Our next art in the time of coronavirus will be on Tuesday 30 June, when we suggest that you try virtual sketching. This has been the Urban Sketchers’ solution to the problem of how to carry on sketching contemporary life in a time of widespread home lockdown, and it has become possible thanks to the technological marvels of those internet giants, google and facebook. Many of you will be familiar with google’s streetmaps and aerial photographs of more or less the entire planet now; they have also driven round every road everywhere and photographed everything. Artwork can be produced from these photographs, and the Urban Sketchers have organised a daily programme of “VirtualSketchtours” since early on in the lockdown. As a sketching group, we thought that Art in the Park should be aware of this development, and try it out at least once.
However, in the centre of the IAS Art in the Park we only have the barest minimum of technical capability, and are completely unable to work out our own virtual sketching tour. We have therefore decided to join in on one of the Urban Sketchers’ Virtual Sketch Tours.
Individual urban sketchers have taken the trouble to go through google’s photographs and select a number of places which would sketch well, and incorporate them into sreet tours. These events are open to all, and we have decided on the Talinn tour. Talinn is off the beaten track for most (but not all) of us, has the charm of novelty, is an attractive historic city, (in Estonia), and has one of the better sets of photographs, google’s photos are not taken with any regard to allure.
What you need to do is this:
1) sign in or register with facebook – you can always unregister if your principles prevent you from contributing to Mark Zuckerberg. It is possible that this link will let you see the relevant page on facebook without registering, but we would not bet on it: https://www.facebook.com/events/1696654720472739/
2) Search within facebook for #Virtualsketch
3) Click on Events (in left hand column)
4) Scroll down to Talinn, Estonia
5) Click on See More at the end of the Talinn introduction
6) Click on one of the location links for Talinn beauty spots
7) A photograph appears; move your cursor around and you will find that the view changes, it will stop moving if you stop moving your cursor
8) Repeat until you have looked at all the locations, and found something which you would like to sketch
9) If you are using your desktop computer, the light will almost certainly be unsatisfactory. If this affects you, take a photograph of your scene or scenes, and transfer it into your ipad, which you can then set up so that the light is OK
10 Then create art in the comfort of your home studio.
Certainly post your art on the #Virtualsketch facebook page if you are registered both for facebook and as a member of the Virtual Sketch group, and if you so wish. This should be done on or after Thursday 2 July, which is the date of the official Urban Sketchers sketchtour. In any case, please send images to Sue Lees (via Susan@lees.org.uk) in the normal way and they will appear on the blog in due course.
Virtual sketching is much more fun than it sounds, and it does offer the opportunity to make something of a subject which almost certainly will not have the attractions of one which you have found yourself by actually padding the streets. It also means that you are not constricted by time, changing light, weather, parked vans, and the other problems of plein air painting.
Good luck! We look forward to seeing many interpretations of the Talinn street scene!