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SKETCHBOOK: a creative tool and a way of life that celebrates design and drawing as vital ways to see and value culture, to discover ideas, and to envision a better world.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Learning from Sagar in Barcelona

A few months before the Barcelona symposium, I saw some amazing work by a Barcelona artist named Sagar Fornies.  He was handling light in a beautiful way, and when combined with his loose drawing style the overall effect seemed magical to me.  I was fortunate enough to be able to attend his workshop at the symposium, and benefited a great deal from the teaching of both Sagar himself and his talented translator, our longtime Urban Sketchers friend Miguel Herranz.

Below is one of Sagar's drawings of L'Escola Industrial in Barcelona; it's the drawing that caught my attention before the Symposium and compelled me to seek him out.  Under Sagar's drawing is my on-location drawing of a university courtyard, produced over about 45 minutes during Sagar's workshop (I further darkened the foreground and added color to the roof later).  You'll note it's very different from my typical style.  I hope to be able to incorporate some of the lessons learned into my everyday work.  So here's to Sagar and Miguel...muchas gracias!

A drawing of L'Escola Industrial by Sagar (from his book, Barcelona: Redescobrint L'Elxample

My own location sketch of my view from the second floor balcony of a university courtyard produced during Sagar's workshop.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Return from Barcelona!

I've just returned from Barcelona, where I taught sketching workshops at the 4th International Urban Sketching Symposium.  It was a fantastic experience; an uplifting event in a beautiful, life-affirming city.  150 participants were registered from 30 different countries; workshops were taught by instructors from across the globe.  In addition, scores of sketchers who weren't able to register for the sold-out event came to the city anyway to draw and to be a part of this "happening."

My workshop was called "Life Between Buildings: Capturing the Energy."  It dealt with drawing city life in the public realm...going beyond an "accurate rendering" to conveying the exuberance of urban life in the streets and plazas of great cities.  So, yes, I went to Barcelona to hang out in bustling plazas, draw, share my passion with like-minded sketchers from all over the world.  Seriously, does it get much better?

I'll be posting drawings and photos from Barcelona and the Symposium here over the coming days...come back, check out the latest posts, and leave your comments...Cheers!
This is my sketch of the famous Casa Mila by the architect Antonio Gaudi, who I call "the Jimi Hendrix of 20th centery architecture." I did the line drawing on our first afternoon in the city, and returned on our last morning to add color.

This line drawing of Gaudi's La Sagrada Familia was done on our first afternoon in Barcelona, with several sketchers from France.  I added color later in the studio, trying to capture the uplifting exuberance of this amazing sight.

Working with workshop participants in Barcelona's bustling main plaza, the city's "outdoor living room."