March 2021 sketch themes

Thanks to Yvonne Rezek for posting our March sketch themes:

Historic buildings are often demolished, erasing from view and memory the heritage of a city. With several properties currently under threat of destruction, USkE admins have decided to designate March overall, as Historic Buildings month.

For March 6, sketch a Ring House at the U of A, or if you have already sketched one (for our Feb 13 Sketch In and Around) try the Faculty Club (now called the University Club), which is a mid-century historic building adjacent to the Ring Houses.

For March 13, to accommodate our sister-city sketch project, sketch an historic structure of your choice.

For March 20, the university farm barns will be our subject. More info plus a map will be posted.

Stay tuned for the March 27 prompt.

With warmer weather returning, we encourage everyone to sketch on location or from your car. You can sketch at any time that is convenient but please post your sketch no later than 6:00 pm on Mondays to have it included in the weekly blog post.

As always, prompts are optional. They are offered to inspire you to sketch on location in real time. Other subjects are always acceptable as long as they conform to the USk manifesto.

Have fun and be safe out there! 

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Sketch In & Around Feb 27, 2021

Our sketch prompt for the week was the historic Strathcona Public Library, the oldest library building in the Edmonton Public Library system. This inspired some beautiful interpretations.

We will be sketching more heritage buildings in March, so watch for the prompts!

Sketch by Brent Baim
Sketch by Beth George
Sketch by Diane Smarsh
Sketch by Julie Daly
Sketch by Marlena Wyman
Sketch by Yvonne Rezek
Sketch by Debbie Ha
Sketch by Karen Boschee
Sketch by Cary Brown
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Abha Hoedl
Sketch by Lorie Taylor Leech

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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Sketch In & Around Feb 20, 2021

We had a great virtual turnout of 18 sketchers this week for our “Music” theme, and many were sketches from before Covid affected the music scene so severely. Thanks for your music love and memories, everyone.

Our theme for this coming week is the historic Strathcona Public Library, so get your sketchbooks out to honour this stately home for books!

Here are our music-lovers and others sketches:

Under the canopy in Hawrelak Park, 2019 – sketch by Janet E Smith
Pre-Covid music at Whyte Avenue Art Walk – sketch by Luise Mendler-Johnson
Pre-Covid music at St. Albert Botanic Park – sketch by Luise Mendler-Johnson
Pre-Covid music at the Empress Pub – sketch by Karen Wall
Pre-Covid music at the Citadel Theatre – sketch by Karen Wall
Cellist Josephine van Lier at the 2015 Early Music Festival – sketch by Marlena Wyman
2019 Karaoke Boston Pizza – sketch by Pamela St Laurent
My daughter singing this afternoon – sketch by Abha Hoedl
My husband is an amazing musician and this is his music station in our house – sketch by Beth George
The music corner of my living room – sketch by Brent Baim
Instruments on the shelves in my partner’s music studio – sketch by Angie Sotiropoulos
Getting out of the house driving solo listening to music turned up loud. Sometimes singing along. A welcome escape some days! – sketch by Karen Boschee
My quest for Urban Sketchers music theme led to looking for birds which led to ravens that flew away which led to birds at a feeder I couldn’t get close to which led to a moose eating which led back to town to Aurora School where I saw delightful birds made by school children attached to a chain link fence around the garden planters. The end – sketch by Pamela St Laurent
A new build nearby, I walked there and stood on the sidewalk to sketch, finished indoors. This build is nearly completed which will be music to someone’s ears! – sketch by Lorie Taylor-Leech
Winter sunrise Whyte Avenue – sketch by Doug Dawson
Freezing fingers sketch of the view from Wilbert McIntyre Park last weekend. I was wise enough to not attempt this in pen in -30C but not wise enough to bring fingerless gloves or hand warmers – sketch by Debbie Ha
This beautiful building caught my eye – sketch by Karen Dee
Sketch by Marty Stark

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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Sister City Sketch and Ring Houses Heart Bomb, Feb 13, 2021

We had a multiple valentine for this Sister City Sketch. The theme was Bernard Callebaut (or another chocolate shop) and we loved Calgary Urban Sketchers‘ fabulous sketches.

