Category Archives: walking

preparing for a travel sketchwalk

I am preparing for my local Travel Sketching ‘walk and talk’ that are on this Friday and Saturday. Both sessions (1pm -3.30pm ) of 15 people are fully booked out and there is a waiting list ! The wonderful Melbourne Library Service have promoted the sessions widely and there has been a lot of interest to run repeat sessions. 

Yesterday I spent time walking the route and stopping at my planned locations.We are only walking a few blocks and there is so much potential to draw. The idea of the day is to inspire people and  to open their eyes to the possibilities and concept of travel sketching (not to try to teach them to draw in two hours) .


We start in the Library, where I will talk a little about travel sketching, my own approach and what we will be doing. Melbourne Library Service is supplying watercolour pencils, waterbrush and paper for the day.

There are three stops along the way once we leave the Library, each with so many potential things to draw – up close or vistas. We will stop for about 20 minutes at each .  I walked the walk yesterday doing my own sketches which I can show as examples on the day.

These are very quick sketches, as sometimes when you travel you do not get the opportunity to sit down and sketch for a long time.  I also don’t want people to stress about the drawing and getting caught in the details. 

Stop 1
Stop 2

Stop 3.

After the final stop, the plan is to retrace our route back to the Library, giving people the chance to spend more time on a previous sketch or do some more. 

When we arrive back at the Library, afternoon tea awaits and also time to talk about the day and share experiences and sketches if people are comfortable with that. I also have some examples of published travel sketchbooks from my own collection for anyone to browse through to inspire  them to continue. Ad there is my own Travel Sketchbook display on in the Library. 

It will all be very flexible on the day. This is the first group talk I have given and it will be a positive learning experience for everyone. 

My only concern is the weather. It is Melbourne in winter. This week has been 14 degrees and sunny blue skies. Fingers crossed that this continues. The wet weather alternatives are not exciting. However that is all part of travel sketching. Sometime weather changes your plans and you have to make do with alternatives.  

sketching while walking

I have a few different sketching styles using both watercolour pencils and ink, sometime combining the two. I draw objects with detail over a few hours and I also sketch quickly.

My sketches in ink are usually sketched out of my apartment. If I have time I add colour on the spot or write a quick note and add later.

Sometimes my sketches of people are done as I walk behind the. I am moving and they are moving. I sketched one today for this weeks Urban Sketchers flickr Group Weekly Challenge of MOTION . (look in the Discussions. It is posted at the top of the page and you share it with the group)

I looked back through my sketches and have gathered a few here together. I am very fortunate to walk into Sydney city across a wide pedestrian bridge and then along a wide wharf. There are lots of tourists a well as office workers, so plenty to choose from. But I choose  times of the day, when it is quieter. There is also lots of space around so I don’t run into anyone coming the other way.

I choose subjects that are walking slowly, and at a nice steady pace. That way I can look at repeat movements of arms and legs swinging to try to capture it on paper.