Friday, November 17, 2017

Weekday Sketchers take a Thanksgiving Break

This is a reminder that there will be NO weekday sketchers event the week of November 20th because of the Thanksgiving holiday. 

Derek Buckner, “Gowanus,” oil on canvas, 32 x 46 inchesion

However, here is an urban art event you might like to check out.  The Lodge Gallery on Christie Street is hosting a show of urban landscape painters titled "The Outer Boroughs: Brooklyn, Queens & The Bronx".  It will be up until December 17th.  Hopefully you can take a break from holiday activities while giving yourself a small present by going to see this show.

Here is a link to the article about the show:

Our next Weekday Sketchers event will be on Wednesday November 29th.  Happy Thanksgiving!!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

SATURDAY: Sketch Sotheby’s … Plus

Saturday, November 18, 2017

The world famous Sotheby’s not only auctions works of art and other valuables, they also display them on many floors in galleries that are open to the public.

Founded in 1744 Sotheby's is the place to see exquisite highly sketchable art objects of all kinds - that then become available at their high profile auctions.   Collections are only up for a week or two, and they change constantly.

Click to enlarge

PLUSThe High School of Art and Design in holding their annual fundraising Draw-A-Thon. Grab your sketchbook, paints, brushes, pens; whatever your medium and join us.

The nine-hour drawing and painting event provides an opportunity for art students and professional artists to work side by side from a group of live models. Poses vary from short sessions of five minutes, twenty minutes and one hour poses. Extended poses of three and six hours are also be available.  There is a dedicated room for costume (heroic/cosplay) figure drawing and a separate room for nude/traditional figure drawing.

We’re going to skip our usual Show and Tell to support this event.


Where:  Sotheby’s  New York City, 1334 York Avenue - On the east side between 71st and 72nd Streets

When:  We will meet in the lobby at 10:00.  From 10:00 till 12:30, pick your spot and have fun sketching.  Please be respectful - this is a place of business filled with high value art objects.
The View from Sotheby's

Lunch12:30 we’ll head up to the Sotheby’s café on the 10th floor for lunch, chat, and sketching (of

Afternoon1:15 - return to the galleries or the lobby,... or try your hand at the views off the roof outside the café, if the weather is inviting.  The views are stunning.

The Draw-A-Thon -   3:00 For everyone who can’t get enough sketching we’re off to the High School of Art and Design, 245 East 56th Street (bet 2nd and 3rd Ave).  It’s a one mile walk or take the M31 bus down York Ave and across 57 St to 2nd Ave.  The event ends at 7 PM.

Directions to Sotheby’s:

-  The nearest subway stop is the Lexington Avenue local stop at 68th Street (the 6 train).  The express trains (the 4 and 5) stop at 59th Street and 86th Street.

-   The 72nd Street crosstown bus will take you right there; the 68th Street crosstown will get you to 68th and York.

-  If you’re coming by subway and the weather is bad, you can hop onto the 68th Street crosstown at Lex and 68th Street, instead of walking the four rather long blocks from the subway to York Avenue.

Can't find us?  
Call or Text Mark - 973-809-9128

There are no fees or attendance taken. All drawing skill levels are welcome

Monday, November 13, 2017

Weekday Urban Sketchers at Cast Hall

This week we will visit another hidden treasure of NYC.  Tucked away in the Mechanics and Tradesman Building on 44th St off 5th Ave is the Institute of Classical Architecture and Art that holds a fantastic collection of casts (molds or models) of famous statues and architectural elements.  The top floor room, flooded with light from the skylight and lemon yellow walls, hold the a sample of the collection and is lined with tables and chairs making sketching an easy task. Unlike our usual outdoor perches you can bring your big sketchbook and watercolors to capture the elements in the room.  You might also want to go into the lobby and hallways to sketch the stairwells, railing and stained glass in the lobby.

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TRANSPORTATION: B, D F, M to 42nd Street/ Bryant Park

Please RSVP directly to Raylie Dunkel at  Looking for us? Call/text Raylie at 201-978-6387.   We will be breaking for lunch in the room so bring something along with you.  No need for stools this week!!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

SATURDAY: USk World Sketchcrawl

At least 110 Urban Sketcher Regional Chapters, groups like ours from all over the world will be participating.  It’s a celebration - Ten Years of Urban Sketching together!

