USk Symposium Amsterdam 2019

Quick links:

– Program & Schedule

– USk NL Sketchwalks open to all

– Symposium FAQ (must read)

– Symposium registration site

– Symposium Closing Reception single tickets

Other social media platforms, you can follow Symposium news:

– FB group : USk Amsterdam 2019 International Symposium

– IG: usksymposium

– USk Netherlands Symposium page

– Things to know before you arrive

– Drink and Draw Venue



The 10th International Urban Sketchers Symposium whizzed us by so quickly. What lies behind the curtains are years, months, days and hours of planning, coordination, and work from all parties who made it possible.

Here’s a big shout out to Team Netherlands! We thank our local host team, led by Ruud Otten and Gail Anne Howard, for their commitment to make sure everyone had a great sketching experience on their home ground. Together with Peggy Titaley, Linda Toolsema, Roger Klaassen, Rene Fijten, Caroline Fidelaire, Peer Wolkers, Odeta Coenen, Marleen Dembrink and the entire army of dedicated volunteers, they were resilient even during the toughest weather. We are honoured to have worked with each and everyone of you and highly appreciate your hospitality, creative ideas and best effort to make this Symposium special. Thank you Anne Rose Oosterbaan for the design expertise to create a unique identity for the Symposium.

We thank all our generous sponsors for their support and hefty contribution to our goodie bags, raffle draw, and presence in the Art Supplies Market. It gave the participants a first-hand experience to know the products and try them straight from the makers and distributors.

Each piece of this wonderful community of volunteers, from local to international, on-ground to online, function purposely for the love of urban sketching. We celebrate ten years of this connection and camaraderie with the same goals at heart.

We thank the Executive Board, team of advisors, coordinators, faculty and everyone made the Symposium happen from start to finish.

Congratulations USk Netherlands for a wonderful Symposium! Congratulations USk Hong Kong for hosting the next!

Last but not the least, our Symposiums are made possible by the passion of all who participate and everyone who follow us at every corner of the world. Until the next one in 2020, we hope you take all that inspiration from Amsterdam and have a whole year of happy sketching!








PENUP is an SNS platform where users from around the world use their drawings and illustrations to interact with one another.

This year marks the 6th year since PENUP and Urban Sketchers decided to come together and support sketchers all across the globe who love to create and communicate with drawings.

PENUP is delighted to be here in Amsterdam (the Netherlands), a city full of colorful houses, clear patches of blue skies, beautiful flowers, and most of all, the home of world-famous artists such as Van Gogh and Rembrandt. We’re excited to capture the beauty of Amsterdam in stunning illustrations with our PENUP users.

This year, PENUP will have a booth at the Art Market during the 10th Interrnational Urban Sketchers Symposium. 

If you’re interested in PENUP come and visit them at booth 9. You might win a surprise gift, so don’t miss out on that opportunity as well.

On PENUP, everyone, from beginners who aren’t particularly used to drawing to seasoned artists, communicates and interacts as one giant community.

Here are some of the services they offer at PENUP that help all users learn how to draw more easily than ever.




Bring out your inner artist with your drawings.



Express your inner feelings using various colors. You can use a variety of different colors on a designed pattern to express your feelings and create your own unique piece of art.


Live Drawing

Learn how to draw by following the instructions and drawing pictures inspired by different themes on the screen. Live Drawing sessions give you a chance to see how pictures are drawn in an easy-to-understand way.



Draw new things with different themes and subjects every two weeks.

Take part in the PENUP challenge if you’re looking for some inspiration, and enjoy the works of other users as well.



Hall of Fame

Each month, PENUP inducts one PENUP user who displays extraordinary artistic talent and produces drawings that seem almost impossible to create with smartphones into the Hall of Fame (HoF).

Check out the amazing power of digital drawing.




They look forward to meeting everyone at the PENUP booth (no. 9) from the 24th-27th.

* PENUP is available at Google Store and Samsung Galaxy Store*

– Google Store:

– Galaxy Store:

– You can also use PENUP on their website

SPONSOR POST: Aquarius by Roman Szmal Art






You’re in for a treat to know that Aquarius paints is one of our generous Urban Sketchers International Symposium sponsors this year in Amsterdam! 

