Paris, France (2018)

Capture distinct characters:
Toss the idea of a photocopy look-alike!
Develop distinct and authentic characters by freeing yourself
from the expectation to draw accurate and laboured representations.

Draw strangers!
They don’t judge – exaggerate, emphasize, and enjoy!

Doha, Qatar (2019)
Doha, Qatar (2019)
Doha, Qatar (2018)
Manitoba, Canada (2021)
Winnipeg, Canada (2021)
Tbilisi, Georgia (2019)
Nice, France (2018)
Doha, Qatar (2021)
Amsterdam, Netherlands (2019)
London, U.K. (2017)

The Story of
“Sketchy Karakters”

I was in London. I had been at a writers and illustrators conference the day before and now had time to roam and wander the city *ALONE*, a place that I used to live in for a while. Bliss! I needed some materials for sketching – I had an urge to take in the vibe and people of the city. The cheap, lined notepad and pen that I bought at the subway station would suffice.

In hindsight, the ephemeral nature of the notepad invited uninhibited drawings, no pressure for perfection, just instinctual and automated marks. I captured a variety of people and their oddities/postures/mannerisms, all at the moment that they entered and left the frame of the coffee shop window. I sat there for hours. The people were all distinct and individual, yet because of the quick and responsive marks, the drawings were more telling of me than the people themselves. Speed drawing over a long stretch of time revealed how I translate visual input.

The advice to budding drawers and even experienced illustrators is often to “draw, draw, draw!”, but how to observe that experience and be aware of personal patterns…is less explicit. In this scenario, the formula begins with endurance and speed.

My coffee shop experience could have occurred at any intersection of London, or in any other city. Therefore, I’ve earmarked the feeling and have grown the process into workshops and classes, sharing concepts and techniques to nurture participants’ own fluid movements and awareness of personal patterns.

Live drawing is also simply enjoyable and provides an escape, like a jog for the mind, regardless of if the participants are novices or professionals. By observing and drawing others we are more acutely aware of ourselves.

Join the next “Sketchy Karakters” drawing time!

Time and place will be shared via Instagram @sketchy_karakters
Open to all drawers, novice or experienced.
No cost to participate in this community-building initiative.

What do I bring?

Tools: Choose a pencil, pen, or brush, digital or analogue, any colour.
(Something that can transition between small/large, light/dark, thick/thin.)
Sketchbook: Any little notebook or sketchbook will do. (Muji sells little ones for 7 QR.)

Follow @sketchy_karakters