We’re going to be sketching in one of NYC’s most iconic locations - Times Square.  You are requested to upload your artwork as it’s being created using the hashtag #nycurbansketchers.  If you’re new to social media there will be people there to help.  Katie Woodward, our Manager of Social Media will be gathering our sketches and adding them to our NYC USk Instagram Account. 
Father Duffy Square

During the 24 hour sketchcrawl Katie’s International counterparts will be scanning all the sites, all over the world and uploading everyone’s drawings to one central location - the International Instagram account setup for this event: #USkGlobal24hrSketchwalk.

We’ve never tried anything like this - it should be great.

Times Square is, of course, an amazing sketching location.  It’s got everything, people, lights, buildings, ... you could sketch till your hand ached and still not capture even a fraction of what’s happening.


When:  This Saturday, November 11, 2017 starting at 12:00 PM - noon.  We will be sketching together until 4:30

WhereTimes Square.  We will meet in Duffy Square - the northern triangle located between 45th and 47th Streets, Broadway and Seventh Avenue.  It’s easily recognized by the statue of Father Duffy and the TKTS reduced-price theater red stairs and ticket booth located there.  We’ll meet behind the statue.

Philosophy:  As Urban Sketchers we are recording the changing world around us. It’s easy to forget how quickly it’s gone.  Look at the two photos of Duffy Square.  The view is the same but separated by 80 years.

Duffy Square in the 1930s

Show and Tell:  Since we’re starting later than usual and ending later than usual the Show and Tell will be shorter.  At 4:30 we’ll go to the restaurant/bar area of the Marriott Hotel where we will share our drawings, good stories and a snack, beer or wine if you're so inclined.

Advice and Sketching Strategies:
-  Definitely bring a stool or chair if you have one.
-  Definitely dress warmly, you will be happy you did.  Consider overdressing - Warmth!!!
-  Clean bathrooms and a chance to warm-up are available in the Marriott Hotel 1535 Broadway.
-  Upload your work to our Facebook Page as you complete each piece.  Be sure to include the hashtag #nycUrbanSketchers so we can find your work.

If you can’t find us
call or text Mark at 973-809-9128
There are no fees.   All drawing skill levels are welcome

Monday, November 6, 2017

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Merchant Marine Memorial

Weekday Urban Sketcher at Downtown War Memorials

In honor of Veterans Day, this week we will be visiting the many memorials to the solders, sailors, merchant marine and coast guard who have served our country through many wars over the past century. 

We will meet at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and then work our way through the Memorials  in Battery Park. Bring a stool, a cap and lunch for a full day's sketching as our tribute to the brave men and women in our armed forces.

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WWII Navy Memorial 
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Vietnam Veterans Memorial

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Eagle Statue at Navy Memorial
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Coast Guard Memorial

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Korean War Memorial


                                           55 Water Street, Manhattan


TRANSPORTATION: 1 or 5 train to South Ferry or the N, R, W to Whitehall Street. When you exit the subway you will be on the plaza in front of the Staten Island Ferry.  Facing the Ferry Terminal turn left and walk north along South Street for 2 blocks to the Vietnam Veterans Plaza.  

We will meet at the Plaza and sketch for a while then move into Battery Park to have lunch and continue sketching. The weather is supposed to be nice making this a pleasant day for perhaps our last outdoor events this year.

Please RSVP directly to Raylie Dunkel at  Looking for us? Call/text Raylie at 201-978-6387

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

SATURDAY: Sketch Bond

Sketch Bond
James Bond?  

No, ...  Bond Street

Sketch event suggested by Iris Ong
for Saturday November 4, 2017

Bond Street is 2 blocks north of Houston Street and about 2 blocks long.  An incredible amount of sketchable New York is packed into those two cobblestone streets.

As sketchers you’ll probably recognize 1-5 Bond Street near Broadway, the Robbins & Appleton Building.  This is the NoHo (North of Houston Street) location of Dick Blick.  The building itself is a prime example of the remarkable cast iron architecture that one can find throughout NoHo and up and down Broadway.

The building is both an individual New York City landmark and included within the city’s NoHo Historic District.  At street level, this building looks like many other cast-iron commercial buildings in the area, but a glance upwards reveals a striking mansard roof. Perched at the very top of the building below the central pediment is a gold clock.

24 Bond Street

24 Bond Street is the current of home of the Gene Frankel Theater.  It was also for years the home of the photographer, Robert Mapelthorpe.  Look up and you’ll see dozens of small, golden statues dancing along the wrought iron and brick. They’re a great addition to the industrial look of the rest of the area.  The statues were created and installed over several years by  Bruce Williams, an artist many people might know from Spring Studio.  Bruce is a resident of 24 Bond.


