Arts and Audiovisual Communication from Barcelona universities and also attended Nottingham Trent University in England. A trained photographer and videographer, Swasky shifted his interest to drawing as a way to show the world after joining the Urban Sketchers online community. Swasky’s first book, “Voltant per Sants" ("Going around Sants"), was just published in January of 2012. Since then he has published 3 more books: Enjoy Gaudí (2013), Catalan Wine landscapes (2014) and Hola, Miró!!! (2017). He has led workshops and courses about urban sketching and storytelling in Barcelona and for Urban Sketchers Symposium in Santo Domingo (2011), Manchester (2016) and Chicago (2017). He currently is organizing and teaching workshop in Pushing your Sketchinig Boundaries with Isabel Carmona since 2014, where more than 200 sketchers have enjoyed the experience of drawing on site and share a 3 days of intense work.

Pushing your Sketching Boundaries
FB: @Pushingyoursketchingboundaries
IG:  @pushingyoursketchingboundaries




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