Wednesday, January 6, 2016

How To Get The Most Value Out Of Joining Urban Sketchers Chicago

1. Sketch something from your day. It could be from home, school, your work, during one of your breaks, or while you are traveling. Take a good clear photo of your sketch and share it on USK Chicago's Facebook page. If you have reservations about posting your work on the Internet, do this simple step and rest assured your work will protected: Somewhere on your sketch, embed your name and the date you sketched it onto your sketch before you snap your photo. This way, your name will always be attached to your sketch.

2. When you post one of your sketches. Tell us a little something about it like the size, what drawing tools you use and the kind of sketchbook/paper you chose.

3. Even better, ask a specific question to the community about your sketch. For example, I once posted a sketch of a stairway railing and I asked the group if my perspective was off or not. The amount of helpful and constructive feedback was very useful and gave me the positive kind of information I could use to effectively fix my sketch.

4. If you see another artist's sketch that you admire, don't hit the "LIKE" button. Instead, write a thoughtful comment about a specific area you think works really well in the sketch. To the artist who posted the sketch, this tells them a whole lot more than "LIKE."

5. You can also ask another artist about what kinds of techniques they used to achieve their sketch or how they approach a sketch. 
My experience is that artists in this group love to talk about art skills and learn a few new things from each other as well. Plus, the very nature of a Facebook group is t be social and conversations go a long way to strengthening the bond with other artists. The very fact that we are a social media group who actually meet face to face on a regular basis is what makes this group so special and unique.

6. Come out and join the group at one of our monthly Urban Sketchers Sketch Crawls. We call our events "Let's Sketch Chicago" and we meet in person at a designated location and time announced at the beginning of the month on Facebook. It is typically on the third weekend of the month and we alternate Saturdays and Sundays to accommodate more of everyone's schedules.

7. Volunteer for group activities. Our biggest event every summer is our USk Chicago Sketch Seminar. There are lots and lots of ways to help ranging from organizing and planning the event, spreading the word to local media, schools, art institutions, sponsors and to the larger population of artists who might want to attend. If you have a special skill that you would be interested to share in a workshop setting with other urban sketchers and painters, please think about becoming one of our workshop instructors. Ask me for more details. I can tell you from experience how incredibly fulfilling it is to affect people's lives with a new skill and knowledge.

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