When and Where:   10 AM at Bond Street off Broadway.  We will spend the entire day on Bond which extends from Broadway, across Lafayette and ends at Bowery.  (see map below)

The closest subway stop is Broadway Lafayette stop on the B,D,F or M trains - walk two blocks north on Broadway.
-   You could also take the R or W to Prince Street, walking three blocks north.

Lunch12 Noon.  The plan is to bring or buy lunch.  We’ll eat in the streets.

Afternoon:  1:15 PM.  Continue sketching Bond.

Show and Tell:   3 PM  The social part of our day. Location to be determined.  We will share drawings, good stories and a snack, beer or wine if you're so inclined.

-  Bring a portable stool if you have one. It adds to your comfort and increases your sketching possibilities.
-  Dress in layers so you can adjust during the day.

Click to Enlarge

If you can’t find us
call or text Mark at 973-809-9128
There are no fees.   All drawing skill levels are welcome

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Weekday Urban Sketcher Draw Can-struction

Can you draw a can? 

Can you draw many cans that are "can-structred" to look like buildings, bridges, animals and comic book characters?  Take the challenge this week as we visit a once a year phenomenon called CanStruction at Brookfield Place in lower Manhattan in the World Financial Center

Can-struction is a yearly event held in more than 25 cities around the country to raise money and draw awareness about the hunger relief efforts in this country.  Teams of design professionals compete based on a yearly theme.  The exhibits are judged on design, construction and number of cans used and are on view for only two weeks before being dismantled. The food is donated to soup kitchens in the city for use in preparing Thanksgiving meals. 

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LOCATION:  Meet in the Palm Court in Brookfield Place on the lower level in front of Le District Market

TRANSPORTATION: E train to WTC, A, C to Chambers St, 2,3 to Park Place, N,R to Cortland St, 4,5 to Fulton Street.  Walk through the Oculus toward the Hudson River and into the Palm Court.

NOTE:  The posted destination for this week was November 1st at Newtown Creek. Due to a bad weather report we will be meeting indoors.  Since this event is open to the public starting on November 2nd, the date was changed. Hoping this is not an inconvenience to anyone. 

Please RSVP directly to Raylie Dunkel at  Looking for us? Call/text Raylie at 201-968-6387.

Bring a stool and lunch if you want but there are many food outlets in the building to purchase something.  

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

SATURDAY: Sketch the Queens Botanical Gardens

Queens Botanical Gardens
43-50 Main Street
Flushing NY 11354

Organized with Denise Markbreit

A Great Idea - Our Second Attempt
We got rained out last time - but the weather report says we'll have a great day

Saturday October 28th -  10 AM start time
... but join us when you can!

The Queens Botanical Garden is an oasis in a dense and bustling urban setting. It's a place where people, plants and culture coexist and are celebrated.

Owned by the City of New York and located in the Northeast corner of Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, QBG began as a five acre exhibit for the 1939 Worlds Fair and has grown to its current thirty nine acres by 1961. The Wedding Garden is almost in constant use for photo shoots and ceremonies and the large water features are innovative and sustainable.

Come and explore bee hives, woodlands, vegetable gardens, 
watch tai chi practitioners 
and glimpse the urban sprawl of Flushing 
just beyond the gates.


There is a modest admission fee - $6 / $4 seniors/students

      Ample parking at 42-80 Crommelin Ave @$6 per car.

Arrive:  10 AM.  Coming later?  Bring the phone numbers (see below)

Lunch at 12:00:  Bring lunch.

Afternoon:  Sketching the Garden

Show and Tell:  Details to be determined on site.  Opportunity to share drawings, talk and socialize.

-   Plenty of benches but a stool could be helpful.
-   Public bathrooms are clean and there is ample shade.


7 train to Flushing Main Street, Q 44SBS or Q20A or walk 8 blocks south on Main Street

LIRR Port Washington Branch to Main Street ( see above)
LIE x23

If you can’t find us
call or text Mark at 973-809-9128
or Denise at 516-263-4818  

There are no fees.   All drawing skill levels are welcome.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Weekday Urban Sketchers Visit Haunted Houses

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84 West 3rd Street
Are you ready for Halloween? Do you have your scary costume and candy corn ready for next week? To get in the mood we will visit a number of houses in Greenwich Village that are thought  to be haunted.   Once occupied by the likes of Edgar Allen Poe and Mark Twain, some of these houses have multiple ghosts that have appeared to many residents over the years.  So bring your disappearing ink and join in the fun.