Aquarius paints are from Poland, specially developed by Roman Szmal Art The palette includes 140 full pans with 117 mono pigments, 34 earth tones made from natural rock pigments, and 8 modern quinacridone colours. It has several separating paints, among which there are unique tones as: Aquarius Green, Przybysz’s Grey, Ocean Blue, and olive greens.


You’d be impressed to know that all Aquarius watercolors have an excellent lightfastness (minimum rating of 7 on Blue Wool Scale), which means the colors will not fade for at least 100 years (if applied correctly).

These high quality pans are truly one of a kind as they are individually wrapped with hand painted watercolour samples of the exact paint that’s contained inside. There’s absolutely no guessing what pigment you’re getting! Check out Jane Blundell’s unboxing YouTube video.They are perfect for layering as most of the pigments are transparent Having a chemical background, Roman has worked with various local and international artists at the early stages when he was still developing this range.


Check out some of the brilliant testimonies here:


Aquarius watercolours will also be available at the Symposium Art Market for you to try! Visit their booth and check out their unique blend and spectrum of colors!

For more information visit


Video Correspondent at #USkAmsterdam2019


Teoh Yi Chie, more widely known as Parka of Parka Blogs, is an avid urban sketcher and blogger from Singapore. On his blog and YouTube channel, he posts about art related stuff, reviews about books he reads and collects.

During the Urban Sketchers International Symposium in Singapore and Manchester, Teoh was a video correspondent who captured all the excitement before, during, and after the Symposium with his on-camera reportage and, of course, his on-location sketches.

For those who couldn’t be at the Symposium, it was a great way of being part of the event, joining along from wherever they are. For those who could make it, it was a great daily recap in case they missed anything and get reminded of what to check out the next day.

This year, Teoh will be in Amsterdam as an official video correspondent to take us all through major highlights and a front seat to all the happenings from his lens and sketches!

Follow his YouTube channel to get the juiciest Symposium action, sketching tips and art reviews.

Every month, you can also catch his column in Drawing Attention regarding art supplies.

For more information, check out his blog.

Reach him via the contact pageGoogle+ or Facebook.


SPONSOR POST: da Vinci Artist Brushes



Travel brushes in different shapes – Highest quality for Urban Sketching

What could be more beautiful for Urban Sketching than bringing ideas and impressions

directly onto paper or sketchbook with brushes and paint? Da Vinci has added the

CASANEO line to its tried and tested range of travel brushes to ensure that the right tools are

available for painting on journeys or in urban environments. The “da Vinci” CASANEO line is

characterized by its extreme color absorption. The even and liquid application of water colour

or liquid acrylic paint guarantees precise strokes, particularly important for the application of

colour when sketching in nature.

Travel brushes, made with extra soft synthetic “wavy” CASANEO fibres with extraordinary

elasticity and extremely high colour absorbency are available in the traditional round shape

(Series 1593TP), and more recently, also as traditional wash brushes (Series 1598TP), as

a “sword” with slanted edge (Series 1597TP) and in the flat shape (Series 893TP). Each

beautiful type is carefully shaped by hand into a perfect brush body and a very fine tip and

the travel brush heads are safely protected. A printed pictogram shows the user which brush

head is hidden inside each case. da Vinci recommends the CASANEO assortment also to all those artists who prefer a vegan lifestyle.


Artist statements:



When I am sketching I want to have good brushes with me. The Casaneo travel

brushes offer a good quality, are vegan and their case is bigger than other travel

brushes, so you don’t struggle to fit the hair inside, 

Omar Jaramillo



The da Vinci Casaneo Round Travel Brush No 2, part of the 1598 Series, is a joy to

use. Holds enormous amounts of colour, and the soft bristles allow for beautiful

strokes. The No 2 size does everything I need it to do. It’s perfect to carry around

when urban sketching. Da Vinci, well done!

Mohan Banerji

The wide product range of da Vinci contains artist brushes, craft and school brushes, make-

up brushes as well as top-quality tools for dental and nail technicians. da Vinci uses highest

quality materials, traditional craft and the most up-to-date production processes to ensure

perfect quality standards for our entire assortment.


