Urban Sketching for Beginners

91,92 TUTOR: Mark Peskett

On holiday, taking in the scenery have you thought "I would love to paint this” or walking down a sunny street, wondering how you could paint what you see? If so, this is the course for you! The pen and wash technique is ideal to quickly capture those moments into a sketchbook either whilst on location or from a photograph. Learning the techniques and using observational skills, you will paint loose, vibrant and colourful urban scenes in a sketchbook. The emphasis is on practical skills in sketching, painting and pen work, interspersed with key theoretical necessities.

4 AM
AM course
4 PM
PM course

Course Notes

The course is designed for the classroom with sessions outside within the grounds of Marlborough college should the weather be suitable and as students wish.

Day 1 Getting to know the equipment and first steps Brushes, paper, sketchbooks, paints, pens, inks, pencils, palettes other equipment used in the course. Getting to know your equipment, preliminary washes. Composition. Focal point. Single point perspective. Successful sketching from a photo. Sketching using pencil using single point perspective. Organising your palette. Colour mixing on the paper and on the palette.

Day 2 Colour theory, two point perspective. The colour wheel. Basic colour theory: Chroma, tone, tint and value. Understanding colour mixing using 3 warm primary colours and 3 cool primary colours. Make your own swatches. Earth tones. Two point perspective. Form and shadows Sketching using pencil using two point perspective. Colour mixing on the paper and on the palette. Produce a sketch.

Day 3 Landscapes and urban sketching Aerial perspective and colour temperature. Sketching a landscape from a photo. Sketching a simple urban scene in watercolour from a reference photo.

Day 4 More possibilities with pens. Pens and how you can incorporate them into your sketches. Sketch using pen and wash. Sketching using pen and wash.

Day 5 Putting it all together Practical: It is envisaged that two to three sketches will be completed by each student in the last session with each individual being offered one to one help on how to improve.

Course Tutor

Mark Peskett

About Mark

. Bio After retiring in his mid 50's Mark Peskett took up watercolour in 2014, his introduction was a beginners class in Marlborough college Summer school! He has, along his artistic journey learnt numerous other techniques including portraiture in oils having spent a year with a master. He paints local scenes in watercolour and pen and wash in and around Wiltshire which are exhibited locally. He travels with a sketchbook and tries to sketch daily. He has seen and experienced the many pitfalls in his artistic journey: over complicated teaching, lack of clear guidance for beginners, buying unnecessary or inadequate equipment and materials and getting lost in an overwhelming array of "must haves”. His philosophy is now "keeping it simple” with a focus on mastering a small inventory of materials that are used to great effect and are easily transportable for sketching whilst on holiday or whenever the desire takes him.


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All courses run for 5 days

WK 1 8 Jul - 12 Jul

WK 2 15 Jul - 19 Jul

WK 3 22 Jul - 26 Jul

WK 4 29 Jul - 2 Aug

Morning Courses

9.15AM to 12.15PM

Afternoon Courses

1.45PM to 4.30PM

All Day Courses

9.15AM to 4.30PM