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Seattle Urban Sketchers

Seattle, WA

USk Seattle's 10x10 Workshop Program is back with an exciting lineup of instructors and workshops! The 10x10 program is a worldwide initiative to offer educational workshops wherever sketchers live. Launched in celebration of Urban Sketchers' 10th anniversary in 2017, the program brings a variety of courses on urban sketching techniques taught by talented local instructors in their home cities.

Registration begins March 16, 2019. The cost for each 3-hour workshop is $60 through our early bird date, April 1, 2019. After April 1, the price is $70 per workshop. Registration will be processed by the event management website, Brown Paper Tickets. For workshop details and other information, please visit:

Important: The email address you provide when you register through Brown Paper Ticket is our only means of communicating with you. We need your current email so that your instructor can contact you with information about where to meet, possible last-minute changes, or other updates. If you prefer that we use a different email address for communication purposes, please contact us at

Program Goals
1. Improve your skills by drawing from life, on location.
2. Learn how to compose and design your sketch on the page.
3. Experience the advantages of group learning and sharing.
4. Become confident sketching on location so that you can continue sharing stories from your city, one drawing at a time.


Sketching People from the Inside Out

April 13, 2019 10:00 AM

We'll work with a few ways to study people to develop natural-looking drawings. We will use gesture, cross-contour and context to study the human form in action. By working from the inside out and the outside in, drawing people becomes more about connection than production. Our aim is not to produce technically accurate drawings but satisfying and spontaneous impressions of people.
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Sketch 'n Chill: No-Stress Interior Sketching

April 20, 2019 10:00 AM

Whenever I visit local coffee shops for my weekly sip 'n sketch sessions, I try to savor each moment while I enjoy my cup of mocha, but I don't always have a lot of time. Therefore, it is important for me to capture the essence of the space quickly, without worrying about accuracy and getting bogged down by the details. We will work on honing the skills needed to capture the essentials, by incorporating fast, confident lines and reducing the scene to its basic elements -- shapes, layers and lines. We will practice exercises to become comfortable in creating bold and confident lines, to discern basic shapes in a scene, and compose the final sketch. Participants may choose to use pen, marker or pencil to create black and white line drawings. This intermediate-level workshop is geared toward sketchers who have had prior experience sketching on-site. A basic knowledge of perspective is helpful but not required.
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People in Places

May 11, 2019 10:00 AM

While my other workshop, People from the Inside Out, focuses on people as the main subject of a sketch, this one focuses more on context showing people in places. We'll work on strategies for including people in context; simplifying the human form by using mostly brushes and watercolor starting with the background (context); and negative space to hold people in the place.
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First Steps in Visual Journaling

May 18, 2019 10:00 AM

Cars, people, buildings and street furniture -- let's try the easy way first! Take your first steps into urban sketching using simple tools and practical tips that anyone can follow. I will demonstrate, then you try. Perfection not required. Combine basic drawing, writing, lettering shortcuts and ephemera for a fun day on location with your urban sketchbook. Adapt your new skills to fill your nature and travel journals, too.
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From Afar: Rendering Atmospheric Perspective in Watercolor

May 25, 2019 10:00 AM

Like many urban sketchers, I enjoy communicating detail from up close all the way to vanishing point. While the artist naturally must determine a focal point in the scene, the background must not be forgotten or ignored. Suggested detail, color choices in atmosphere, and contrasting brushstrokes in the background bring contextual specificity to plein air painting. However, this layer must be kept in compositional balance with the foreground. My workshop will teach watercolor techniques to convey atmospheric perspective, using counterpoint techniques in value structure and shape. For this intermediate-level workshop, students should be comfortable with wet media, working with it frequently for at least six months prior to taking the workshop. They should be able to execute watercolor techniques like wet-into-wet, dry-into-wet, and wet-into-dry. Additionally, they should be able to compose a scene without struggle.
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Dry Air: Atmospheric Perspective in Mixed Media

June 08, 2019 10:00 AM

Learn to emphasize depth in a scene by using the natural strengths of different drawing tools, from a simple ballpoint pen to graphite to ink! This class will instruct techniques to push back and pull forward different layers in a composition, using several different methods of creating contrast, alone and/or in tandem. Atmospheric perspective theory and counterpoint techniques will be discussed as means to this end: light, soft, less detailed areas usually tend to recede, while dark, hard, and detailed objects will come forward. We can elevate a straightforward interpretation of a scene by playing with these elements. Once we learn the basic rules, exaggeration can create an atmospheric, playful or dramatic sketch. Participants will find new ways to think about their tools. This workshop will be half about composition, half about technique. For this intermediate-level workshop, students should have a solid grasp of drawing from life, especially drawing complex scenes. They should be skillful enough at translating life onto the page that we can have fun mixing media!
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A Media Exploration: Charcoal, Ink + Graphite

June 15, 2019 10:00 AM

Students will explore graphite with a brush, ink with a stick, and luscious charcoal with a blending tool. We will describe space with different techniques while truly seeing the scene presented using blind and modified blind drawing methods. Each medium will be demonstrated by the instructor.
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Chaos, Busyness and the Whole Kitchen Sink: Get Everything into Your Sketch

July 13, 2019 10:00 AM

Do you get hung up on all the chaos, don't know where to start, and fail to capture the bigger image that you wanted? We'll look at strategies for loosening up, using your intuition to guide you and knowing how to sketch everything.
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Urban Sketching with a Ballpoint Pen

August 24, 2019 10:00 AM

The ballpoint pen is one of the cheapest and most ubiquitous writing instruments. It is also a versatile drawing tool that can bring much pleasure to urban sketchers of all skill levels. From lush trees and dense vegetation to sharply defined architecture or candid portraits, any subject matter can be artfully rendered with a simple ballpoint pen. In this workshop, students will learn how to build a ballpoint sketch from the ground up, starting with soft contours and gradually adding halftones to create volume and depth. This workshop is ideal for sketchers who value accuracy over speed or are simply looking for an uncomplicated way to make sketches. All skill levels welcomed.
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Seattle Urban Sketchers
Tina Koyama, Jane Wingfield

Seattle, WA 98502



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