Production premises are located in Nuremberg, Germany.

da Vinci Artist Brushes – from the specialist for the specialist

Further information can be found at or on the da Vinci artist brush


Kuenstlerpinsel-app.html or, at the Urban Sketching Symposium on the da Vinci stand, booth #7.


Check out Da Vinci’s video playlist



Pictures: 893TP.jpg, 1593TP.jpg, 1597TP.jpg, 1598TP.jpg, Reisepinsel.jpg © da Vinci

Venice sketches: © Mohan Banerji,

Mood picture: © Omar Jaramillo,

Logo: da Vinci Artist Brushes, CASANEO, Urban Sketching, da Vinci vegan




At the 10th Urban Sketchers International Symposium in Amsterdam, we are grateful and honoured to have SMLT Art as one of our sponsors. 

SMLT Art creates smiles and it goes a long way. From its team’s joy in bringing its vision to life, to working together in a company that loves what it does, to the happiness and satisfaction of artists who use their products, to the betterment of the environment, SMLT Art is all about fun in every way! 

Founded in 2000, it started art production in 2013. Having an assortment of 120 art products, it is now available in 32 countries around the world. With about 20 charity sponsorship events organized last year, it is 2018’s Socially Responsible Company of the year, as acknowledged by ICC Lithuania. A clear choice for artists, SMLT Art is not just big on art. It’s also big on soul. 

SMLT Art’s Authentic line caters for all creation needs. With 14 different types of paper for various drawing techniques, they are ideal for pencils, pens, watercolour, markers, pastels and even oil, acrylic and many more. Convenient for travelling, they offer various possibilities to personalize folders, stitch albums and even draw in panoramic format! The attractive covers inspire creativity. 

For artists on the go who love sketchbooks that open flat to capture every detail without gaps, their square handbound Layflat albums are perfect with real stone covers ! Yet they are only about 600 grams in weight and come in three types of paper.

SMLT Art PRO line are products made for professionals, but highly recommended for everybody. Available in four types of best quality paper, they are suitable for watercolor, pencil, oil, acrylic and mixed media. Works of modern Lithuanian artists adorn the covers of this high quality line.

STAR T line is perfect for those taking their first steps in the art world. The products are great for those who want higher quality papers as they learn and develop different drawing techniques. With 7 different types of paper, they are also suitable for advanced sketchers who use a varied range of media and techniques.

Look out for SMLT Art products. They have the needs of every creative in mind. There is something for everyone! Get to know their #stonebook, the first sketch album with a real stone cover, and the very popular SMLT Art Authentic line of products, an international favourite.


Watch #stonebook in action.  

For more information about their company and products visit or find them in social media @smltart. Tag your works with #smltart. They will be delighted to see your work and share the joys of the creations you make with their products.


SPONSOR POST: Quarto Group



This year at the Urban Sketchers International Symposium in Amsterdam, we are pleased and honoured to have The Quarto Group as one of our sponsors. They will be represented at the venue to celebrate with us our 10th Symposium with a range of sketching-related and inspiring books. 

The books in their Urban Sketching Handbook series contain a treasury of secrets from well-loved urban sketchers who have been drawing on location for many years. Each book offers a bounty of lessons, tips, and techniques for sketching on location for anyone venturing to pick up a pencil and capture the world. These are great field guides for sketchers on the go.




Their latest editions are Working with Color by Shari Blaukopf and, coming this November,101 Sketching Tips by Stephanie Bower. Both authors are instructors this year as well as a lot of featured artists in their series.

Take a look inside the pages and artwork from Working with Color!






Look out for The Urban Sketching Handbooks at the Symposium and don’t miss their special Symposium book selections !

For more information on The Quarto Group and their wonderful products, visit and find all the Urban Sketching Handbooks at



The Quarto Group is the leading global illustrated non-fiction book publisher and distribution group. Since 1976, their mission has been to make and sell great books that entertain, educate, and enrich the lives of adults and children around the globe.


SPONSOR POST: Faber Castell



Urban Sketchers Symposium 2019 Amsterdam: 


Blog on Faber-Castell




In a café, on the marketplace, in the tram – urban sketchers and hobby artists are offered many characteristic scenes from everyday life in the streets which are worth being captured. Whether for quick drafts or colouring sketches – these artists’ tools are the perfect companions for all creatives on the lookout for artistic motifs out there. 


