Tag Archives: urban sketchers

lunch with the portlands

PDX urban sketchers
Last Saturday in Portland the PDX Urban Sketchers met for their regular sketchcrawl, this time down in Goose Hollow. I was having a nice lie-in, so I joined them for lunch at the Goose Hollow Inn where they shared their beautiful sketchbooks. They are an inspirational bunch, the Portland sketchers, many of whom I have met before on numerous occasions. I sketched (see above: Vicky, Kalina and Andrea) and had some nice warm soup, and I got my new pirate hat. Yes, you heard that right, a new pirate hat – I was in Portland to be a pirate and go to the Swashbuckler’s Ball you see, and say “be” instead of “am” occasionally. Kalina was kind enough to order it from DressLikeAPirate.com (yarrr!), and it’s a most excellent hat – there’s even a picture of me wearing it on the USk Portland website! Yarr indeed me old landlubbers.
A Roadside Attraction

That evening, I dressed like a pirate (yarr) and walked through Portland before finding the eclectic sketcher’s dream of a place called A Roadside Attraction, where I met up with fellow pirate sketcher Kalina for some pre-Swashbuckler’s Ball sketching. To be honest though, there was almost too much to sketch! I did what I could, but this was a place that needs several days to sketch in any justice. And so, on to meet the pirates! To be continued…

meet the portlands

PDX Floyds
One of the reasons I wanted to go back to Portland was to sketch with the Portland Urban Sketchers, partly because I have at least met several of them before, and partly because I love their work on USk PDX. We met at Floyd’s Coffee in Old Town, and I got a breakfast burrito and sketched People. I traditionally only sketch People when those People are also Sketchers – it’s like it’s ‘alright’. Still, I need the practise, and I’ve been doing a lot more of it lately. Anyway, it was good to catch up with some familiar faces – Linda, Alanna, Kalina, Vicky, Pascale – and meet some more, such as Greg (who I actually drew in Lisbon but never met), Deb, Andrea, Marta, Marco, Cassie, Angelika, Gary (hope I’ve not missed anyone out!) – and of course, to watch them sketch. One thing I know about myself is that I don’t tend to sketch quite as much when I am talking, but when I meet other sketchers I do love to talk. About pens, mostly. And Magneto.
sketching with the pdx urban sketchers
After Floyd’s I took a brief interlude to sketch in the rain (see the sketch at the bottom, drawn by Skidmore Fountain in very wet conditions), before rejoining the group at Old Town Pizza, an interesting old place full of things to look at at draw. It was a fun afternoon with lots of conversation, and I am glad to have gone. A shame we couldn’t have all sketched outside, but the rain really was pouring, and it was nice and friendly inside.
PDX Urban Sketchers
Portland Urban Sketchers (with me)
Portland sketchbooks

Here’s to the next time!

PDX rainy skidmore

urban sketching london!

A couple of weeks ago I organized a sketchcrawl in London (“Let’s Draw London!”) around the Temple and Fleet Street parts of London, one of my favourite areas. It was organized alongside the recently launched Urban Sketchers London, and was also picked up by members of the Meetup group ‘Drawing London on Location’. My hope was that a fair few London sketchers would come out and come together, and boy did that happen!

Let's Draw London May 26, 2012: start

Above is part of the group that met at 10:30 outside Temple station. I passed around sign-in sheets, and all in all we had more than 50 sketchers on this sketchcrawl, and we all set off in groups or individually to draw London. What a sunny day it was too! I met several of the London Urban Sketchers, including Katherine Tyrell who thankfully took some great photos to record the day – you can see them on this post on USk London.

