A Sketcher’s Oasis

Today marked our first visit to the new UH Medical School complex in Kakaʻako, and we were impressed. Surrounded by LEED certified buildings, the inner courtyard offers a native Hawaiian garden, a small bubbling fountain feature where birds bathe, a variety of foliage, and – importantly – shaded seating at any time of day. In short, we were more than comfortable and had plenty to sketch. Joined by another visiting sketcher, this time from New York City, we discussed methods, media, and motivations while sharing our sketches of the day. Photos courtesy of Stephen, whose smartphone saved the day after our trusted official USkO camera stopped working.

As always, don’t forget to check out our sketches on Flickr and upload your own!

See you at our next event on September 9!

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Kaka‘ako WOW!

Today, Urban Sketchers O‘ahu met in Kaka‘ako during POW! WOW! Hawai‘i. For those unfamiliar with the festival, it is an annual gathering of local and international artists who create murals and other artwork. The complexity of the murals is impressive, and many artists require mechanical lifts and ladders in order to complete them.

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We thought this festival would be a great opportunity for sketchers to not only see the murals under construction but also try their hands at subjects different than our normal fare. Uncertain if many of our regular sketchers would be able to meet in the middle of a conventional workday, we were pleasantly surprised to see several prior participants. We also welcomed some new faces and introduced our group to several passers-by who might join us in the future.

As is tradition, our itinerary was relatively unstructured. Upon meeting, sketchers quickly scattered across several adjacent blocks and captured different murals and urban landscapes. The diversity of each sketcher’s choices was once again much appreciated during the show-and-tell session.

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It is wonderful to see that POW! WOW! Hawai‘i is going strong, and we will definitely keep it on the calendar for next year. Muralists were very friendly and open to being sketched. And, we certainly were not the only gawkers in the area! Hope to see familiar and new faces at our next event on the UH Mānoa campus (Saturday, 2/20)!


Special Event in Kaka‘ako

Although midweek, as well as midday, our February 11 event is a great opportunity to see (and sketch!) artists painting murals during POW! WOW! Hawai‘i‘s annual festival.


A Humid Morning of Sketching at Kewalo Basin Harbor

Despite former Tropical Storm Ela passing the islands this weekend, we lucked out this morning with good weather at Kewalo Basin Harbor. Not that we were totally unaffected: we know of at least one person who was unable to make it because of poor weather elsewhere. The setting at the harbor was pleasant though, with moderate tourist activity, generally involving diving, parasailing, and pirate-ship tours.

We struggled again with attendance this weekend and had only six participants. Despite the low numbers we spent a productive 1.5 hours sketching a variety of scenes in the harbor and then shared our work with each other. Even with a small group, the post-sketch discussion always offers great opportunities to compare our various drawing styles, backgrounds, and equipment (micron pens, different pencil leads, and paper thicknesses).

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Having experienced active and vibrant Urban Sketchers communities on the mainland and elsewhere, we remain committed to our goal of developing a similar group here. We hope former participants will keep coming and new / curious artists will check us out! Our next event will be on Saturday, August 8, so save the date on your calendar.