Creative on the move – with the Faber-Castell water brush 


A good brush can do more than just paint. The water brush with bristles made from high-quality nylon threads is a truly multi-functional helper. Just unscrew it, fill it with water, and it’s good to go. That makes it the perfect choice for all urban sketchers and other professional and amateur artists who need a handy alternative to real hair brushes and water cups when they’re on the move. The water brush also has a useful cap that can be used for various scratching and scraping techniques. 




Indispensable for sketchers: the new Albrecht Dürer watercolour markers 

With the new water-based Albrecht Dürer watercolour marker, watercolours can be brought to paper very precisely – even on the move! The marker has two tips: the stable tip is ideal for contours, detailed drawings and precise lines. With the flexible brush tip, flat and even multi-layered paint jobs and dynamic sketches can be realized. Albrecht Dürer watercolour marker stand out for their high lightfastness. To achieve classic watercolour effects, the colours are painted after application with a wet brush. This shows their particularly good miscibility, and thanks to the high pigmentation they unfold an extraordinary, brilliant radiance. Even dry, the pens can be used in a variety of ways, e.g. as a layout marker. The luminous and lightfast watercolours are the perfect companions on the go!


For versatile and creative applications: Ecco Pigment fineliner 

In our fully digitised world, creative applications that require only a pen and paper are gaining in popularity. A growing number of people want to reveal their creativity in an individual, unique manner, such as urban sketching. A useful creative tool for this is the Ecco Pigment fineliner, equipped with a highly pigmented, lightfast ink. The usage options for sketchers are endless: as a line drawing, for highlighting in watercolour or acrylic pictures, for quick sketches while on the move etc. On absorbent surfaces, the Ecco Pigment does not bleed through the paper and can be corrected on transparent paper with an ink eraser. And the fineliner impresses with its waterproof qualities: Contours do not blur, even if watercolour is applied.

Ecco Pigment fineliners are available with line widths from 0.05 to 0.8 mm and make a valuable contribution towards the sustainability of the Faber-Castell range: the barrel and the cap produced from recycled plastic.



The international Faber-Castell Group

Founded in 1761, Faber-Castell is one of the world’s oldest industrial companies and since nine generations in the hands of the same family. Today it is represented in more than 120 countries and has its own production sites in nine countries and sales companies in 23 countries worldwide. Faber-Castell is the world’s leading manufacturer of wood-cased pencils, producing over 2 billion black-lead and colour pencils per year. Its leading position on the international market is due to its traditional commitment to the highest quality and the large number of product innovations.

The Art & Graphic range

Held in high esteem by professionals and hobbyists alike the Art & Graphic range of Faber-Castell combines the best from more than 250 years of experience in developing and manufacturing exclusive artists’ products. Famous artists and designers such as Vincent van Gogh, Paul Klee, Neo Rauch, Alex Katz and Karl Lagerfeld have endorsed the wide spectrum of colour nuances and the premium quality offered by the range, which has not changed to this day. Outstanding product features such as maximum lightfastness, smooth colour laydown and brilliant colour intensity help artists to create timeless works of art


SPONSOR POST: Wallace Seymour Fine Art Products





Having been a sponsor at the International Symposium in Manchester in 2016, we are grateful to have Wallace Seymour Fine Art Products back to grace our 10th International Symposium in Amsterdam! 

Rebecca Wallace and Pip Seymour formed their bespoke art materials company in 2011. Aside from both being established artists, they had a common interest in the chemistry of colour. A labor of love, their painstaking business efforts of trial and error was a slow, expensive endeavour that gave them less easel time but more fulfillment in seeing the great work other artists produced with their products.

They began to create a programme of high quality painting and drawing materials, made under their control and with their shared vision to provide artists with the maximum potential for expression through colour. They looked at long forgotten colours, alongside ancient and modern pigments to create colour palettes to suit the needs of the most progressive and challenging artists.

Their production benefits from over twenty years of experience within the art materials industry and the knowledge gained through this and through their practice as artists. To this end they have created unique ranges of oil, acrylic, watercolour (tube and pan), gouache, hand-made soft pastel, hand-made drawing materials, primers and painting mediums.