Another theme appeared due to the sudden announcement by the University of Alberta that they are planning to demolish some of the oldest historic buildings on campus – the Ring Houses, built in 1911. Around Valentine’s Day every year, the Edmonton group Heritage Forward chooses a threatened Edmonton heritage building for the Heart Bomb event to try to bring awareness and hopefully halt demolition. This usually happens in person, but due to the pandemic, this year’s event was virtual and some members of Urban Sketchers Edmonton joined in to draw heart-bombed sketches of the Ring Houses at the U of A. #heartbomb #yegheritage

This coming week’s theme is “Music”, so find a musical urban sketching subject! As always, you can also just sketch whatever urban sketching subject might inspire you.

Here are our heartfelt sketches:

Sketch by Yvonne Rezek
Sketch by Brent Baim
Sketch by Abha Hoedl
Sketch by Lorie Taylor Leech
Sketch by Lorie Taylor Leech

Our Heart Bomb sketches of the threatened heritage Ring Houses at the University of Alberta:

Sketch by Marlena Wyman
Sketch by Karen Boschee
Sketch by Janet E Smith
Sketch by Brent Baim
Sketch by Yvonne Rezek
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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Sketch In & Around, Feb 6, 2021

The theme for this week was “Bread, baking, bakery”, and our sketchers created some warmth and yumminess to keep the polar vortex at bay.

One of our administrators, Yvonne Rezek, reminds us that themes are always optional, but if you wish to take part this coming week, it is another Sister City Sketch with Calgary Urban Sketchers. The theme for the Valentines weekend is to draw the Bernard Callebaut chocolate shop at 124 Street and Jasper Avenue. This is to simulate a sketch-out where we all sketch the same place at the same time as we did in pre-COVID times.

Urban Sketchers adheres to the manifesto of sketching on location in real time and doesn’t endorse sketching from photographs. However, recognizing the restrictions on gatherings due to COVID, USk chapter admins discussed this as a temporary alternative on Zoom recently. The USk position has not changed but allows that local chapters can choose to relax the rule for the duration of pandemic restrictions. It was generally agreed that in sketching local sites, even from photos, folks are exercising their creative muscles, contributing to their own mental health, and still telling local stories through art. So, I encourage you this week to go to the Callebaut location to capture a sketch in real time. But if that isn’t possible, (it’s bloody awful cold out there) find a Google photo to sketch from. Please mark such sketches as “from a photo”.

Here are our delicious baking sketches:

Sketch by Karen Davis
Sketch by Yvonne Rezek
Sketch by Julie Daly
Sketch by Karen Boschee
Sketch by Abha Hoedl
Sketch by Jo-Anne Farley
Sketch by Lorie Taylor Leech
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Karen Wall
Sketch by Erin Dawn
Sketch by Joanne Van’t Hoff
Sketch by Marlena Wyman
Sketch by Marlena Wyman

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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February Sketch Themes

News from one of our admins, Yvonne Rezek:

Recognizing that pandemic restrictions on gatherings worldwide limit artists’ ability to draw on location together, Urban Sketchers (the mothership organization) has relaxed the first item on the manifesto. That is, to draw locations from direct observation. Which means that for the duration, we will be sketching together through photographs! Yippee!

Beginning this month, there will be two themes, as usual. And two prompts for a specific location. You can do a Google image search or take your own photo (or draw on location, of course) but we will all be drawing the same place, just as we would if we were physically together.

So without further ado, here are the February themes.

(Note: Calgary friends, I hope you can join in for the Valentine’s Day theme for our Sister City Sketch since you have several Callebaut locations to choose from). 

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Sketch In & Around, Jan 30, 2021

This was a fun challenge: sketching in a different style than what we are used to. It could be in the style of another artist or sketching with materials that we don’t normally use.

Here are the delightful results!

