Wednesday, July 29, 2020

SATURDAY:  Sketch Savannah - 
Life is Like a Box of Chocolates 
in the Garden of Good and Evil.

Hosted by Marion Hammon

Sketching Savannah: Exploring the History and Mystery of Georgia’s Oldest City

Savannah, GA is a sketcher’s paradise. A highly walkable city, it is renowned for its charming
public squares, gorgeous historic mansions, towering live oaks trailing Spanish moss, a fabulous
food scene, and a thriving seaport that dates to the city’s founding in the early 1700s. Savannah
has played a role in many turbulent chapters of American history, including the Revolutionary
War, Civil War, slavery and the cotton trade.

More recently, it’s been famous as the setting of the true crime bestseller Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, and as the site of classic Tom Hanks scenes (“Life is like a box of chocolates”) in Forrest Gump. Join us for a leisurely sketch tour to discover some the history and mysteries of Savannah (including the story of a distinctive regional color, and the surprising social prestige of a certain type of fruit).

We’ll begin the day by exploring the verdant squares and beautiful mansions of Savannah’s
Historic District.

Mercer House (429 Bull Street) can be our starting point in Google Maps to virtually “walk
around” the area in Google maps and find good sketching spots:,+Savannah,+GA+31401/@32.0712634,-

If virtually walking around in Google maps doesn’t grab you (after all, it’s really hot and humid
in Savannah in July!), skip Google Maps and find inspiration from these links:

Squares and historic homes Google images (all Creative Commons license)

In the afternoon, we’ll check out the edges of Savannah and beyond, with lots to sketch around
the River Street waterfront area and in the atmospheric Bonaventure Cemetery (which made a
cameo appearance in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil) a few miles from the center of

Waterfront history and River Street area:

River Street Google images (Creative Commons license) 

Bonaventure Cemetery: Google Images

Bonaventure Cemetery Flickr images (Creative Commons license) 

Click this link to register:

Note:  Registration closes on Friday at noon
The event starts on Saturday August 1, 2020 at 10 AM EDT

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

SATURDAY: Sketch the World's Great Gardens

Sketching Gardens 
a Virtual Event 
Hosted by Lois Bender

for Saturday, July 25, 2020

We can all love gardens. And they are a sanctuary to escape to in times of Pandemic. Some of us work and cultivate them for aesthetic beauty or as Victory Gardens for food or just look and enjoy and paint them!  Gardens are restorative. Voltaire’s Candide witnesses all the cruelties of mankind and the disasters of nature in all his world travels and finally sums up Voltaire's philosophy in the famous quote: “Let us Cultivate our Garden.”  Just tend your own small garden to make the world a better place. So I say  “Let us paint our Gardens!” 

 Here’s Several Beautiful Gardens to Paint!
Use Google Map Search and/or Google Image Search 
to find source material


Hidcote Manor Garden, a Cotswolds English Cottage Garden in the British “Arts & Crafts” style featuring hedges with doorways, outdoor rooms with dazzling flower beds, unique plantings and on and on!    


Monet’s Garden at Giverny, no introduction needed! The flower gardens are in the English cottage garden style and of course the famous water garden is Japanese-inspired….   


Luxembourg Gardens, Paris, the 1619 “Formal French Style” design by Boyceau commissioned by (Queen) Marie de Medici and inspired by the Boboli Gardens of Florence, her birthplace.…. with expansive lawns, terraces with balustrades, parterres, colorful flowers beds, urns of geraniums, stately chestnuts, statuary including the Queens of France, octagonal sailing boat pond, the Medici Fountain with a grotto and many panoramic vistas! A Gem developed over 400 years with expansive harmony, geometric balance and spaciousness! Proven by its popularity with Parisians and everyone else! Perfect for promenading and painting!  I’ve painted here many times and love it.   


The magnificent Majorelle Gardens of Marrakesh, Morocco….“It’s Blue!!!,”Contemporary, Mediterranean, Moroccan, French.    

A Cubist Villa & Truly An Artist’s Garden! Jacques Majorelle, Yves St. Laurent & Pierre Bergé

To Register for this Event, Click Here:
  • The virtual event starts at 10 AM EDT,
  • The afternoon event (different activities) starts at 1 PM EDT.
  • Registration closes on Friday at noon.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Weekly Theme: A Day At the Beach 

The Dog Days of Summer are here!  It is hot, it is humid.  Perfect weather for the beach!

Rockaway Beach, NY Guide: How to Plan the Perfect Day! | Hello ...

Sand, water, boardwalks and blankets make for a perfect day at the beach no matter where in the NY metro area you live. The sights, aromas and sounds of crowds, concession stands and amusement parks offer us a wide variety of subject matter for our sketching.  

Rockaway Beach

Wether in person or virtually,  a day at the beach evokes everything from beautiful sunrises, walks along the water, and fun at the boardwalk's concessions.  Capture the light on the water, the bathers dipping their toes into the surf or the people screaming as they careen around the roller coaster.  Come in for a closer view of beach memorabilia at the Coney Island Museum (managed by one of our own USKers, Marie Robert) and catch the Steeplechase iconic "Happy Face" or a fun house mirror in your sketchbook.  Or try to capture the colorful signs and amusement rides that are iconic to beachfronts everywhere. 
Coney Island | NYCEDC

For those willing to use the subways many of the beaches in Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx are only a Metrocard away.  Treat yourself to a ferry ride to the Rockaways.  The one hour ride from lower Manhattan is only the cost of a subway ride and you will feel as if you were on a long needed holiday.  (Ferries are running on a limited schedule and smaller capacity, but they are running).  Have a car? The choices are amazing all along Long Island and the Jersey Shore.  

So, pack a picnic lunch, a blanket and your sketchbook and enjoy a Day At the Beach!

thejoker1 - PopNerdTV
At Nathan's Hot-Dog Eating Contest, Champion Regains His Title - WSJ
Rainbow Fairy Floss | Stocksy United , cotton candy, japan ...

Thursday, July 9, 2020


An Insider's Guide to Grand Central Station
a Virtual Sketch Tour designed and hosted by Judy Garza

Morning Session:

Hidden Areas of GCT.

This version of Grand Central covers 76 acres. The train yard runs from 42 nd to 54 th on a double deck platform. This leaves a lot of room to explore. Prior to the pandemic, 750,000 people would go through GCT each day – from commuters to tourists to locals shopping. We will explore some of areas that you may have missed on your visits.

Afternoon Session:

Myths of the Terminal

Many people, often with large egos, have been involved in the building and renovating of the Terminal. We will explore some of the quirks that are associated with the building’s history, including: the painting of the constellations on the main ceiling, other artifacts of the ceiling, how correct is the time in the terminal, is it Vulcan or Hercules on the façade, where is the tree and why the rats?




Click here to see additional details and to register:
  • Registration closes at noon on Friday
  • The Virtual Sketch event starts at 10 AM on Saturday July 11, 2020

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

A virtual sketch tour of Spain 
hosted by Marta Moreira and Aaron Liebowitz

If you mention Spain most people imagine flamenco dancers, paella, tapas, bull fights and Spanish wines. But Spain is a much richer and diverse land, steeped in history and blessed with extraordinary visual beauty, in architecture, art, landscape and peoples.

On Saturday’s virtual sketch we will get to know Spain. Our two tour guides Aaron and Marta are well prepared. Marta calls Spain her home and for Aaron, Spain and Spanish culture has been a lifetime passion.

For more information and to register click here:

  • The Virtual Sketch event will start at 10 AM on Saturday July 4, 2020
  • Registration for the event closes on Friday at noon.