In addition to their paint ranges, they have introduced a comprehensive selection of dry pigments, many of which are sourced from original quarries and processed within their own production. They continue to source and research new materials, from precious plant colours to brand new modern synthetics, alongside production of a new generation of painting mediums, binders and varnishes.

Before addition to the catalogue, they test the products by using it themselves and by garnering feedback from other artists, whose comments they trust and respect.

A strong supporter of art shops and art communities, they treasure the wisdom of people who use and know an incredible lot about materials. Now they supply more than 50 stores in UK, as well as France, Italy, Ireland, South Korea, Australia, Canada, and the Czech Republic.



Give their unique products a try, find out more about the stories behind their piments, and check out their exquisite range at our Art Market.

Know more about Wallace Seymour Art Products at:

SPONSOR POST: Viviva Colorsheets




We thank Viviva Colorsheets for supporting Urban Sketchers International Symposium 2019 all the way from India. Viviva Colorsheets are incredibly vibrant watercolors in the form of super-saturated sheets of color. Designed to be used on the go, they’re no bigger than a credit card and can easily fit in one’s pocket.



Viviva is a small, family operated company that aims to promote the joy of painting in the moment to everyone. Viviva got off to a flying start with immense backing from the global artist community for their Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign and is humbled to have customers in over 90 countries now.
As a young, innovative company, Viviva is honoured to be at #USkAmsterdam2019 in the category of art companies alongside leading artists and companies from all over the globe. Viviva hope that their core value of ‘Art and Artists’ First’ translates through each set and aids in their continual growth within the art community for a long time to come.

Viivia would love for you to visit their stall {#3} at the Urban Sketchers International Symposium in Amsterdam, to try out their color and to share ideas on what new innovations could be created in art together!


Check out their video!

For more information, visit their
Website: @vivivacolors



Discover Derwent at the Urban Sketching Symposium


July 2019 – Derwent is marking 2019 in style, with a second appearance at the Urban Sketching Symposium. 


The British fine art brand is joining us in Amsterdam throughout July 24 – 27 displaying their expertly crafted pencils, pens and accessory collections. 


Whether you’re planning to create gritty urban scenes or beautiful rolling landscapes, Derwent products have the versatility, bold selection of colours and strength for creating in all weather conditions, anywhere in the world. 

Derwent create a selection of innovative art materials year-after-year that allows urban sketchers, artists and illustrators to push boundaries every time they get the creative urge. 


Recently, Derwent have launched the Paint Pen collection, a lightweight pen in a selection of highly lightfast colours with a Japanese nib.


Ideal for fine detail, the Paint Pens feature 20 shades that are both blendable, bleed proof and quick drying ensuring art that stays on the pad, whatever the weather!


Testing with renowned urban sketcher Ian Fennelly, Derwent Paint Pens do much more than thin lines and can be used for a range of different styles – from splats to painterly style landscapes with the simple addition of a water-brush or paint brush. 


Ian triumphed Derwent’s Paint Pens and said: “Combined with other Derwent materials, the Derwent Paint Pens helped me add depth, texture and tonal value to my finished pieces.”

Even better, Derwent’s Paint Pens can be used in conjunction with a selection of Derwent products, including the recently launched Inktense Paint Pan Set.

The Inktense Paint Pan Set was developed to bridge the gap between pencils and paint, offering Inktense’s unique properties in a portable medium.

Ian was instrumental in the testing and development process of the product, both in the factory and in the field and has quickly made the Inktense Paint Pan Set a mainstay of his art box.

Ian said: “The intensity of the colour is incredible; they really make my artwork stand out. As each layer you put down sets permanently, you can layer on top and get a real richness of colour.

“The Inktense Paint Pan Set activates quickly with water, which is ideal for an urban sketcher as you often have to work quickly to capture the energy of the moment or avoid bad weather.”



Find out more about Ian’s use of Inktense Paint Pan Set in this short video:

Across Ian’s portfolio, you’ll see a collection of artworks inspired by locations from across the world, including his home city of Liverpool. In each of his pieces, Ian also keeps returning to Derwent’s Line Maker range – which has recently been expanded to include coloured pens alongside the traditional sepia, graphite and black options.



