Urban Sketchers, also referred to as USk, is a 501c3 nonprofit organization, incorporated in the state of Washington, USA, supporting and representing a grassroots global community of sketchers. Our mission as a nonprofit is to raise the artistic, storytelling and educational value of location drawing; promoting its practice and connecting people around the world who draw on location where they live and travel. We aim to show the world, one drawing at a time.

Please read our About page for more information about Urban Sketchers Hong Kong.

The USk Manifesto aims to define what urban sketching is all about. But it's not a binding set of rules. The basic idea behind these 8 points is to provide a unifying vision for the global urban sketching community. We encourage diversity in subject matter, style and technique. Translations of the Manifesto into various languages appear on our About page.

  • We draw on location, indoors or out, capturing what we see from direct observation.
  • Our drawings tell the story of our surroundings, the places we live and where we travel.
  • Our drawings are a record of time and place.
  • We are truthful to the scenes we witness.
  • We use any kind of media and cherish our individual styles.
  • We support each other and draw together.
  • We share our drawings online.
  • We show the world, one drawing at a time.


You might think Urban Sketchers has too many rules, but this is what make us different, unique and proud.

"Did you draw it on location?"  “這是現場畫的嗎?”
你可能常常看到我們對一些畫有這樣的質疑,如果我們這樣問你絕無冒犯之意。其實這個問題對我們非常重要,因它涉及我們所做的基本核心。  Urban Sketchers 城市速寫人並不像其他藝術或繪畫組織,我們身為速寫人都應該有共同的繪畫目標和精神。 我們用筆代替相機拍攝故事;並告訴世界所看到的而不是告訴世界所記得的; 在記錄發生的事情必須把背景也畫下來。就像Urban Sketchers發起人 Gabi在他的文章中提到:我們是要描繪繪畫的地方,那地方應可以放在地圖的一點,並繪畫一切在這點發生的事。

You might have seen us ask members this question all the time. We apologize if you find it offensive, but this question is very important as it concerns the Basic Core of what we do in this group. Please understand that Urban Sketchers is not like other art or painting groups. All members should have the same objectives (about sketching), thus making our sketches in the same spirit. - We are capturing history and stories like a camera but with our pens; - we are telling the world what we see - not what we remember; - we are recording the happenings with its context, otherwise no one will know where you sketched or why. Like Gabi Campanario mentioned in his article: It's about drawing places that can be put on a map, and everything that happens in those places. http://gabicampanario.blogspot.hk/2013/03/the-spirit-of-urban-sketching.html?spref=fb
我們絕對不想質疑任何一張畫,因此會員必須了解速寫人的宣言(請看發表須知.)。  所以本群組不鼓勵以下的繪畫方法:從照片臨摹、虛構的圖畫,人物肖像,抽象畫…… 等等。

We don't want to question members about every post, therefore understanding our manifestos (see Posting Guideline) is a must.  To make it clear: a copy from a photo, imaginative drawings, portraits of people, abstract drawings (too abstract) are not suitable to be posted in this group. I have been asked many times why we have to be that stiff? My answer is: "Why not? This principle is the Foundation of the art we make in this group." It is therefore our responsibility as administrators to maintain this standard. Please be aware that this is something you should understand when you ask to join us.

為了使各位更明白,我們有以下Q&A,供大家參考:In order to clear your uncertainties, we have the following Q&A for your reference:

Q.   Can I sketch my pets?
A.   Yes, but provide some background info too. E.g. 'Walking my dog at Stanley beach' Your sketch should have your dog and something in the image that connects it to a physical location. The image should tell a story.

Q.  Can I copy from a photo?
A.  NO!  

Q.   Can I sketch my dinner or my coffee?
A.   Yes, but the sketch has to include the background, we want to know which restaurant or café was that.

Q.   Can I finish the sketch at home?
A.    As long as most of the scene were completed on-location. Maybe some minor touch-up, or adding a bit of color here & there.

Q.   Can I post my old drawings?
A.    If they are very good and done on location.

Q.  Can I sketch my own home or office?
A.  Yes but why?  What special about it?  What is your story?

Q.   Why my post being removed without notice?
A.   There are many posts everyday, many are obviously not ok.  Please forgive us if we did not notify you, but you are welcome to ask why and we will explain why.

Q.   Why my comments are being removed?
A.   We will removed all the comments which are not appropriate or irrelevants.

Q.  How long should I take to finish an Urban Sketch?
A.  Should not be too long, and not more than 2-3 hours.  It is all depends how much time you have, even a 5 minutes sketch can be impressive.

(We will elaborate the above Q&A when we found good questions again.)

Please feel free to post your questions below or private message one of our administrators. Gary, Ben, Rob and Alvin

(We will elaborate the above Q&A when we found good questions again.)
if they are good and done on site.

1 comment:

  1. Hello,
    Im an urban sketcher from Dubai and im visiting Hong Kong from the 26th till the 2nd of Jan 2016. I was wondering how can i get updates on how to join any sketching trips while im in HK? :)

    Thank you!