Friday, January 15, 2016

Orlando Sketch Tour, Feb. 13

Orlando Sketch Tour
Saturday, February 13 at 10am - 5pm

WHAT: Orlando Sketch Tour offers visitors and local artists a chance to slow down, see and sketch the true Orlando. Thor from Analog Artist Digital World and Kelly Medford a plein air painter from Rome Italy will be your guides for this full day sketching tour around the Mennello Museum of Art.

WHEN:  Saturday, February 13, 2016 10am to 5pm

WHERE:  Mennello Museum of American Art, 900 East Princeton Street, Orlando, FL, 32812. We will meet at 10am at a small gazebo just to the east of the Mennello Museum on the lake shore.

HOW: All skill levels are welcome you can be a full time artist or a weekend dabber and you will sill pick up something to help spark the rewarding trend of documenting your life through sketching.

Each student gets a complete Urban Sketching Kit that includes hardbound sketchbook,
travel sized watercolor palette,
pencil and eraser,
micron pen,
Pentel water brush
all enclosed in a zippered carrying case.

WHY: The Indie-Folkfest happening on the 13th puts a twist on the traditional Orlando Folk Festival turning it into a Valentine’s Day-themed family folk picnic that features local music, art and food. They partnered with East End Market for food, Joseph Martens for the music lineup, as well as local bars to throw a fun-filled picnic in the beautiful Sculpture Garden of The Mennello Museum of American Art. Approximately 3,000 guests – including plenty of dogs and kids – spread out picnic blankets, make Valentine cards and enjoy a daylong lineup of music against the backdrop of Lake Formosa in the winter sunshine. The sketch tour will be part of a day dedicated to Music + Art + Picnic + Love.

WHO:  Thomas Thorspecken (Thor) taught traditional hand drawn animation for 8 years at Full Sail University in Florida. He now teaches at Elite Animation and some of his courses include: Urban Sketching, Drawing Fundamentals, Character Design and Traditional Animation. Tom has also led 1 and 2 day urban sketching workshops for the public for all levels of urban sketching and leads the monthly drink and draw in Orlando along with sketching the daily events around the city.

Kelly Medford is a full-time plein air painter and watercolorist living in Italy and runs Sketching Rome Tours since 2012 where she teaches simple and fun sketchbook journaling and urban sketching techniques in various locations around Rome to locals and tourists with a varying levels of experience. She also teaches watercolor sketching intensive workshops several times a year in both Italy and the U.S. She most recently co-taught with Simo Capecchi and Caroline Peyron at the Urban Sketchers Workshop in Ischia in October 2015 in Italy.

At 10am before the folkfest gets started, Kelly Medford will give a lessson in composing landscape scenes. Her insights in to light, color and environment should get everyone accustomed to the pastoral lakeside setting. After we all finish our first sketch, we'll break for lunch and then Thor will give tips on how to populate your sketches. The focus will be on adding multiple figures into to scene to add depth and tell a story. We will then spend the afternoon creating multiple sketches of performers on the stage, or patrons enjoying the festival. The sketch opportunities are limitless. Kelly and Thor will circulate to offer tips and suggestions.

Tickets: The Sketch Tour costs $125 for the full day of sketching.
Tickets are available on Eventbrite

Thursday, January 14, 2016

GOOD BONES | USk Sketching Workshop May 13-15, 2016

GOOD BONES  | USk Sketching Workshop 
May 13-14 + 15, 2016

Architectural perspective and watercolor sketching workshop with Stephanie Bower
at Pike Place Market, Seattle, Washington USA

Workshop description:

Good sketches start with Good Bones! In this workshop, you’ll learn how to set up the bones of a great architectural sketch, starting with a practical understanding of perspective and finishing up with an intro to watercolor tools and techniques. And on Sunday, we’ll get to join the Seattle Urban Sketchers for their monthly Sketchcrawl. 

Learning goals:

Held at the iconic Pike Place Market in the heart of Seattle, this workshop offers a true instructional class on sketching. On Friday and Saturday mornings, we’ll work indoors from PowerPoint lessons that introduce you to perspective concepts and the basic process for creating a sketch.  In the afternoon, you’ll learn how to apply the morning’s concepts to on location sketching in downtown Seattle.

On day three, you’ll have the opportunity to put everything together when we join the Seattle Urban Sketchers’ monthly Sketchcrawl!