The range features a super fine nib, ideal for detailing and a quick-drying, bleed proof pigment ink. They have quickly become Ian’s go-to material, thanks to their vivid shades, versatility and consistency on the page.

Used for creating shape and texture, Derwent’s Line Maker range have become synonymous with Ian’s work.


“Due to the range of colours across the traditional, black, sepia and graphite ranges, I can create so much with a single product.

“They offer much more than a typical pen and are a must have in any urban sketching arsenal.”

Alongside typical urban sketching, Derwent Line Makers are perfect for hand-lettering and writing.

“Visit us at Derwent stand 04 on Wednesday 24th July from 4-5pm to see Ian demonstrate the Inktense Pan Set. For further information on Derwent’s full range of products #DerwentArt”

For more information on Derwent products


Instagram @derwentartofficial.



Symposium Sketchwalks



The 10th International Symposium sketchwalks in Amsterdam are free and pointing us to varied and specific character areas within the city to give everyone the best sketching experience! The general public is welcome and encouraged to join.

There will be two sketchwalk locations in the morning and four in the afternoon. This gives plenty of time and space to spread out, meet new friends, draw together, and explore the areas at your own pace. For easy navigation, there are only two defined location points to remember – one to meet fellow sketchers and the end point to share discoveries. Everyone is free to start when they want to, form their own groups, and draw as they please. Just be there at the end point for show & tell and the group photo. Don’t miss the final photo after the final sketchwalk!

For those who want to explore further, there are suggested locations and themed walks. If you are not in any workshops, don’t worry there will be loads of opportunities to sketch and get the most out of the Symposium.

Are you ready? For the full information regarding the sketchwalks, timings, locations, and meeting points click here.

Symposium Closing Reception

Image may contain: sky, outdoor and text


Due to the overwhelming requests from our community, we have a new location in Amsterdam to celebrate the 10th Symposium’s Closing Reception on 27th July 2019, Saturday!


Justifiably calling itself Amsterdam’s Concert Hall of the 21st century, Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ is a spectacular building which is a leading and extremely versatile international stage. As a home for contemporary classical and jazz music, linking together different functions, eras, genres and art forms, it aims to surprise and inspire a broad audience.


The Symposium Closing Reception celebrates the end of one symposium and welcomes the next, with the announcement of USk Symposium 2020’s host city. Also included in the evening’s program is the Silent Auction, where everyone can bid for a chance to bring an original piece of artwork home, and the Raffles Draw, where anyone can try their luck to bring home fabulous art materials, generously sponsored by event partners.

Of course, not forgetting, a wonderful evening of camaraderie amongst the urban sketchers family and their friends.


Each entry ticket is at €30 for Early Bird sale online (€35 at the door and subject to availability).

Tickets sold are non-refundable, but transferrable.


Attention : Entry to Closing Reception is included for Symposium Pass holders, Faculty, Staff and Volunteers with official Symposium name tags. Just present your Symposium tags at entrance.


Be part of the closing reception! Grab your tickets here:



Symposium Drink and Draw Location

Urban Sketchers Netherlands in front of Amstelhoeck
Photo Credit: Gail Howard 

Every year, the Symposium has a place where sketchers from all over the world can meet after a long day of sketching and exploring the host city. Whether you have a Symposium Pass or not, it is where you can meet sketching friends, whom you already know for a long time but only had chance to talk to on social media. get together with new friends, and reunite with those from previous symposiums.

We are happy to announce this year’s Drink and Draw location for the International Urban Sketchers Symposium in Amsterdam: Amstelhoeck.

Amstelhoeck is a unique Grand Cafe located on the Amstel, a stone’s throw from our main venue, Zuiderkerk. The Grand Cafe has a large terrace with perhaps the best view of Amsterdam on the Amstel river, Munt Tower and typical canal houses. You can see many boats passing by.

As a special welcome to participants with a Symposium Pass, Amstelhoeck offers 10% discount off your bill if you show your Symposium Pass on symposium days.

“Tot ziens bij Amstelhoeck!”