I printed out fliers for everyone (I had just enough!), and provided a little hand-drawn map with interesting sketchable spots, though really anywhere is interesting. Here it is:

It was great to walk around and see so many Londoners out sketching, and also to identify each other by those carrying the little fliers I made. Below are some of my photos, taken at the end meeting at Gough Square. I wanted to meet up at the statue of Dr.Johnson’s (Samuel not Boris) cat, Hodge. We decided to do the now common laying-down of the sketchbooks on the ground, all around the cat, for everyone to admire. I found this common at the USk Symposia, and while it’s a good and fun way to display them all, it’s also very humbling (and a little scary) seeing my little drawings beside so many great pieces of art! I still prefer the one on one sketchbook exchanges at the end of a sketchcrawl, and it was nice to do some of that with people. Many of us reconvened into the Olde Cheshire Cheese for a pint, some sketchbook viewing and lots of sketching talk! I’ll post my sketches in the next post, but in the meantime…

Let's Draw London May 26, 2012Let's Draw London May 26, 2012Let's Draw London May 26, 2012Let's Draw London May 26, 2012Let's Draw London May 26, 2012Let's Draw London May 26, 2012

To all who came, THANKS for coming! I did meet some truly fantastic London sketchers whose work I have followed for years (especially nice to meet Olha Pryymak, her work is beautiful), met many more whose work I will now eagerly follow, but missed meeting some others whose work I love. Not enough time! Even an old schoolfriend, Joan, from my art class 20 years ago came – I had only seen her once since leaving school so it was nice to catch up. And excitingly, I was joined by my two long-lost (and Facebook-found) cousins Claire and Dawn, who are both superb artists. We haven’t seen each other since we were kids but have grown up with an avid love of drawing, so what a great way to reconnect at last. Everyone I spoke to had a great day, and some others on the sketchcrawl are returning this Saturday to follow the same route again (wish I could join them!). In the meantime, if you’re London based or nearby, you may wish to keep an eye on the regular meetings of…

And finally, check out the newly set-up Urban Sketchers London flickr group, which any London based sketcher can join and where many great sketches and photos from the sketchcrawl are posted.

…I really must do this again!

sketching the urban sketchers (part 3)

isabel fiadeiroagnes bolley

Final batch of Urban Sketcher portraits…I wish I’d sketched more! Quite a lot of people who afterwards I was thinking, oh wish I’d sketched him, wish I drawn her; maybe next time! The two above though were done in the very early hours of sunday morning (see the time-stamp!) at Cafe A Brasileira, after the Symposium had ended. I was out late there sketching with Liz Steel, Paul Wang and Lee Peng Hui, when Isabel Fiadeiro and some others came in, sat down and straight away it was a sketch-off! A bit like gunslingers in the Old West in an old saloon, Urban Sketchers are quick on the draw. (How cheesy, I can’t believe I just said that…)

(Above Left): Isabel Fiadeiro, USk correspondent in Nouakchott, Mauritania (but originally from Portugal), one of the organisers of this year’s event, I met her last year in Portland. (Above Right): Agnes Bolley, an artist from France.

luis ruiznina johansson

(Above Left): Luis Ruiz, USk correspondent from Malaga, Spain. It was a highlight of the symposium for me to meet and sketch with Luis, his subtle but powerful work is among my favourites. (Above Right): Nina Johansson, USk correspondent from Stockholm, Sweden. I’ve followed Nina’s work for years, very influential. I took her workshop ‘Unfinished Business’, though I never got a chance to actually sketch with her.

inma serranoisaac

(Above Left): Inma Serrano, USk Spain correspondent from Sevilla. She had this tiny sketchbook made into an earring that sketchers contributed to (I drew a tiny fire hydrant, what else!). Sketched at lunchtime near Rua da Bica, she was sketching me at the time. (Above Right): Isaac, from Spain; I didn’t get to speak to him other than to ask his name but he had a great profile to sketch! 

ea ejersboliz steel

(Above Left): Ea Ejersbo, USk correspondent from Aarhus in Denmark, sketched while out at dinner with other urban sketchers and her husband Reza (a great guy!). I’ve followed Ea for years, I really enjoy her drawings and the fact she’s from Aarhus, as I visited that city a couple of times many years ago and loved it.  (Above Right): Liz Steel, USk correspondent from Sydney (alongside Borromini Bear, not seen in this picture). Liz is one of the most well-known Urban Sketchers and it was great to sketch and hang out with her in Lisbon, having first met her in Portland last year.

daniella rodriguesmarina grechanik

(Above Left): Daniela Rodrigues, USk Portugal sketcher from Lisbon who I spoke to during the Light of Lisboa workshop. Finally, (Above Right): Marina Grechanik, USk correspondent from Tel Aviv, Israel, sketched at the same dinner as the pistures of Ea and Liz. Marina even tried to draw holding the pen the way I do!

