About urbansketcherschicago

Urban Sketchers is a network of artists around the world who draw the cities where they live and travel to. Our mission is to "Show the World, One Drawing at a Time.

Only 1 more day until registration opens!!!

The time is almost here! Get ready to register for the 2018 USk Chicago Sketch Seminar. Less than one day away. Registration begins Thursday, March 15, at 10 am CST.

Do you know which workshops you’d like to sign up for? Here are some helpful links to help you prepare:

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Meet Our Instructors: Wes Douglas


Wes Douglas

Wes Douglas is a working graphic designer, illustrator and co-founder of the Elmhurst-based innovation agency Maddock Douglas.
Wes has won numerous awards for Fortune 500 companies with his packaging designs and corporate branding work. In addition to being a co-founder of Maddock Douglas Inc., Wes has also been group leader for the Gazelles G200 Forums; graphic facilitator, concept visualizer, and administrator at Urban Sketchers Chicago; former member of AIGA, Design Management Institute, In-Store Marketing Institute, CPG Branding and Marketing, Brand Packaging Group.

Urban Sketching has helped Wes to hone his visualization skills by breaking down complex urban landscapes into simple vignettes and to share his unique perspectives with many others. Recently, Wes has appeared on WGN Morning News and WGN Radio AM 720 “Outside The Loop” program to share his passion of urban sketching with Chicago listeners and to promote upcoming Sketch Seminars and the 8th International Urban Sketchers Symposium.

Wes is the instructor for the workshop WS 18: Sketching Vehicles the Urban Sketchers’ Way.


Sausage Fest Truck by Wes Douglas


Highlander by Wes Douglas

Meet Our Instructors: Uma Kelkar

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      Uma Kelkar

      Years watercolor painting: 8+

    • Multiple national and international juried shows
    • Professional watercolor solo shows
    • Author of a book on sketching
    • Work Included in a Portraiture book and Urban Sketching book by Virginia Hein
    • Curator of professional gallery shows
    • Administrator of 1800+ member watercolor
      painting group on Flickr
    • Multiple award winner for plein air + watercolor

Experiences that Uma credits with shaping her as an instructor in an ongoing way:

    1. Teaching has taught her that pleasing everyone is not possible. The best outcome is when you can break down a problem into bite sizes and teach them with confidence. Bite size exercises can feel too easy, but the class work at the end of a string of exercises reflects higher quality precisely because of bite size exercises.
    2. Leading a sketch walk (with iPad) at the Apple store in Union Square, San Francisco, allowed her to prove what she believes in – that design concepts can easily cross boundaries of media.
    3. An electrical engineer by education, she believes her lack of formal art education actually is an asset, as she is unhindered by set ideas and methods of approaching a fine-arts problem.


WS 17: Gray Matter: Using gray to tie two contrasting colors in two washes for lively and quick sketching


Many Colors/Two Washes by Uma Kelkar



Few Colors/Two Washes by Uma Kelkar

Meet Our Instructors: Peggy Condon


Peggy Condon

Peggy has studied painting, drawing, mechanical drafting and landscape architecture, creating detailed drawings and creative landscape plans for clients. A workshop in marker rendering led to full color marker drawings of each garden design. Watercolors of large projects were created for final presentations. An interest in the work of architect Marion Mahoney Griffin influenced the development of interpretive drawings to depict how a landscape plan might look in 10 years when the plantings were more mature. A positive response to these imagined landscapes led to intensive study, especially in the design and maintenance of public gardens. These experiences still contribute to the decisions and techniques she employs in even the quickest sketch. As a member of USk Chicago since 2014, when Peggy participated in her first sketch seminar, she continues to explore sketching techniques. She is motivated by the encouragement of Urban Sketchers and the enthusiasm of previous “Team Sketching” workshops she has led. This positive energy, and skills developed through work and education in landscape design and drawing, have strongly influenced the evolution of this current “Team Sketching” workshop.

For Peggy, the most exciting pieces of this workshop are the conversations about technique, scale and proportion as students cooperate to produce the final “Team Sketch”. WS 16: Team Sketching


Sketch by Peggy Condon


Sketch by Peggy Condon

Meet Our Instructors: Mike Daikubara


Mike Daikubara

Mike is an industrial designer and graphics designer working as the Director of Brand and Design development at Symmons Industries. He has over 20 years experience in the design industry, having worked in various fields ranging from fashion/cosmetics, consumer electronics, medical, juvenile/baby products and currently, plumbing products. He holds a B.A. from Sophia University in Tokyo (Japan), Bachelors of Industrial Design from Pratt Institute in New York City, an MBA from Marquette University in Milwaukee (Wisconsin). He is currently working on his Masters of Fine Arts Degree in Graphics Design from Academy of Arts in San Francisco/Online program.
He first started sketching in 2000 to be able to communicate better and faster at his design job and now 18 years later, sketching has become more of a passion and has become fully integrated into his lifestyle of learning to see, understand and to enjoy his everyday life.

To date, Mike has published 7 books on the topic of sketching, including his latest called Sketch NOW Think Later on which this workshop is based. WS 14: Sketch NOW Think Later


Sail Boston by Mike Daikubara


Boston Harbor by Mike Daikubara

Meet Our Instructors: Paul Ingold


Paul Ingold

Paul has a B.A. in Design (Visual Communications) and has been a User Experience/Visual designer in the corporate world for almost 19 years. Paul currently works within a design team that helps build web solutions used by many Fortune 500 companies. Like everyone else he first started out with crayons, an Etch A Sketch and a Magic Slate. He started taking oil painting lessons by the third grade. Since then, he has always been fascinated with both scientific and simple watercolor illustrations.

Around 2014, Paul stumbled upon a book called the Art of Urban Sketching by Gabriel Campanario. Shortly after, he Googled “Urban Sketchers Chicago.” He then met the USk Chicago group at the Lincoln Park Zoo. The rest is history. Today he focuses on honing his urban sketcher skills using micron pens and watercolor.

You can view more of Paul’s work on instagram @pabloingold.

In June, he will be the instructor for the workshop WS 15: Light & Shadow – Urban Sketching with Pen and Watercolor.


Old Coast Guard Station, by Paul Ingold


Field Museum Stegosaurus, by Paul Ingold