Friday, 30 September 2022

The joys of pushing beyond your comfort zone with Urban Sketchers London -- by Doris Humer

Covent Garden sketchwalk 
Drawing by Doris Humer

Earlier this year as I was planning a trip to my beloved London, I was looking online for information on the regular monthly Urban Sketchers London sketchwalk in August. Then I found out that in July there would be an entire 10th Anniversary Celebration Weekend full of workshops and sketchwalks, so I quickly registered for the weekend before my brain was able to cry, 'That’s far outside your comfort zone!!!'. I have to remark that I am a beginner in drawing, hard of hearing, and I’m living in Austria -- so it was three times NOT in my comfort zone.

The Urban Sketchers London 10 Year Anniversary
Weekend Celebration July 2022

Now I am so happy that I dared to join the Anniversary Weekend. I took part in three sketchwalks, and two workshops -- 'Near and Far' with wonderful Lis Watkins, and 'London in My Pocket Sketchbook' with Gabi Campanario, the very founder of the Urban Sketchers movement.

'Near and Far' workshop with Lis Watkins
Sketch by Doris Humer

Everyone of this community was so caring and patient with my struggles in understanding and communicating in a foreign language, so I could soon relax and I started to enjoy the weekend to its fullest.

'London in My Pocket Sketchbook' workshop with Gabi Campanario
Drawing by Doris Humer

I had never been at an Urban Sketchers meeting before, so I was very fascinated by this community with most different sketching knowledge, origins, professions and ways of living. I felt the strong bonding just caused by the love of sketching the world and supporting each other in this way.

Sketchwalk at Bernie Spain Gardens
Drawing by Doris Humer

Sketchwalk next to Tate Modern
Drawing by Doris Humer

I don’t like the 'throwdowns' very much because I see so much to improve in my drawings (hello, comfort zone!), but at the Urban Sketchers London meeting it wasn’t a problem at all because I felt the non-judgmental way people looked at my sketches.

I loved to look at others' work, and was fully fascinated how great and so very different all drawings were. Also, I am proud of my own sketches and that I crashed my comfort zone that hard. You only can grow that way!

The 'grand finale' sketchwalk at St Paul's Cathedral
Drawing by Doris Humer

Follow Doris Humer on Instagram @doris.krimskrams

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London by Urban Sketchers - Our 10 Year Anniversary Book

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Friday, 23 September 2022

Let's draw Mile End - 15 October 2022


Sketch by Martin Stone

[by Martin Stone and Adam Jefford]

In October we draw Mile End

Our sketchcrawl this month is based at the Art Pavilion in Mile End Park, the venue of our 'London by Urban Sketchers' 10 Year Anniversary Exhibition from 8 to 16 October  

At the heart of London’s old East End, vibrant Mile End has a wide range of sketching opportunities. The area is bounded to the west by Regent’s Canal, with its colourful houseboats, working locks and bridges alongside the award winning Mile End Park. To the east are the well-preserved Georgian terraces centred on beautiful Tredegar Square. Grove Road and its continuation Burdett Road run north to south, and feature a wide range of urban architecture and scenes.

Our sketchcrawl takes place on the penultimate day of the London by Urban Sketchers exhibition -- the perfect opportunity for an 'up close and personal' view of more than 100 drawings by Urban Sketchers, many of them for sale. 

The Art Pond and Pavilion
Photo courtesy of Visit London

Key times and meeting points

Entrance to the earth-sheltered Art Pavilion
Photo by Martin Stone

11 AM

We will meet outside the Art Pavilion, Mile End Park E3 4QY. The Pavilion is situated about seven minutes’ walk from Mile End Underground station.  

For details of the location and how to get there, see Practical Information below.

1 PM

We will meet again outside the Art Pavilion for the first throwdown.

3.30 PM

Meet at the same place for the final throwdown.


For those who would like to stay for a drink, a chat and maybe a sketch, the Tredegar Square area has several historic pubs. Recommended is the Morgan Arms, whose friendly staff have offered us a welcome drink and are looking forward to our visit. The Morgan Arms is at the junction of Morgan Street and Coborn Road, about seven minutes’ walk from the Art Pavilion.

The Morgan Arms
Sketch by Adam Jefford

Options for drawing

The towpath along Regent’s Canal

The towpath along the east side of Regent’s Canal features numerous houseboats, Victorian bridges, canal wildlife and a working lock. The west side comprises both Victorian and modern buildings.

Regent's Canal
Photo by Adam Jefford

Regent's Canal
Photo by Adam Jefford

Tredegar Square

A few minutes’ walk east of the Art Pavilion takes you to beautiful shady Georgian Tredegar Square, with gardens and mature trees in the centre. The square is surrounded by attractive Georgian terraces built in the 1830s and 1840s, similar to those found in Belgravia.

The Lord Tredegar Pub
Photo by Martin Stone

Mile End Park

This attractive 32-hectare linear park runs alongside Regent's Canal from Limehouse in the south up to the lower end of Victoria Park, with views across to the City of London and the towers at Canary Wharf. Designed with both people and wildlife in mind, the park is divided into zones for art, ecology, sports and children’s play, and its award winning Green Bridge serves as a 25m wide landscaped parkland crossing over Mile End Road for cyclists and pedestrians. 

