[By Tina Koyama, Symposium Correspondent in Manchester, UK] On the symposium’s last day, the sun finally came out, and some workshops got to move outdoors.
My first report of the day, however, took place indoors at the Museum of Science and Industry, where Mike Daikubara chose the aircraft gallery to teach Sketch NOW, Think Later. Beginning with a fun peek into his sketch kit, including his micro-mini stool small enough to fit into his back pocket, Mike gave us creative ideas for modifying tools to suit one’s style. His whole philosophy of urban sketching is to be as fast as possible so that he can maximize whatever time is available. Using that principle as his guide, he showed students how he simplifies complex subject matter and scenes.
Next I took a hike to the John Rylands Library, where I was able to catch two workshops in progress. During Nina Johansson’s From Macro to Micro: a Visual Story of a Building, I caught a few students sketching at the foot of a sidewalk sculpture (top of post) and Nina commenting on exercise sketches.
Meanwhile, Liz Steel introduced students to the basic principles of her sketching cornerstones, Sketching Architecture in Edges, Shapes and Volumes.
In the afternoon I sat in on Richard Brigg’s fascinating presentation on how urban sketching can be used as a design tool and to give the full sense of a place. I knew Liz Ackerly would be covering the event, so I left my sketchbook closed, but I came away with new ideas about how to enable urban sketches to tell stronger stories. Think holistically, Richard encouraged us. “Ask why? And What is the message your sketch conveys?”
The final sketchwalk was held among the trees and meandering walkways of All Saints Gardens. As I have experienced at the closing sketchwalks of previous symposiums, seeing hundreds of sketchers in the same space gave me an immense feeling of community and connection. I am very grateful for the opportunity I was given the past four days to be immersed in the symposium experience more fully than I ever have before. As a correspondent, I was engaged on a different level — simultaneously as participant, observer and documenter — and I grew as both sketcher and community member as a result.
My sincere thanks go to Simone Ridyard and the rest of the symposium committee and the Executive Board for giving us all another unforgettable experience. Most of all, I give huge thanks and a big hug to my very hard-working symposium correspondent team. Their dedication and positive attitude were inspiring and motivating.