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Monday, May 25, 2020

Urban Sketchers are Alive and Well!



How do you arrange a meeting that can accommodate people from all over the world? You do your best. And that's how I "attended" the second ever Urban Sketcher's admin meeting at 6:00 AM on Sunday May 24 on Zoom. I did my best.

Once I got into the meeting, I could see there were a lot of folks online. I scrolled through the five screens of participants—that’s five screens with 20 participants each screen—and saw many I knew. There were sketchers from Brazil, Spain, Indonesia, Hong Kong, England, New York, Florida, and everywhere in between. It felt like a family reunion!

The goal was to share ideas and challenges and to inspire chapters to stay active during the pandemic. Several admins shared activities and ideas they have done in their groups.

USk Singapore, for example organized a “Circuit Sketch Break” for 28 days from April 7 through May 4. They posted 28 prompts for sketching from home, had sketchers submit their work and had a drawing for a prize at the end. They have since extended the submission deadline so people can continue to be inspired to sketch.

USk Dubai launched a “sketch at home campaign” with weekly prompts and submission instructions. They plan to publish the sketches in a journal. Here is a sample of their prompts:
Week one: Food
Week two: Through the window
Week three: My partner in lockdown

Several others shared what their group has been doing or not doing. They shared their successes and frustrations, asked questions of others and basically just hung out sopping in the vibe of being among so many active sketchers again.

At the end we had the traditional throw-down, or in this case a hold-up, where sketchers held their work up to their camera so we could see. Many had sketched the meeting; some just held up a sketch they had done recently. It was all quite fun and made me realize how much I miss the USk family.  

I have felt pretty sluggish about sketching during this lockdown period. The USk Talks have been fun. (Thank you Stephanie Bower, for your talk and challenge last month). And the USkTalk challenges have been interesting, although I’ve only done a few of them. But this meeting was like a good cup of coffee. Time to wake up! In Thurston County where I live we will be able to gather in groups up to 5 people beginning in June. Hopefully King County will be able to do the same pretty soon. Until then, I hope you are all safe. And keep sketching!

Hold-up of our zoom call sketches. 

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