For the longest time I lingered in a creative rut. After I took a small break from drawing daily drawings for more than a year (511 drawings), nothing I could think of sparked the same joy and passion as the first year felt to me. I had a goal, I had an ambition, I wanted to produce a drawing a day for a whole year. That enough was fuel to keep on going.
I just had that daily routine and lifestyle, and drawing has become part of it. However, after a while I did not notice any growth in my skills. I could copy reference drawings really well, and toss in a comic representation now and then, but it didn’t have my heart and soul anymore because my skills plateaued and time became my enemy.
I had to take a long break, and think hard how I wanted to fill in my creative past time. Drawing would be an integral part of it, but I could not really find a direction to specialize in.
It took a while, but I found out that Urban Sketching is my real passion. It is something I still need to grow in, as it is my ambition to do this everywhere. Just venturing out on long walks or bike rides and visit towns, rendering the world around me, one drawing at the time.
There is something exciting about sketching on location. It can be awkward, all revealing, uncomfortable, annoying, but most of all very rewarding and social. It puts me in the moment right then and there, learning not to care what others think.
The manifesto states;
- We draw on location, indoors or out, capturing what we see from direct observation.
- Our drawings tell the story of our surroundings, the places we live and where we travel.
- Our drawings are a record of time and place.
- We are truthful to the scenes we witness.
- We use any kind of media and cherish our individual styles.
- We support each other and draw together.
- We share our drawings online.
- We show the world, one drawing at a time.
This type of sketching is more about the way you perceive the world and want to participate in it as you’re always scanning and present to find that object or scenery that you feel connected with. It combines all senses at once. Sight, smell, sound, touch and it can be extremely mindful in an artistic way.
I purchased this book, which I now consider my bible. It introduces the reader into the concept of Urban Sketching, the philosophy and offers exercises as well as tips where to focus on. Start simple, with only one tool (a graphite pencil) and a small sketchbook. Carry it with you everywhere you go, and draw whenever you can. So I started doing this.
The book starts with pencil exercises, but quickly covers the basics and switches to pen and ink only, and watercolor.
This is day three. I am still finding the best way how to carry stuff around as I do not have many pockets nor a regular bag. I might look for a light tote bag or small rucksack, whatever helps.
On this blog I will post my most interesting drawings, and stories that come with it. I will also keep drawing regular things when time permits, but this new art form is something I can get lost in again, and it rekindled my passion for drawing.