            Good Bones| Day 1 | May 13:  Perspective
·       Learn perspective basics and a simple step-by-step process to construct an architectural perspective sketch, how to build the sketch in layers
·       Learn what to look for when sketching perspective on location—how to find your eye level and VP’s
·       Learn how to measure proportions and relationships of spatial elements

            Good Bones | Day 2 | May 14:  Perspective + Watercolor
·       Introduction to basic watercolor tools and techniques, using a simple triad of colors
·       Learn how to use watercolor to enhance the sense of space in your sketches

            Good Bones | Day 3 | May 15: Sketchcrawl, half day
·       Put your new knowledge into practice by joining the monthly Seattle USk sketching group on Sunday morning  

Workshop Instructor:

STEPHANIE BOWER is a Seattle-based architect, architectural illustrator, teacher, watercolor painter, and traveling Urban Sketcher.

Stephanie graduated in both Architecture and Interior Design and worked as a licensed Architect in New York City before gravitating to architectural illustration. 

She has taught architectural sketching for over 20 years--for a decade in NYC at Parsons, in Seattle at UW and Cornish College of the Arts, at the 2014 Urban Sketchers International Symposium in Paraty, Brazil, and a lecture on perspective at the USk Singapore symposium. 

Stephanie is a signature member of the Northwest Watercolor Society. In both 2013 & 2012, she was honored with the prestigious KRob award for Best Travel Sketch, in 2013 she received the Gabriel Prize fellowship for 3 months of sketching in France, and the following year was awarded the NIAUSI 2014 fellowship for a 2-month project in Italy. 

Stephanie teaches “Perspective for Sketchers” online at, and is the author of the forthcoming book The Urban Sketching Handbook: Understanding Perspective.   

            Architectural Illustration Website:

Workshop Schedule: 

            Morning INDOOR SKETCHING
            8:30 arrive at the Pike Place Market meeting rooms, coffee
            9:00-12:00 instruction and sketching
            12:00-1:00 lunch break in The Market
            Afternoon OUTDOOR SKETCHING downtown
            1:00-2:30 sketch together as a group
            2:30-3:30 sketch on your own or together with assistance
            3:30-4:00 assemble for final crit and review

            10:00-12:30  You have the opportunity to put it all together by sketching alongside 
                     Seattle Urban Sketchers, location to be determined
            12:30-1:00 meet Seattle sketchers and review sketches!
            No charge for this day, of course, as sketching with Urban Sketchers is free and
            open to all!  We can arrange carpools to the location if necessary.

Supply list:
Instructor will email supply list to registered participants.

Workshop fee:

$200 for 2 full days of instruction, in classroom and on location.  Sketchbook will be provided to all participants.
Payable in full by check to “Stephanie Bower, Architectural Illustration” by April 15, 2016.
Mail to:
            Stephanie Bower, Architectural Illustration
            2411 9th Ave. W.
            Seattle, WA  98119

Contact Stephanie ASAP at to reserve a spot.  First come, first served.  Waiting list will be created.

Cancellation policy:
In the unforeseen event the workshop is cancelled, all fees will be reimbursed.
If you have to cancel your participation,
            up to one month before, all fees reimbursed.
            up to two weeks before workshop, 50% fee reimbursed.
            less that two weeks before the workshop, 10% of workshop fee reimbursed.

Number of participants: 12 min - 15 max

Good Bones is open to any level of experience, but targeted to beginners and sketchers who want to improve their basic sketching and understanding of perspective and watercolor.

Thanks for your interest in Urban Sketchers workshops!

Line to Color Workshop in Seattle April 22-25, 2016

Like any building, a sketch needs a good foundation. In this intensive workshop, architectural drawing instructors Frank Ching and Gail Wong will walk you through clear steps covering the complete process of making a sketch on location, from the time you draw the first line until you apply the last touch of color. Meeting at various locations in Seattle, the workshop will consist of a 2- hour keynote pizza dinner, 2 full days of sketch education and a 3.0 hour final sketch crawl with input from your instructors.  This event will be conducted over a 4-day period starting Friday evening and ending Monday mid day. 

We will start with a Friday afternoon meeting at Daniel Smith’s Store where we will have a manufacturing tour of Daniel Smith’s Watercolor operations led by the owner John Cogley.  Find out how the exquisite Daniel Smith Colors are created and made.  Katherine Taylor will talk about their Primatek Colors and you will be able to practice mixing and using colors at their mixing table.  From 5-7 pm we will have our Meet and Greet evening presentation/  pizza dinner with Frank and Gail.

Have fun learning in the industrial environment of Gas Works Park and the quirky artist neighborhood of Fremont.  Sketching sessions will start on Saturday morning, at a either Gas Works Park or Fremont, with two small groups working simultaneously. Each group will have the opportunity to work with both Frank and Gail for one full day. Frank will focus on line drawing as the basis for a sketch, considering the selection of a point of view, and establishing the basic perspective structure for a drawing. Gail will focus on the application and use of color in a sketch. She will introduce watercolor and brush techniques, how to add value and color to capture the quality of light,  sense of spatial depth and accent the focal point of your sketch.