Accommodation Promo in Amsterdam

Whether you want to be at the heart of the capital city, at the middle of the most famous park in the Netherlands or at the centre of a truly Amsterdam experience, Stayokay Amsterdam has three unique hostels in beautiful locations! They’re all easily accessible, have friendly staff, have picture perfect views, and equipped to make your stay a pleasurable and memorable one!

Use the promo code to avail of their limited offer!




Discount: 10% discount on regular overnight stay exl. breakfast and tourist tax

Hostels: Amsterdam Oost, Vondelpark & Stadsdoelen

Booking period: 1 April to 31 May 2019

Period of residence: 17 July to 4 August 2019

Terms & Conditions:

  • Based on availability
  • Not in combination with other discounts
  • Valid up to 12 people per booking
  • Based on a shared room/dorm
  • Non-refundable

Check out and check in at



Things to Know Before You Arrive in Amsterdam

Sketch: Cafe ‘t Molentje, Singel, by Christiaan Afman


Excitement builds up as we get closer to the Symposium dates! Urban Sketchers Netherlands has prepared a comprehensive article on must-haves, accommodation, travel, weather and helpful reminders that are essential to know before you start packing for the 10th International Urban Sketchers Symposium in Amsterdam. Check out the article here.

The Frequently Asked Questions article is also a good must-read if you haven’t yet. We update it often so be sure to check it in case you have some questions.



Registration for Symposium Pass – sold out

We are officially SOLD OUT of Symposium Pass.  Over 500 sketchers had successfully registered for a Symposium Pass!

If you are still keen on a Symposium Pass we advise you to check back at the Symposium registration site occasionally, in case a slot opens up, due to cancellations/refunds.  We had already processed some refunds and these freed up passes had also been snapped up, as soon as they popped up on the registration site.

Otherwise, please come and join us at all the free sketchwalks, the ticketed Lectures that will open up in May! and of course the Drink and Draw after the Symposium each day.

Watch this space for more information on the Lectures, Sketchwalks and others.


Get Set!

Ticket sales for Symposium Pass opens FEB 2nd, 3PM CET. (check your local time HERE)




pssst! Sign up for an Eventbrite account, it is free! To expedite the process, we recommend that you have all your information entered with your Eventbrite user account, including personal and payment information.  


New Year News

Let’s start the year with fresh #uskamsterdam2019 updates so you can plan your Symposium adventure along with your New Year’s Resolutions.

We have put together a comprehensive FAQ which covers an overview regarding the ins and outs and everything you need to know about the Symposium.

Mark your calendars! Registration starts on February 2nd, 2019 at 15:00hrs CET (check for your local time here).

To help you select in advance, take a look at the 
Workshops and Instructors line-up 



Check out the Symposium Pass and General Access schedules for your reference on how the days will go for both. See what suits you best.


Wishing everyone a wonderful year of urban sketching and discovering the world with each other one drawing at a time. Happy 2019!


Watch this space for more information.


Congratulations to the Symposium Scholarship Recipients!



Every year, Urban Sketchers awards 10 Symposium Workshop Passes to sketchers from the host city. In the spirit of sharing the joy and promoting urban sketching to the local community, Urban Sketchers congratulates this year’s grantees!

The lucky 10 scholarship recipients for the 10th Urban Sketchers International Symposium in Amsterdam, Netherlands are: Vaishali Rajurkar, Christiaan Afman, Richard Venema, Jan Baggen, Kitty van den Heuvel, Isis van der Knaap, Bern de Klerk, Rens de Kooker, Francesca Mazza, and Floor van Hoorn.

Vaishali Rajurkar is a young lady who joined the Urban Sketchers Den Haag recently. Having moved from India to The Netherlands, she joined the USk Den Haag to get to know people. She made a big impression within the local chapter by picking up urban sketching quickly, reaching out to other people and also offering to volunteer at the Symposium.

Christian Afman lives in Groningen and is one of the local chapter organisers. Furthermore he has given many and various workshops the past years at local and national events. He generously shares his experience and stimulates other urban sketchers. Everybody who has watched him rapidly blind contour sketching will remember him well.

Many people got to know Richard Venema through his help in orgranising the first national sketch day in the Netherlands and he continues to be an active organiser in the local Utrecht chapter. He is well-liked throughout the Dutch urban sketchers community because he is always friendly and willing to help people who are new to urban sketching.