View from Mile End Park
Photo by Adam Jefford

Practical Information

Facilities on site

There are numerous cafes and coffee shops around the junction of Grove Rd and Mile End Road. Recommended coffee shops along the short walk from Mile End Tube Station to the Art Pavilion are International Comrades Coffee Shop (Burdett Road) and The Coffee Room (Grove Rd). 

The Orange Room at 63 Burdett Road is a friendly Lebanese cafe/restaurant that does a good value mezze lunch.

The area is flat, with good pavements and paths throughout.

Toilets are available at the Art Pavilion and in local cafes and coffee shops. 

Regent's Canal
Photo by Adam Jefford

By public transport

Mile End Underground Station is on the District and Hammersmith & City lines. Connect at Whitechapel for the Elizabeth Line.

The 25, 250, 277 and 425 buses stop in Mile End Road. For their routes, locations of bus stops and real-time bus locations, please visit the Transport for London website.

By car

There is very little car parking near Mile End Park. The local streets operate a permit system for residents. Limited parking is available at Bow Wharf, to the north of the Art Pavilion.

COVID-19 visit information

We will remain alert to national guidance about COVID-19 and its variants. Even while restrictions have been lifted, it's sensible to take all necessary precautions to keep ourselves and fellow sketchers safe throughout the event. The risk of infection for outdoor events is low, but basic guidance still applies:

· Please do not attend if you feel unwell

· Wear a face covering when you're close to others

· Give people space

· Practice good hand hygiene.  

Location Map  

Key locations of the day are shown on the map below.

The day is led by Martin Stone and Adam Jefford.

See you at Mile End!

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Friday, 2 September 2022

London by Urban Sketchers - Open exhibition: Submission deadline 18 September!

Sketch by Isabel Carmona

As we approach the end of our 10th Birthday Year, it's time to showcase our work to the public and our friends and families 

Prepare your artwork for display at the

London by Urban Sketchers - Open Exhibition

at The Art Pavilion in Mile End Park 

8 - 16 October 2022

The Art Pavilion in Mile End Park
Photo courtesy of Visit London

What's the deadline?

We're accepting submissions until midnight (GMT) of Sunday 18 September 2022.
Once we've received your images, we will let you know by Tuesday 20 September 2022 if your work is selected.

Who can submit?

We welcome submissions from any sketcher in the UK or abroad who has drawn London on location in a way that meets the criteria of the Urban Sketchers Manifesto.

How do sketchers submit their artwork?

To submit your artwork for the exhibition, scroll down to the big red 'Exhibition submission form' button below. You will need to agree to our Terms and Conditions, which are set out below and included on the submission form.

Sketch by Ray Chan

What are we looking for?

We want to see a variety of sketches and paintings that tell a story of London.
Each person can submit up to four sketches. There is a hanging fee for each artwork selected: 
  • £5 for 1 picture
  • £9 for 2 pictures
  • £12 for 3 pictures 
  • £15 for 4 pictures.

Sketch by Lis Watkins

What if someone wants to buy my art?

Your art can be either for sale or NFS (Not For Sale) at the exhibition. Urban Sketchers London will process all sales during the exhibition, and will take a 10% commission on the price of each artwork sold (see our Terms and Conditions below). Please take our commission into account when setting your prices.

Here are our terms and conditions

  • For each artwork you submit, you must include the medium, size and sale price. If your form is not complete, we will not be able to display it or promote it.
  • Use the 'Exhibition submission form' button below to submit your images via our Google form. Alternatively, you can send us your images by email.
  • Urban Sketchers London will charge a commission of 10% for each artwork sold. Please take this into account when you price your artwork. Please also note our hanging fees listed below. 

If your artwork is selected, you agree to the following points

  • Deliver your work to us on the specified Receiving Day at the Exhibition venue:
        Mile End Art and Community Centre
        The Art Pavillion
        Mile End Park
        Clinton Road, London E3 4QY. 

  • Ensure your artwork is ready to display, complete with hanging cord for 2D work. 
  • Be sure your artwork is covered by insurance for any eventuality, from the moment you hand it in to the moment you collect it.
  • Pay your hanging fee (by cash or card) when you hand it in on Receiving Day. The fees are as follows:
        £5 for one picture
        £9 for 2 pictures
        £12 for 3 pictures
        £15 for 4 pictures.

  • Collect unsold work from the exhibition venue on the date and time specified in Exhibition Details.
  • If your artwork is sold we will notify you, and at the end of the exhibition we will send you instructions as to how to invoice Urban Sketchers London. There will be a small payment transaction fee for each sale -- we will deduct this fee before we calculate our 10% commission.   
  • You agree that Urban Sketchers London may use the images you sent us to promote the event, either in printed literature or on social media.

And this is what Urban Sketchers London will do for you
  • Display the selected artworks, curate the exhibition, open and steward the display during exhibition opening times, and process payments for the sale of all artworks
  • Respond in a timely manner to artists' queries about sales, and notify exhibitors when their artwork is sold.  

Would you like to be a volunteer steward? 

If you are willing to help steward the exhibition, feel free to send us a message by email. We would love to hear from you.

Here is the link for submissions 

Just click the button below to go to the submission form and submit your sketches. 
Google Form for Exhibition submission

Any questions?

If you have any questions, just drop us an email.

Sketch by Jane Cradock-Watson

See you at the exhibition!

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