Brazil, part 5 – In the Mood


My own workshop during the Urban sketchers symposium in Paraty was called In the Mood. We worked with different ways to add more mood/atmosphere to our on-location sketches, by playing with different line qualities, colour schemes and contrasts.

Gabi Campanario had made these fantastic workshop tickets for everyone in the symposium, where several tickets from the same workshop put together made up example images from the instructors. Very clever and fun – it´s all in the details!


We started the workshop with group discussions about our associations to colours, lines and contrasts, and what mood they convey. This is of course not a subject with any right or wrong answers, rather it´s full of openings to discuss and compare views and thoughts. (Funny thing: the colour purple caused the most discussions, it seems we have different associations to it on the two sides of the Atlantic ocean. Interesting!)

As a starting point for the discussions, each group filled in a worksheet together, trying to figure out what tools to use to best convey different moods. (On the first workshop day, the rain was pouring down for a few hours. Fortunately, we found a kind café owner who let us use a few tables to work at.)



Then we did three sketches of Paraty “dressed” in different moods. Between each sketching session, the group met and compared sketches to see how the others met the challenge, and to seep up some ideas and inspiration from each other.

As always in Urban sketchers events, I am in awe over how open every participant is to sharing and discussing their work with others. I love it when everyone can let go of the final result and start to see the process as the important thing at hand. There is so much to learn from seeing how others work – while they are working, because workshop sketches are often not quite finished when the show-and-tell takes place – and the discussions around these sketchbook spreads are always a grand learning experience.


As usual when I´m leading a workshop, I am not focused on photographing, so unfortunately I didn´t manage to get a photo of all my workshop groups – wish I had. But at least I managed to get a snapshot of the last – and smallest – group. A big thank you to ALL participants of my workshops in Paraty, you all make preparing a workshop SO worthwhile! 🙂


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