Like more urban sketchers Jan Baggen is originally a painter and through the Urban Sketchers Gelderland he got into urban sketching. The local chapter organiser nominated Jan because he’s impressed by his capacity to make beautiful urban sketches by using just a twig.

Kitty van den Heuvel is a very active organiser for Utrecht Urban Sketchers. She organises monthly events and recently the exhibition “Utrecht gezien door Urban Sketchers”. She likes to socialise and makes people feel welcome. Art and creativity are important in her life, she always tries new ways in her urban sketching and is eager to learn more.

The next scholarship is for Isis van der Knaap. She is a student at AHK Breitner Academy, studying to become an art teacher. For Isis urban sketching is a means to get to know her environment better, exploring a closer, more intimate relationship with it.

Bern de Klerk lives in Opperdoes. In his application for a scholarship he stated wanting to return to traditional analog drawing from his current mainly digital painting and drawing. He has been focusing on the human figure as of late but is eager to broaden his horizon by learning about architecture. It is Bern’s ambition to enter the Amsterdam Academy of Arts after finishing his education as Game Artist at Mediacollege Amsterdam.

Rens de Kooker always carries a sketchbook to be ready to make small drawings. She’s been a keen sketcher all her life, but finds it does not come easy to her. She’s determined to develop her skills and benefits from the sketch lessons at her education in Built Environment at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences.

Francesca Mazza would like to explore and understand the urban changes better. She thinks looking at details of windows, doors, lamps, etc. will help in that process. Francesca studies architecture at the Amsterdam Academy of Arts and she wishes the Symposium will allow her to look at Amsterdam from a different perspective.

Floor van Hoorn is studying Built Environment at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. She greatly enjoys sketching and being outdoors, and the combination of both. She is new to urban sketching but has some experience in plein air watercolour painting. In her education she has practiced perspective drawing and we all know this is of great benefit when starting out as an urban sketcher.

Congratulations to all of you! Enjoy sketching, learning, and meeting sketchers from all over world at the Symposium in Amsterdam!



Thanks to USk NL Symposium Team for compiling and preparing a write-up of each of the candidates so we can get to know them a better.




Congratulations, Cara Christine Mitchel! You won a Workshop Pass for the 10th International Urban Sketchers Symposium 2019 in Amsterdam, Netherlands! Registration instructions will be shared by December 2018. The prize/registration is non-transferrable.

Thanks to you and everyone who participated in the Porto Accommodation Survey this year. You helped Urban Sketchers and USk Portugal to get a grant from the Tourism Bureau, which contributed to funding the Symposium’s operational and volunteers’ expenses. Your cooperation is highly appreciated!


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Call for Programming is Officially Closed

We would like to thank everyone for their enthusiasm and submissions. The Urban Sketchers International Symposium 2019 in Amsterdam, Netherlands, will definitely be a great experience!

The Education Committee will carefully go through the proposals and will announce the official programming lineup in January.

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Get Your Tag On!  #uskamsterdam2019


The official hashtag for next year’s International Symposium is #uskamsterdam2019. 

Follow the hashtag to easily get updates and all the buzz for next year! If you have some inspiring information, sketches and related stuff about the Symposium, include the hashtag in your posts so others can easily find them and join the excitement!

Keep your eyes on Adam, the heron!…oops, the hashtag! #uskamsterdam2019

See you in Amsterdam 🙂


2019 Urban Sketchers International Symposium Host City

Click here for the announcement video!


The 10th International Urban Sketchers Symposium will be hosted by Urban Sketchers Netherlands in Amsterdam.

The Dutch capital city has a history that dates back to the 13th century, and nowadays is a world city with historic as well as modern architecture. It has inspired artists for centuries with its idyllic bridges, canal houses and cobblestones.

Amsterdam hosts 180 nationalities so everyone will feel right at home. It has everything you need for spending a perfect day in the city. Hosting world-class museums, it’s not just decked with old canals, charming gabled facades, drawbridges, and windmills but also with cutting-edge modern design like the EYE Filmmuseum. Truly an urban sketchers paradise!

See you at the 10th International Urban Sketchers Symposium in Amsterdam, Netherlands!

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