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.
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!
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:
Our Heart Bomb sketches of the threatened heritage Ring Houses at the University of Alberta:
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”.
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).
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:
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: