Thursday, March 26, 2020

Practice Instructions for the Second Virtual Sketch Event

The event will take place this coming Saturday, starting at 10 AM (ET) 

Practice Information You’ll Need for Saturday

We will be using Google Maps, and their Street View Feature.  If you are already familiar with the technology you can practice using the information below.  If you’re unfamiliar I think you’re going to love this.

Google has been mapping the entire world using special high resolution cameras. I've seen their cars recording in NYC driving up and down the streets.   It’s easy to visit almost anywhere you like, virtually walking the streets and exploring.  You can compose pleasing compositions to draw from.

Here's several helpful YouTube videos that can help you get started:

How to Use Google Map Street View - Explore the World From Home: 
This 4 minute video will teach you the basics and will show you what to expect.

Learn Google Earth: Street View:  
This 2 minute video has additional information.

How To Use Google Earth (Street View) to Research Properties Remotely:
This video is intended to help you research real estate remotely.  You can skip the first two minutes which don’t apply to what we’re doing.

You can access Google Maps on a computer, a tablet or a smart phone. This can be your starting point to explore almost anywhere in the world.   I find it much easier to do this on a computer.  Doing this on a smart phone provides an imafge that I think is too small, however  it will work with whatever you’ve got.


Let’s practice by taking a walk around Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village.  Click on the link directly above.

You'll see a map of NYC with a view of the park.  To move from the map view to the street view look  for the icon of a little yellow man.  (He looks like a gingerbread man.)  Using your mouse (or your finger on a tablet) you can pick him up and drop him on the map.  The scene will change to the view of the street.

Use the controls, your finger or your mouse to navigate on the street, move left and right exploring the block you’re on, turning corners.  It's the way you would explore a street if you were walking except it's virtual!  You can also look up at tall buildings or down at the ground.  You  can also zoom in and out, reading signs or getting a wider view of things.

In other words you can explore, find a view you like and then compose the picture you want to sketch. You’ll notice the pedestrian’s faces are blurred for privacy reasons, so are license plates, etc.

Your controls might vary depending on what kind of computer you're using,  what kind of browser you have, or if you’re using a tablet or a phone.  However the principles are the same.  Be bold in exploring.  Try a few things.  Find the home where you grew up, visit your old school, etc.  It’s incredible how many places you can visit virtually.

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Get comfortable using the technology and we’ll have an interesting time together on Saturday.

All the details of where we’ll be going and what we’ll be doing will be shared at the start of the event.  If you’re late, or in a different time zone the instructions will be posted to the NYC Urban Sketchers Facebook Group.

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