Here is a link to the article with a map,  listing 13 of the most haunted houses in the city.

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Gay Street

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West 10th Street

We will be visiting 4 in the following order:

# 6  12 Gay Street, only one block long but one of the most picturesque in the city, was once a speak easy and is home to  the Gay Street Phantom

#5  14 West 10th Street is reported to have as many as 14 ghosts, giving it the title of House of Death.

#10 85 West 3rd Street, where Edgar Allen Poe wrote the Cask of Amontillado.  Supposedly he still haunts the house.

#11 84 West 3rd Street, just across the street from Poe's house was once a firehouse it is haunted by Fireman Schwartz who hung himself after learning of his wife's affair.  The building also was a speak easy and now Anderson Cooper lives there, but he isn't a ghost. 

DATE: THURSDAY October 26, 2017.


LOCATION:  We will meet at 12 Gay St and spend about one hour, then move on to 14 West 10th Street. We will break for lunch in Washington Square Park about 12:30 and then at 1:30 move to West 3rd Street.

TRANSPORTATION:  A, B, C, D, E, F, M trains to West 4th St.  Walk 3 blocks north on 6th Ave. Turn left on Waverly Place and then right on Gay St.  (see the map on the attached article)

Please RSVP directly to Raylie Dunkel at  Looking for us? Text/call Raylie at 201-979-6387.  Bring a stool and lunch or purchase it from one of the shops along the route.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

SATURDAY: Sketching the Trade

Would You Trade NYC?
The Day Dutch New Amsterdam, Became English Manhattan

The Dyckman Farmhouse

Many thanks to Leslie Sim for organizing this event

On Saturday October 21 New York City Urban Sketchers will help celebrate one of the most important events in New York’s history.  In 1667, 350 years ago, under the Treaty of Breda, the Dutch secured a worldwide monopoly on nutmeg by trading New Amsterdam (Manhattan) to the English.  The NYC sketchers will spend the day sketching at the Dyckman Farmhouse, an old Dutch Farmhouse located on Broadway, while their counterparts in Indonesia are sketching on the Spice Island.  (Yes!  There is a farm house located on Broadway in NYC!)

The Urban Sketcher chapters in both Indonesia and New York City are coordinating a joint “sketch crawl”, to commemorate this historic event.

In 17th Century, nutmeg was a valuable trading commodity due to its perceived medicinal qualities. At the time the spice island of Rhun, part of the Molucca Archipelago in the Banda Sea was the only place on earth that had nutmeg. 

There is a main road on Rhun named Manhattan Street, where Urban Sketchers Indonesia plan to sketch while the NY Chapter will be sketching at the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum in Inwood New York, the oldest remaining Dutch farmhouse on Manhattan Island.

This is the first time two of the Urban Sketchers chapters have coordinated a joint sketching event.  We are excited to be commemorating this, largely forgotten but extremely important historic event. Sketchers and art lovers are invited to participate. 

We’ve worked out a Sketch Swap with the Indonesian Urban Sketchers.  This is totally voluntary.  If you’d like to participate you’ll need to give one of your sketches to Leslie.  We’re sending the NYC sketches to Indonesia and in return we’re getting an equal number of drawings back.  There must be an equal number of drawings sent and received. Leslie will be keeping a sign-up sheet so be sure to let her know you want to participate.

Dyckman Farmhouse, 4881 Broadway, New York City

By Subway:
The A Train to Dyckman Street Subway Station
Head northeast on Broadway toward Cumming St. Destination will be on the right  (see map)

Long Island Railroad:
Because of construction please check the LIRR timetables for the weekend.

Please post your sketches using the following hashtags:

#TreatyofBredaSketchCrawl  <--- hashtag="" main="" nbsp="" p="">     









A tour will be provided of the museum when we arrive. We hope to have an historian Justin Rivers join us in the afternoon for an informal talk about the fascinating details of this event.


What:  We’re participating in an International Sketchcrawl partnering with Urban Sketchers Indonesia

WhereDyckman Farmhouse, 4881 Broadway, New York City

When:  Start time is 10 AM. We’ll be there the whole day

How:  See Travel info above and map below

Lunch:  We’ll gather together to have lunch at noon. Bring your own food or rely on the many restaurants and food stores in Inwood.