Sketch by Yvonne Rezek in the style of Pat Southern-Pierce, an artist and urban sketcher from England
Sketch by Janet E Smith in the style of Edmonton artist, Karen Bishop
Sketch by Janet E Smith
Sketch by Karen Boschee in the style of illustrator/kids comic book author Kaj Hasselriis
Sketch by Anna Nowakowski Hayes in the style of Piet Mondrian’s early work
Sketch by Lorie Taylor Leech in the style of Gustav Klimt and inspired by Bernie Sanders’ mittens
Sketch by Beth George in the style of Van Gogh
Sketch by Marlena Wyman in the style of Henri Matisse
Sketch by Anna Nowakowski Hayes using grisaille technique
Sketch by Debbie Ha using watercolour
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent using Posca markers
Pamela St Laurent’s sketches of burlap-wrapped bushes inspired by stone sculptures
Sketch by Abha Hoedl – sketched with glasses on and colour added with glasses off
Sketch by Angie Sotiropoulos
Sketch by Gordon Ramsey

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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Sketch In & Around, Jan 23, 2021

The theme for this week was “your choice”, and sketchers chose winter and warmth – opposite concepts in one way but complimentary in another. For this coming week, try sketching in another style. Maybe study the work of an urban sketcher you admire and try to adapt their style to your sketch. Take a look at the Urban Sketchers main website for lots of different urban sketching styles. It can also be an urban sketch in the style of any artist – maybe Van Gogh! As long as your sketch fits the definition of urban sketching, it’s all good. The style could just simply be a change in materials. If you usually use black ink and watercolours, try out coloured pencils or markers. If your art involves detailed work, try loosening up and getting messy. When you post your sketch, if would be great if you could mention your artistic influence. As always, an urban sketch is drawn on location and tells a story. (No still lifes or portraits, etc.) Also, as always, have fun!

Here are our choices for sketching this week. Congrats to Abha Hoedl for creating our Sketch of the Week with her warm, cozy fireplace view:

Sketch by Adha Hoedl
Sketch by Janet E Smith
Sketch by Marlena Wyman
Sketch by Karen Boschee
Sketch by Janet E Smith
Sketch by Jason Wase
Sketch by Gordon Ramsey
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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Sketch In & Around Jan 16, 2021

The prompt for this week was “Look up” for those who decided to sketch along with the theme. We normally tend to draw what is in front of us but there are other viewpoints we don’t always consider.

The coming week is “Your choice”, so find what inspires you and sketch away.

Here are some great sketches to look up to! Yvonne Rezek’s collection of vases on top of her kitchen cupboards is our sketch of the week.

Sketch by Yvonne Rezek
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Karen Boschee
Sketch by Karen Wall
Sketch by Angie Sotiropoulos
Sketch by Marlena Wyman
Sketch by Karen Wall
Sketch by Marty Stark
Sketch by Gordon Ramsey
Sketch by Abha Hoedl
Sketch by Anna Nowakowski Hayes
Sketch by Debbie Ha
Sketch by Karen Davis
Sketch by Diane Jacqueline Plasse
Sketch by Braden Pihowich

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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Sister City Sketch #3, Jan 9, 2021

The theme for our third Sister City Sketch was “Construction”. There were some great interpretations, and some free-spirit urban sketching too. That’s always fine, the themes are just there if you want to join in.

For this coming week, the theme is “Look Up”. Remember to keep it an urban sketch – not just cloud-watching!

You can see the great construction theme sketches from our Calgary Sister City Sketchers here.

Our sketch of the week is by Luise Mendler-Johnson who sketched a beautiful interpretation of the theme with her construction of a reading list of books from the library:

Sketch by Luise Mendler-Johnson
Sketch by Karen Boschee (Inukshuk construction)
Sketch by Abha Hoedl (shelves of construction materials for arts & crafts)
Sketch by Luise Mendler-Johnson (constructing an array of her new art supplies)
Sketch by Lorie Taylor Leech (quilt under construction)
Sketch by Marty Stark (pillow quilt top under construction)
Sketch by Marlena Wyman
Sketch by Debbie Ha (constructing a pile of clean dishes for drying)
Sketch by Pamela St Laurent
Sketch by Karen Wall
Sketch by Rebecca-Lily Semotiuk
Sketch by Lana Anderson
Sketch by Aeris Osborne
Sketch by Gordon Ramsey
Sketch by Terry Elrod
Sketch by Anna Nowakowski Hayes

Posted by Marlena Wyman

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