Urban Sketchers: These Kerala artists gather every Sunday to pursue their passion – The New Indian Express | Candle Made Easy

Express Message Service

THRISSUR: Historic buildings, a group of like-minded people and lots of art, this is a Sunday morning for any urban sketcher in Thrissur district. A community of artists, Urban Sketchers Thrissur, organizes gatherings every Sunday to sketch on site. These art enthusiasts leave their lazy Sunday morning routine behind and visit interesting architecture to pursue their passion for art and connect with people.

On August 7th, the Urban Sketchers gathered at the Ittyanath Madom, a building constructed during the reign of the Cochin royal family. The structure, surrounded by lush greenery, attracted many young artists and made it difficult for them to decide what to draw.

For Vrinda, a mother of two and a lecturer at Sree Kerala Varma College, the Urban Sketchers session was liberating. It was her first session. While drawing has always been her passion, it took a backseat when she became a mother. When she joined the session after much planning, Vrindra enjoyed every part of it and was really happy.

According to Ravindranath Balakrishnan, founder of the Thrissur chapter of Urban Sketchers, it is a platform for passionate artists to network with other artists and practice their art. Ravindranath is from Thrissur, is based in Vietnam and attended the Urban Sketchers sessions there. Ravindranath, based on the experience and notoriety he had gained through the sessions in Vietnam, decided to create such a platform in the Capital of Culture, where artists are present at every corner.

“Since the first meeting in March we have had a great response. Art school students, architecture students, housewives, working women and retired professionals come together under one roof to draw and share their experiences,” said Krishnakumar, who flies to Thrissur once a month to coordinate Urban Sketchers’ activities.

Amritha Samuel K, an architecture student at the GEC, has attended all Urban Sketchers sessions and finds it interesting to interact with other artists. “As an architecture student, this platform helps me to understand different historical structures. But most of all, it’s the passion for drawing that drives me to be a part of it,” she said.

Sumesh Ashokan, a bank clerk, comes all the way from Irinjalakkuda to attend the program as it refreshes his mind. Niranjana Varma, who owns an art studio called Palavaka in Ittyanath Madom, sees Urban Sketchers’ sessions as an opportunity to master her art. “As we get busier in life, we become too lazy to practice art. For me, this platform helps bring back the disciplined student in me that makes an effort to practice and improve the skill,” she said.

The Urban Sketchers have so far drawn Thrissur’s landmarks such as Sakthan Palace, Kollengode Palace, the Government Engineering College and the Fine Arts College. The session in “Puthanpalli”, the Basilica of Our Lady of Dolours, was also a wonderful experience for the artists.

“When we make drawings on site, we’re not just sketching the buildings or streets, but the lives of the people associated with them,” Ravendranath said. Urban Sketchers Thrissur plans to organize a big meeting in September when they have completed 25 sessions.

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