On Sunday groups will switch instructors and locations.

Monday,  will be the first opportunity to meet as a whole group and work to put everything to together.  Test out what you have learned, get help and feed back from the instructors.  We will select a site from various iconic Seattle locations.  Either Pike Place Market, Olympic Sculpture Park, Seattle Center and the Space Needle or South Lake Union Park and Museum of History and Industry.

Learning Goals:
The Line:
1. Selecting a point of view: Detail, Fragment, Building, Setting

2. Composing the page: Where to start, how to proceed

3. Establishing spatial depth: Near and far
4. Learning the basics of perspective
Using Color:
5. Familiarity with the use of watercolor and brush techniques
6. Seeing and using tonal values to create depth and capture the quality of light

7. Strategies for applying color and limiting your palette
8. Learning how to mix colors

Workshop Schedule:

Friday April 22, 2016
Location: Daniel Smith Store   
               4150 1st Avenue South
               Seattle, WA 98134

2:30–-3:30 pm  Manufacturing Tour of Daniel Smith Watercolor operations
3:30-4:00 pm Learn about Primatek Colors Katherine Taylor
4:00-5:00 pm Play at the Mixing Table
5:00-7:00 pm Keynote Presentation / Meet and Greet Pizza dinner

Saturday April 23, 2015

Location: Fremont/Gasworks Park
Group 1 Line with Frank - Fremont
Group 2 Color with Gail - Gasworks Park

9:00 am–12:00 pm    Guided instructions, short demos and Exercises
12:30–1:30 pm  Lunch Break on your own

1:30–2:30 pm  Instructor Demo
2:30-4:30 pm   Sketch time with instructor help

4:30–5:00 pm Review
6:00-7:30 Drink and Draw (Location to be determined.  This is optional but always fun…food and drink on your own)

Sunday April 24, 2015  
Group 2 Line with Frank - Fremont 
Group 1 Color with Gail - Gasworks Park

9:00 am–12:00 pm    Guided instructions, short demos and exercises
12:30–1:30 pm  Lunch Break on your own

1:30–2:30 pm  Instructor Demo
2:30-4:30 pm   Sketch time with instructor help

4:30–5:00 pm  Review
6:00-7:30  Drink and Draw (Location to be determined. This is optional but always fun…food and drink on your own)

Monday April 25, 2015
Location TBD: Pike Place Market, Mohai, Seattle Center, Olympic Sculpture Park
9:00-12:00 pm  Sketch crawl with guiding input from Frank and Gail
12:00pm-12:30 pm  Final group gallery and pictures

Workshop Registration and Cost:
Price for workshop $285.00 via paypal

Contact Gail Wong  for registration forms, space availability and paypal link.

Maximum number of Participants 30 (minimum 18)
 All levels welcome

Registration Deadlines:

Registration and payment due by March 1, 2016.

Cancellation Policy:

In the event of too few registrations, all monies will be refunded less Pay Pal Fees (If paying by Paypal). 
 Cancellations up to March 22, 2016 will be refunded the full amount minus a cancellation fee of $35.00.  50% will be refunded if cancellations occurs after the 22nd to April 8, 2016 and no refunds after that date.

About the Instructors:

Frank Ching is Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington, having recently retired after over 35 years of teaching. He is the author of numerous books on architecture and design, all published by John Wiley & Sons. His works have been translated into over sixteen languages and are regarded as classics for their renowned graphic presentations. Awards that Professor Ching has received include the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Design from The Nottingham Trent University; an AIA Institute Honor for Collaborative Achievement; and a National Design Award from the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.
You can see Frank’s work at:

Gail Wong is currently a part-time Lecturer at University of Washington and has taught design drawing and sketching for over 20 years. She was teaching under the leadership of Frank Ching for 16 years prior to his retirement. She is also a licensed and practicing architect in the State Washington focusing on residential design as well as architectural illustration. She was a blog administrator/coordinator for the Seattle Urban Sketchers and is currently Workshop Coordinator of the Urban Sketchers Workshop Committee and an Urbansketcher's correspondent.
You can see Gail's work at:

Monday, January 11, 2016

Sketching with Dry Twig & Chinese Ink Workshop

Sketching with Dry Twigs & Chinese Ink
See the city in monotone black & white and sketching it using handmade dry twigs with Chinese ink as main medium. Leaving white or blank space doesn’t mean nothing, in traditional concept of Chinese ink painting, blank space is also part of the drawing. I will teach the participants how to leave empty space in their sketch creatively.

