Special Events

The World Wide SketchCrawl Scrawls Its Way into Houston

You've heard of a pub crawl: Friends and strangers gather at a designated bar, stay for a sip and move on to the next. By the time the day is over, you've seen a slew of bars in the city and you may even recall a few.

Have you ever heard of a sketchcrawl, though? Neither had we, so we did some digging to find out more about the upcoming World Wide SketchCrawl 32 that will take place on July 23rd. The concept behind SketchCrawl seems simple enough: a specific day designated to sitting down and sketching everything you see, then moving on to the next place for more. Unlike a pub crawl, though, you remember everything because you've put it down on paper.

The idea was conceived by Enrico Casarosa out of San Francisco in 2006, who thought it would be fun to spend the day on his own personal Sketch-o-Rama. The idea sparked interest with his friends, so he opened it up to the public. After a bit of buzz around town, Casarosa decided to turn it into a world wide event. Thanks to the internet and some viral connections, the quarterly SketchCrawl finds its home around the globe, from Lisbon to London to Brazil and wherever else in between.

Groups spend the day drawing, then upload their images to SketchCrawl.com, the online gallery. Sketching can be done on your own or with a group; the idea is to get yourself out there and put pencil to paper (or pen... your choice). Christine Fitzgerald, who has participated in most crawls here in Houston since 2010, enjoys the global factor to the event. "I love the idea of everyone around the world contributing and sharing the place that they live."

Gary Crosland has participated in past years on his own and was hoping to find a SketchCrawl Houston to hook up with this time around. "I wanted to take part with a group," Crosland tells Art Attack. "It's really very flexible."

Art doesn't always open its doors to collaboration, especially drawing or painting. Sketching with a group is one of the things that makes this day that much more enjoyable. It is this shared experience that Crosland finds attractive about the idea. "Art is so often produced in solitude, so it's nice to socialize with other artists occasionally."

If you are interested in spending your day on the sketch, a small group is scheduled to meet at Inversion coffee shop on Montrose this Saturday, July 23 at 9:30 a.m. for the 32nd SketchCrawl, and the date is already set for SketchCrawl 33 (October 15). Fitzgerald says that in the past sketchers spent a few hours sketching in one spot and then decided where to go to next, but everyone is welcome to come and go as they please. For more information, visit Sketchcrawl.com and join the Houston forum.

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Abby Koenig
Contact: Abby Koenig