FAQs

What do USk and USkO stand for?
USk |you-ess-kay|: Urban Sketchers, an international non-profit organization.
USkO |you-ess-kay-oh|: Urban Sketchers O‘ahu, a regional chapter of Urban Sketchers.

Do I have to be a member to participate?
No. The concept of membership does not exist for Urban Sketchers O‘ahu; everybody is welcome to sketch with us.

Do I have to be an experienced artist to participate?
No. Artists (and non-artists) of all backgrounds and experience levels are welcome. Our goal is to make everyone feel equally comfortable at our events.

I am a visitor to the islands, can I participate?
Yes. If no get-together is scheduled during your visit, please let us know as we may be able to organize a special event or arrange to sketch with you informally.

Are digital artists welcome?
Yes. Tablets, smartphones, and laptops have made appearances at our outings.

How much do events cost?
All events are free unless clearly communicated otherwise. An event fee is very rare and would typically involve an outside entity requesting direct payment (e.g., a museum charging for entry).

What supplies do I need? Do you supply art materials? Do you supply food?
Bring supplies that you would like to work with such as paper, sketchbook, pencil, pen, paint, paintbrush, ink, charcoal, tablet, laptop (digital artists are welcome too). Unless stated otherwise, we do not supply art materials or food.

What can I expect at your events?
Our events are informal and relatively unstructured. Although we occasionally have “themed” outings, you are always free to choose your sketch subject and style. Our meetings usually proceed as follows:

  1. Event hosts welcome attendees as they arrive and provide orientation as needed or requested.
  2. Everybody sketches (independently or in groups, as desired).
  3. Thirty minutes before the scheduled end of the event, sketchers gather for a show-and-tell session to share their work and chat about art-related subjects. Event hosts make announcements and take a celebratory group photo. Attendees often stay longer to finish sketches and mingle.

Do you teach classes?
No. We do not teach classes or workshops at this time. We encourage sketchers to ask questions, and share information and tips with each other.

Are there any rules?
1. Common sense reigns (e.g., use courtesy when interacting with your fellow sketchers).
2. Urban Sketchers O‘ahu is a regional chapter of an international organization called Urban Sketchers. The Urban Sketchers Manifesto provides guidelines for artwork that aligns with its mission. We strive to support the international organization’s efforts.

What am I supposed to sketch?
Urban sketching is meant to capture “real life” as it happens (e.g., street markets, the bustling of a downtown intersection, a historic residence, fellow commuters on a bus, a building under construction, a ukulele concert). Anything you observe is fair game. Please note: We do not use photographs, models, or still lifes (see the Urban Sketchers Manifesto).

Do you critique artwork during the sketch events?
Only upon request!

How do I know when or where to meet?
Although we do have a presence on social media, the Urban Sketchers O‘ahu website is the group’s “hub”. Interested sketchers should sign up for notifications through that site; notices regarding updates to the blog will be e-mailed automatically.

Individual events are announced with a descriptive flyer that includes a map of the meeting point and other important information. Those who plan farther ahead can also check the Events tab on the website for other sketch dates.

What if I miss an event, am I no longer welcome?
You are always welcome. Come as often as you wish! Returning members are appreciated because of the camaraderie that naturally develops over time.

What if I am not able to attend events because they are held on dates or times when I am busy?
Please let us know of any regular schedule conflicts. Other sketchers may have similar situations. Feedback helps us accommodate a variety of schedules.

What if I live far away and am not able to regularly travel to events?
Let us know where you are located. We may be able to schedule a sketch event near you (or you can suggest a great sketching spot that we should not miss).

What if I have an idea for a sketch event or sketch location?
Please share; we would love to hear your ideas.

How do I share my art with fellow sketchers?
Sketchers who have attended at least one Urban Sketchers O‘ahu event are welcome to share their art in the sketch repository. See the Participation tab on our website for more information.

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