USK-Workshop: Umbrien entdecken! - ABGESAGT

Due to the coronavirus outbreak in  Italy, Suma, La Romita and USK have taken their responsibilities and decided to cancel this workshop. 

Want to come back from your travels with a sketchbook full of memories? In this dynamic 4-day workshop co-hosted by La Romita School of Art, you’ll learn techniques for quickly capturing scenes in ink & watercolor as you explore Umbria, Italy. You’ll use gestural line to sketch the essence of fleeting moments, whether it’s people at a cafe in the piazza or clouds over a sweeping landscape. Then you’ll add vibrant color to bring your drawings to life.

Each day will bring new places and subjects to inspire and challenge you: markets, ruins, even vineyards. There will be a mix of demos, exercises, and individual instruction in each location. You’ll come away energized and excited to draw!

Participants will learn to: 

  • Choose and frame a subject, using compositional principles 
  • Simplify architecture and people using gestural, dynamic line 
  • Use appropriate marks for both close-up as well as wide-angle scenes 
  • Tailor their sketches to the place, using a localized palette of colors and textures 
  • Add color to their sketches with loose washes, not bound by the lines drawn
  • Selectively “break the rules” of color, tools, and paper to get a fresh perspective 
  • Create a visual narrative of their travels 

All you have to do is get yourself to Rome; everything else is taken care of! Learn about dining and accommodations at La Romita School.

Workshop details 

Tag 1 

Arrival and orientation 

  • Transfer from Rome to workshop location 
  • Showcase and intro to the workshop 
  • Survey of sketchbooking styles – words, pictures, collage, textures 

Tag 2 

Outdoor Sketching Basics

Morning [San Gemini or nearby]

  • Warm up, getting loose 
  • Choosing a subject 
  • Principles of composition 
  • Close ups, wide angles 

Afternoon [Studio]

  • Techniques for proportion, angles, and perspective 
  • Measuring and capturing proportional elements and angles 

Tag 3 

Gesture, Place, and Values 

Morning [Todi or nearby]

  • Using gesture for suggestion: buildings, people 
  • Localizing your sketch – textures, unique features 
  • Simplified scenes, a sense of place 

Afternoon [Studio]

  • Simplifying values 
  • Focus on light and shadow 
  • Ink & wash value sketches; coloring sketches 

Tag 4 

Paint the rainbow 

Morning: [Montefalco or nearby]

  • What color is that? Seeing color in a beige world 
  • Pushing colors to extremes 
  • Complementary colors and how to use them for vibrant scenes
  • Compositions using contrast and vibrant colors 

Afternoon: [Studio]

  • Explore options for limited color schemes 
  • Using different 3- or 4-color palettes 

Tag 5 

Day trip [Assisi or nearby] 

  • Putting all the elements together 
  • Creating a narrative and adding notes 
  • Series of sketches to tell a story of a place 
  • Use a sketch as template for “breaking rules” 
  • Sketching scavenger hunt 

Tag 6 

Departure – Transfer to Rome for travel home 

Practical info

When: May 22-27, 2020

Where: Italy (Rome to Umbria and back)

Minimum 10 participants. Beginners welcome. Scholarships available; please inquire when you register.

Fee: $2100. Includes all instruction, airport transfers from/to Rome, dining & accommodations. Pay in full by 30 November 2019 to get 10% off the workshop price.

Register for the workshop by clicking hier, or send an e-mail to

Über den Ausbilder 

Suma CM is an award-winning artist who is passionate about teaching. She has led several workshops on outdoor sketching in the San Francisco Bay Area and is the instructor of the online class “Urban Sketching in 15 Minutes a Day” on Bluprint. Her work is included in Archisketcher (North Light Books). A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Suma has a degree in cultural anthropology with minors in fine arts and psychology as well as an MBA from the Wharton School. When she isn’t sketching, she is a manager at Google in Mountain View, California. She previously served on the Executive Board of Urban Sketchers and still sits on its Advisory Board.

About La Romita School 

La Romita School is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, dedicated to promoting cross-cultural exchange through the arts. It was established in 1966, and since then has been organizing workshops for artists of various disciplines including sketching, plein air painting, calligraphy, writing, & poetry.

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