Learning Goals
Sketching with non traditional tools but handmade twigs. Participants will experience the inconsistent line works created with the twigs. They also learn the three important elements: dots, lines and shades in black and white sketch.

Workshop Location
Lisbon, Portugal

6, March 2016

Workshop Duration
10h30 - 13h00: morning session (venue: Miradouro N. Sr.ª do Monte)
13h00 - 14h30: lunch
14h30 - 17h00: afternoon session (venue: Alfama)

Workshop Schedule
Morning Session
30 mins: introduction (tools and sketching techniques overview)
15 mins: preparing the sketching tools
30 mins: demo (line works only sketch)
60 mins: part I: line works only sketch
15 mins: review
Total: 2h30

Afternoon Session
30 mins: demo (lines + shades sketch)
90 mins: part II: lines + shades + ink/dry wash sketch
30 mins: review
Total: 2h30

Maximum Number of Participants
25 pax

Minimum Number of Participants
15 pax

Registration Fee
General registrations: 50,00€
USk Portugal members: 45,00€

For registration or more info, contact Mário Linhares at

Supply List
  • Your normal sketching tools 
  • Drawing Paper: Saunders Waterford Hot Presseed (HP) and Cold Pressed (NOT) 300 gsm
  • Twigs / Wood Branches: soft / hard wood, cut to pencil size
  • Pen knife
  • Small Bottles: as ink container
  • Gauze: cotton type
  • Oil Painting Brushes: flat / round head, different sizes
  • Dish Washing Sponge: with container

Meet the Instructor
Ch’ng Kiah Kiean, born 1974 in George Town, Penang. He was trained in architecture from Universiti Sains Malaysia and loves art, design and photography. He is a blog correspondent of Urban Sketchers and also one of the founder members of Urban Sketchers Penang. He published Sketchers of Pulo Pinang in 2009 and Line-line Journey in 2011. Find out more of his work at

Some example of his works:

20130720 Aerial View of Madrid
Size: 28 x 38 cm x5
Media: Chinese ink on paper

20140829 Rio Pereque Acu, Paraty
Size: 28 x 38 cm x4
Media: Chinese ink on paper

20151010 sTigun Cafe, Nagore Road, Penang
Size: 28 x 76 cm
Media: Chinese ink on paper

20151018 Kuan Yin Temple, Burmah Road, Penang
Size: 28 x 76 cm
Media: Chinese ink on paper

20151115 Shih Chung School, Love Lane, Penang
Size: 28 x 76 cm
Media: Chinese ink on paper

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Pushing How to Look - Pushing Your Sketching Boundaries in Newbury

Contact: e-mail Isabel: for information and a registration form.

Newbury Workshop. A fresh look to the day to day.

Newbury is a market town with loads of history, formed after the Norman conquest as a new borough, with its economic foundation on the 16th century cloth trade, which declined after English Civil war (late 16 century) and the two battles of Newbury.  The town partially recovered in the 18th century as stop on the route to Bath but declined again when the railway made journeys quicker.   The 20th century brought some interesting protest stories, such as the Women’s peace camp story against nuclear weapons been sited at  the nearby Greenham Common american air base or the Newbury bypass opposition where protesters occupied trees on the route of the bypass.  And technology has also brought modern industry to Newbury, which is the home of the global headquarters of Vodafone.

Isabel has lived in Newbury for over 10 years now and settled here in the local artists and creative community where she takes part of the annual Open Studios scheme. In the last two years she has been part of the City Arts Newbury project that aims to convert an old methodist chapel into a community art hub.  This is where we will be based.

The excitement of this workshop for her is to share the everyday beauty of the place where she lives, there are opportunities for sketching everywhere, if you look for them, in the market place, in the renovated museum area, in the shopping streets, by the canal, in the old “city” of Newbury, there are stories happening now and we will search them and draw them, finding a fresh look out of ordinary.  



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.

ICA_LetsGo.jpg  BigIssue1.jpg

We will start with quick watercolour washes setting the overall picture and then we will add more paused drawing on top, to firm up what is it what we want to say.
The difficulty of sketching is to know where to start and deciding how much to fit in.  
We will start with some quick colour sketches of people on the street, setting the scene of what they do. We can then progress to more complex scenes of activity or busy architecture.
Colour blocks will help us break the scene into manageable areas and to avoid worrying later on about spoiling a neatly drawn picture.
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.



Look around. There is a big square full of buildings, cars, people moving…
I'm looking forward to start sketching everything to tell where I am, wishing to explain in my sketchbook the life that is around me.

