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

Drawing 100 People in One Week Challenge

[By Don Low in Singapore] Thanks to Marc Holmes, Suhita Shirodkar and Liz Steel who initiated this to get sketchers to sketch 100 people in one week or 5 days. This year is the third and began from April 8 to April 12. Just a week to focus the sketching attention of individuals to people, figures, portraits or human activities in different approaches and mediums. The requirements do not restrict sketches to be done on-location but also include sources like video and reference pictures. The objective is to have fun with drawing people without inhibition and there after building our confidence in this aspect of sketching. For mine challenge, I chose to sketch people from life observation and from images. I will only post those done from observing from life here.

Day 1 was done at Starbucks. Since most do not move much while sitting in a cafe, it was easy to capture their gesture and even their faces. I did not try to get their likeness but simply an essence of how they look. It was also fun to get a group rather than just individuals. A group would show how they interact and from drawing, you may get their dynamics too.


There was a Chinese lady who say just next to me. She was busy looking at her computer. I stole a quick look at it and saw that she was a financial planner. She has a very good looking side profile so I couldn't resist drawing her. She probably has noticed me looking in her direction but I tried to minimise my head movement so not draw attention to myself. I could say I got her likeness pretty well, after failing the first time. For these sketches, I used a Pentel Pocket brush pen for the lines, and Tombow brush pen markers for the colours and tones.


Day 3 (59/100) – I was walking around and looking for subjects to draw in the library when I was invited to try out VR goggles and applications while passing by an event room. I have not really tried any VR applications yet so I gave it a go. After which I continued wandering around the library to find my subjects to draw. Most people were too engrossed with their books and smart devices and usually would remain motionless within a minute, enough to capture the essence of their gestures and movement. I was almost using a single line to draw. This will allow me to see the overall shape and gesture as a whole. Details were added later as the line meander around the form. The colours were added with Tombow markers later.


The above sketch was done with a brush pen again. Since I was comfortably seated with a good vantage point, I decided to make a more elaborated sketch of the sushi bar and the diners.

Day 4 - I was in a painting class. The students became my subjects. It was fascinating to see everyone adopting a different posture to draw and paint. It was also pretty enjoyable to capture these on a sketch. I sketched this digitally on my iPad with Procreate. I started with a generic screen size for a canvas, and gradually expand it as I draw. The new Canvas Resize function on Procreate made this possible. This is by far one of the most useful updates beside the most recent support for TEXT that was launched on Tuesday 16 Apr 2019. I used a pencil brush tool named "Storybook Pencil" that was created by George. For more info, visit the link here -

Image may contain: 4 people, including Bala Murugan, people smiling

Day 5 - I was escaping the scorching sun, after sketching at a boardwalk into a cafe that was beautifully decorated with artificial foliage and lights, and wonderfully chilled in a/c. I was back in using the brush pen again but was sketching on an A3 paper instead of my A5 sketchbook. This time a lot more liberating since the drawing surface was much larger.

Later that day, I hung out with some friends at another mall and drew the remaining figures on my sketchbook, thus completing the 100 people challenge. Maybe the next challenge should be 100 Buildings in One Week.

Here's something I did prior to this challenge in another class. Girls sitting and painting elegantly on the easel or on the bench.





USk News$type=blogging$ct=0$au=0$m=0$show=


[Workshops Blog]$type=two$c=12$ct=0$m=0$show=