Back in Chicago … and Sketching too!

There are places that I love.

They may be locations where I have lived and which hold deep memories of family, of being, or of becoming. There are other locales that are beautifully quiet and allow the spirit to open outward. Some, marvelously raucous and exciting, enrich our souls through the senses.

Chicago is a city that can I truly revel in; just being in, seeing it from ground level, experiencing the soaring buildings on the lakeshore and riverside. When I was a teen living in the midwest, it was a city that I thought I might go to college in or near; might even make my home and work in someday. Now, it is a city that my son lived in briefly and is home to friends and professional colleagues.

So coming to the city to sketch and to teach two sessions of a workshop for the 2019 Chicago Urban Sketchers Seminar is treat. I have met lots of interesting people from all over the country and region. Most of my students though are from the Chicago area and they are wonderful.


My workshop sessions, both titled “Richness & Simplicity, with Ink Pens and Brush Pens” concentrates on quick sketches using water-soluble and permanent inks. I am working with my students in the Wabash and Congress area of the city with its very visible L. It is a wonderful mix of old and new, ugly and beautiful, high rise and street level shops. Fun to draw!

Early phase of my Saturday demo sketch

Early phase of my Saturday demo sketch. Ink of pencil, 7×5

We were working to use visual richness balanced with simplicity in creating an image. For this first demo, I concentrated mostly on a metalwork surrounding a single pylon of the Chicago L.

Chicago L Pylon

A Chicago L Pylon at                   Wabash & Congress                       Inks w/ touches of watercolor, 7×5

Above is the completed sketch with inks and a few touches of watercolor. Richness I think I got; simplicity … somewhat.

Anyway, now it’s time to head for Salt Lake City and spend a week evaluating AP student’s art portfolios for ETS. It will quite busy but I should get a bit of sketching time in too.

1 thought on “Back in Chicago … and Sketching too!

  1. Pingback: Home again, home again … | Sketching … Always!

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