Saturday, 25 April 2015

Cafe sketching

Cafe sketches are a recurring subject in my sketchbooks. Here are two sketches i did in the past month, both from the same cafe in town:

I am often asked how people react to being sketched, and my overwhelming experience is that they just don't notice. Even when i am sitting quite close to them, or directly in their line of sight, most people will not notice that i am drawing them. People are generally absorbed in their own little world, even when they're just sitting at a cafe by themselves.

Sometimes, if i am in the mood for it, i will approach the subject of my drawing afterwards, and show them the result. Reactions generally fall into three categories: the impressed and flattered (about 2/5ths), the hesitantly curious and slightly unsettled (another 2/5ths), and the indifferent to mildly affronted (the remaining 1/5th).

When i'm sketching abroad the fractions change dramatically - Danes are generally relaxed and polite, but many are also very reserved towards strangers, bordering on unsociably shy; but as soon as you get a little further South in Europe people tend to be a lot more open and gregarious, and i can count on more openhearted (and less polite!) reactions to my drawings.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Commuter sketches

Drawing on the bus home from work:

Sakura Micron ink pen and Pentel ink brush pen in a Moleskine sketchbook, 5-10 minutes spent on each - people will just get off anytime they please!

Friday, 17 April 2015

Ceramics class

During my stay in Jaffa-Tel Aviv, Marina brought me along to her ceramics class at the studio of illustraor, ceramic artist and urban sketcher Nathan Halpern. These are some sketches i did of the participants.

Nathan's studio is in a small shelter in a residential area of northern Tel Aviv. It is a quiet, intimate space, and i enjoyed shetching people as they worked on their pieces.

I visited Nathan's studio twice during my stay, and got to do a small double figurine - my first go at working in clay since i was a child.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015


When i went to Jaffa, i didn't bring a lot of sketchbooks with me, in an attempt to keep the weight of my suitcase manageable; but i did bring one of the homemade accordions made last year (see this post). I used the sketchbook for the sketch outings with the local Tel Aviv chapter of Urban Sketchers, and opted to use only ink in it - a 0.4 mm Sakura Micron and a Pentel brush pen, to be precise. This is how the book turned out, with drawings added over the course of two outings:

I passed the template for the homemade accordion on to some of the local sketchers, so maybe these accordions will be popping up on the Urban Sketchers Israel blog in the near future :)