Saturday 18 April 2020

Sketch in colour: A virtual art challenge - Saturday 25 April 2020

You are invited to Sketch in colour: a virtual art challenge on Saturday 25 April 2020, from 11am to 1pm.

We would like to preserve as much as possible the idea of a sketching event taking place at a particular time.  Of course, if this date and time is not practical for you, feel free to do the challenge on another occasion.

This replaces the joint meet-up planned for Urban Sketchers London and Urban Sketchers Cambridge.  Posting on social media, use the hashtags #uskathome #sketchincolour #usklondon #uskcambridge

Summary: The theme of this challenge is colour.  We hope you will experiment and move beyond your comfort zone.  For this challenge, it is suggested you find yourself a subject which you can sketch from observation on the day.  On the day, you will do a preliminary sketch (maybe in pencil), then three quick colour versions of this subject - each will show a different use of colour.  Read through the description below, as before the challenge starts, you will need to prepare three different coloured backgrounds on which to draw or paint.

Materials: You can use any coloured materials for this: paint, coloured inks, coloured pencils, crayons, coloured pens, oil pastels, chalk pastels, collage.

Advance preparation: A few days before the date of the challenge, prepare three different coloured surfaces on which you will paint and draw.  These could be:

·         Paper coloured by washes of watercolour or diluted acrylic ink, or something similar

·         Coloured paper (manufactured): do experiment a bit rather than choose beige, grey and buff

·         Collaged surfaces suitable for your painting/drawing materials

As you will be working quickly to produce three small studies, I suggest these prepared sheets should not be too big.

The aim is to move away from the natural colours of the scene, and experiment.  I suggest you choose colours for your backgrounds as follows:

·         A colour which you find uplifting, which makes you happy

·         A colour which to you is calming

·         A colour which you find warm and energising

These examples are done in gouache on backgrounds of diluted acrylic ink.  Your approach could be quite different, with more emphasis on line drawing with coloured pens, for example.

Choosing a subject to sketch: choose any scene it is practical for you to sketch from observation on the day, inside or outside, a view from a window, a balcony or garden.  Don’t make your subject too extensive or complex – the aim is small colour studies.

What to do on the day:

11-11.10: Make sure your art kit and prepared sheets of paper are ready (10 minutes) 

11.10-11.30: Start with a warm-up sketch, in a sketchbook, perhaps simply in pencil, to clarify your subject and composition in your mind (20 minutes)

11.30-11.40: using your three different coloured sheets, choose a different selection of colours to sketch on each.

Then, do three colour studies/sketches of the same subject from observation (20 minutes each)

11.40-12 noon: Colour study 1

12 noon-12.20: Break (optional!)

12.20-12.40: Colour study 2

12..40-1pm Colour study 3

1pm: Finish.  Congratulations!  Please photograph or scan and post your sketches and enjoy the sketches of others too.

Posting on social media, use the hashtags #uskathome #sketchincolour #usklondon #uskcambridge

Follow-up: Having done the three colour studies, you could choose one of the colour ranges and make a more developed sketch/drawing/painting.