I sit and analyse the place.
I want to start just now but it´s difficult… There are too many elements…Which one do I choose to start? What to draw? What not to ? How can I compose the page? How to structure space?
How to perform this synthesis to capture the essence of what I want to say?

If I fill the page with many elements I can loose all the information and interest. If I process all in the same way, it can get boring and monotonous.

When I think of my own sketchbook, the sketches I do like the most, I always find three essential 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. This 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.

However, as the basis of any improvisation, the sketch must have a solid compositional structure which helps to work in this way, allowing us to express what we mean, then to synthesize and draw madly.
This base is acquired through experience but can be thought of in advance.
This workshop is an invitation to work from that structure located at the base of any design and to make your sketchbook pages really be simple but bold.  

INMA SERRANO Londres 03.jpg

In my sessions, the focus will be on
  • Understanding force and dominant lines in the composition
  • Studying open and closed structures (circle, triangle, in L, in Z, horizontal…)  and how can each one contribute to our sketch.
  • Practicing with colour and lines as elements that can set the view
  • Analyzing some compositional laws (symmetry, mass compensation) and apply them to our drawing.
  • Experiencing the use of colour from a dark background (color balance).
  • Use all these tools to develop our own style of drawing and expression


Thinking about drawing and telling stories always come to mind those old storytellers who went from one village to another with big sign full with little illustrations. I consider ourselves as storytellers in someway, we tell stories which are around us, from our daily life and from the places we visit.

My approach to a place that I want to draw and I want to capture is always the same but also with little subtleties which make the difference. First of all I try to feel which the common thread that links to my own experience to my daily life.

From the common to the difference (in the shopping centre)
Our main focus will be to use the universal plot: visitor who arrives to a new place, a place which has changed or is quite different to a familiar place. Nowadays this character in society is known as tourists, but there are plenty of examples in literature or cinema which depict them, stranger who arrive to place unknown, for instance: Ulysses, Rambo,...
We will face reality of a new place with eyes wide open, paying attention to those details, buildings, people,... which capture our attention and we will give to them over our sketchbooks, using lettering, text, layout, composition,... the right importance.

From the microscopic to the macroscopic (the bell tower)
In the second session is devoted to details, because they can link to a huge and enormous reality, we will go from the top to the bottom and will fly away with our sight.

Overall Learning goals

  • Looking and finding stories of everyday life
  • Looking at various ways of composing the sketch
  • Improving watercolour and drawing technique from basic principles.
  • Trying out different watercolour based techniques : wet on wet, dry layers, big washes
  • Experiment with colour backgrounds and different drawing surfaces
  • Developing your own style of drawing and expression
  • Drawing people on the go

Workshop Schedule

Monday 21 March

Welcome at our base City Arts
Tuesday 22 March

9am -10am
Welcome and get together at our base City Arts
Morning worskhops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
1pm - 2.30pm
2.30 - 5.30pm    
Afternoon workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
Return to City Arts Newbury - review and choose work for exhibition

Wednesday 23 March

9am -10am
Morning get together at our base City Arts. Pin up exhibition from previous day’s work
Morning worskhops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
1pm - 2.30pm
2.30 - 5.30pm    
Afternoon workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
Return to City Arts Newbury - review and choose work for exhibition

Thursday 24 March

9am -10am
Morning get together at our base City Arts. Pin up exhibition from previous day’s work
Morning worskhops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
1pm - 2.30pm
2.30 - 5.30pm    
Afternoon workshops with Swasky, Inma and Isabel
Return to City Arts Newbury - review and choose work for exhibition
Pin up exhibition work
Opening of exhibition to the public

Friday 25 March

11 to 3pm
Meet at City Arts from 9:30 for coffee and open exhibition
Good Friday sketchcrawl - open to all

Workshop map:

Newbury workshop map here.


30  attendees maximum, 18 minimum. Any level of drawing experience is welcome


We recommend the Tourist information as a first point of call.


A list will be provided for participants - we will be working with water soluble media, watercolours and marker pens.

Registration fee

£ 225 - (£180 concessions - 20% discount for students or unwaged -with proof of concession status)

To book - e-mail Isabel: for a registration form.

(Payment can be via cheque, internet bank transfer or paypal)
Cancellation policy: All fees are fully refundable if cancelled prior to 29 February 2016. If cancelled after 29 February a £25 cancellation fee will be retained. In the event of too few registrants, all monies will be refunded.

About the instructors

Isabel Carmona is Spanish but 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) and Singapore (2015).  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.

Facebook event - Pushing your Sketching Boundaries in Newbury

Pushing How to Look