Afternoon:  1 PM - Back to sketching

Show and Tell3 PM  The social part of our day.  3:00 PM at the Inwood Bar and Grill, 4892 Broadway (b/t 207th St & 204th St) where we will share drawings, good stories and a snack, beer or wine if you're so inclined.

NOTE  -  Bring a portable stool if you have one. It adds to your comfort and increases your sketching possibilities.

click to enlarge

If you can’t find us
call or text Mark at 973-809-9128

There are no fees.   All drawing skill levels are welcome

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Weekday Urban Sketchers at Long Island City Courthouse

The Long Island City Courthouse is a beautiful Beaux Arts style building constructed in 1874 and renovated after a fire in 1904. Constructed of stone, ceramic tile, limestone and metal, it was once considered the most important building in Queens and designated a NYC landmark in 1974. It stands facing bustling Court Square and a grove of birch trees in front of the Citicorp building. 

In the morning we will sketch the courthouse and have lunch by the fountain in the front of the building. In the afternoon we will move across the street to sketch in the birch grove.
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DATETHURSDAY, October 19, 2017

TIME: 10:30 am

LOCATION:  Long Island City Courthouse, 25-10 Court Square, Long Island City, NY 11101. We will meet by the fountain in front of the courthouse.

TRANSPORTATION: 7, G, E or M trains to Court Square, Queens. If taking the 7 train from Manhattan, exit the platform at Court Square near the back of the train and continue down the escalator to the left, as if going to the G, E or M trains. Walk along two long corridors, one with a moving sidewalk, until you get to the exit for Court Square and 44th Drive. Take the escalator to the left. You will emerge from the station into the birch grove. Across Jackson Avenue is the Long Island City Courthouse.

Bring a stool if you like, although there is a lot of seating in front of the courthouse and in the birch grove. Also you can bring lunch or buy from outdoor vendors on 45th Avenue across from the courthouse.

Please RSVP to Alan Wernicke at  If you are coming late, or cannot find us, call or text Alan at 917-685-5748.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

SUNDAY: Sketch Green-Wood

Green-Wood Cemetery

     Green-Wood is 478 spectacular acres of hills, valleys, glacial ponds and paths, throughout which exists one of the largest outdoor collections of 19th- and 20th-century statuary and mausoleums. Green Wood is filled with century-and-a-half-old trees providing a peaceful oasis to visitors, as well as its more that a half million permanent residents, including Leonard Bernstein, Boss Tweed, Charles Ebbets, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Louis Comfort Tiffany, Horace Greeley, Civil War generals, baseball legends, politicians, artists, entertainers and inventors.

 A magnet for history buffs and bird watchers (home to Brooklyn’s Green Parrot population, … really!).  Green-Wood is also a Revolutionary War historic site - the Battle of Long Island was fought in 1776 across what are now its grounds. 

 Founded in 1838 Green-Wood Cemetery soon developed an international reputation for its magnificent beauty.  By 1860, Green-Wood was rivaling Niagara Falls as the country’s greatest tourist attraction.  Green-Wood’s popularity helped inspire the creation of public parks, including New York City’s Central and Prospect Parks.

Sketch by Janice Pullicino

When:  Sunday, October 15, 2017.  Meet at the front gate at 10 AM

Where: Green-Wood Cemetery, 500 25th Street and Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn We will meet just outside the main gate where we’ll start sketching.  (see map below)
Lunch: 12:00 Noon - With cooperative weather we’ll eat outdoors, meeting near the front gate. Bring your own or walk across the street to Baked In Brooklyn Bakery Store. In addition to baked goods they make sandwiches.

Photo:  Joan Tavolott 
Afternoon:  1 PM - Back sketching.

Show and Tell:  Meet at 2:30 PM for a walk to Greenwood Park, 555 7th Ave, (bet 20th and 19th Sts.)  This is a 15 minute walk to a beer garden where we will share drawings, good stories and a beer, snack or wine if you're so inclined.


By Subway:  Easily accessible by subway, the R train to Brooklyn’s, 25 St Station, walk up 1 block.  (see map)

By Car:  25 St & 5th Ave, Brooklyn - Free parking is available anywhere inside the High Gothic Victorian Main Gate  (which was created by the same people who created Trinity Church on Wall St)


-  Bring a portable stool if you have one. It adds to your comfort and increases your sketching possibilities.

Click to Enlarge

If you can’t find us
call or text Mark at 973-809-9128

There are no fees.   All drawing skill levels are welcome