Urban sketching for as long as I can remember
I have carried a sketchbook on my travels for over thirty years, ever since I could buy my own pencils and paper. I was sketching on location long before the term “urban sketching” ever existed – before the internet, let alone mobile phones!
At the beginning I didn’t draw that often, and I was the queen of the sketchbook with only one sketch. I was such a perfectionist that I was scared to make a mistake, but when I did sit down to draw it really helped me to remember that special moment in time. Somehow drawing helped me soak in the environment around me like nothing else ever has – the sounds, the smells, the traffic and people going past, the shapes, colours and temperature. Even when my memory fails me on so many other things, looking at an old drawing brings that moment right back. To me, drawing is my version of mindfulness, of truly being in the moment.
Urban sketching has also opened my world in other ways. When you sit and draw in public, people come up and speak to you. It is such a rich experience with so many positives. I hope my stories inspire you to pick up your own sketchbook 🙂
Australian artist, urban sketcher, librarian with a long term project to draw all of Brunswick Street, Fitzroy. Prints available through my website.