And that’s it! Well, I have more sketches from Lisbon to be posted, but these are all the people I drew. Some I drew in my watercolour Moleskine, but most were drawn in the London/Lisbon ‘Volant’ Moleskine, the small red one that looks like a passport.

sketching the urban sketchers (part 2)

miguel herranz (freekhand)rolf schroeter

More attempts at quick portraits of some world-renowned urban sketchers at the Lisbon Symposium…

(Above left): Miguel Herranz, aka Freekhand, Urban Sketchers correspondent in Barcelona whose distinctive work I’ve enjoyed for years. He did a great sketch of me! (Above right): Rolf Schroeter, the amazingly prolific USk correspondent from Berlin, sketched at Kaffeehaus in Rua Anchietta.

jason dasflorian afflerbach

(Above left): Jason Das again, aka Floodfish, USk correspondent from Brooklyn. This was sketched during the correspondent’s dinner. (Above right): Florian Afflerbach, aka Flaf, USk correspondent in Cottbus. I’ve followed Florian’s amazing work for years and so was delighted to finally meet him in person. I’ve said it before, more red-haired/glasses-wearing urban sketchers is a good thing! This very quick sketch is best viewed with 3D glasses…

saidya heynickxgerard michel

Allez les Belges… (Above left) Saidja Heynickx, from Aarschot in Belgium, sketched during lunch on the first day. Always nice to meet more Belgians! (they always laugh when I tell them I lived in Charleroi!) (Above right) Gerard Michel, one of my sketching heroes, who I first met and sketched with last year in Portland, and who I sketched here in Lisbon during one of the morning welcomes.  

More sketches of sketchers to come!

sketching the urban sketchers (part 1)

I sketched a lot of people in Lisbon, more than I usually would. It’s nice sketching other urban sketchers, especially those you have followed for a while, as you’re capturing them in the flesh in your own little sketchbook. Some were done out at dinner, or lunch, or while sketching, or in the lecture hall. Here are some…

gabi campanarioevening in bairro alto

(Above left): Gabi Campanario, founder of Urban Sketchers and USk correspondent from Seattle. (Above right): Jason Das, USk correspondent from Brooklyn, New York, sketched while eating dinner in the Bairro Alto district.

pedro cabraltia

(Above left): Pedro Cabral, USk correspondent from Lisbon. I hadn’t met Pedro before, he is a really nice guy. (Above right): Tia Boon Sim, USK correspondent from Singapore. Both sketched during the correspondent’s dinner. I met Tia last year, she’s an absolute inspiration.

alvaro carnicerocristina urdiales

(Above left): Alvaro Carnicero, USk correspondent from Cordoba, Spain. (Above right): Cristina Urdiales, USk Spain correspondent from Malaga. Both sketched during the correspondent’s dinner. Great to finally meet these two as I’ve enjoyed their work for ages.

alanna randallomar jaramillo

(Above left): Alanna Randall, USk Portland correspondent from Portland, sketched at the morning meet-up. I met Alanna last year in Portland, so it was nice to see her in Lisbon. (Above right): Omar Jaramillo, USk correspondent originally from Ecuador, sketches all over (most recently Newfoundland, previously UAE and Sicily), sketched at dinner at Kaffeehaus on rua Anchietta. Really enjoy his watercolour style!

More to come!!!

he went to california, hearing that everything’s warmer there

old city hall on F street

Spread 5 of the Davis Moleskine, a building I’ve sketched before: the Old City Hall on F Street (now part of the restaurant Bistro 33). I sat outside the Paint Chip over a couple of lunchtimes last week and drew this. It was over a hundred degrees outside, which I am sure you will agree was mental for this time of year. Feels hot in the drawing too, doesn’t it. That’s living in California for you. I hear it’s freezing back in London.

The project continues…