Mark Grant
Watercolour Blog

The Urban Sketching Handbook: Color First, Ink Later, a art book review by Artist Mark Grant, Watercolour Mark


"The Urban Sketching Handbook: Color First, Ink Later" by Mike Yoshiaki Daikubara


"The Urban Sketching Handbook: Color First, Ink Later" is an inspiring and practical guide to urban sketching, penned by the talented artist and educator Mike Yoshiaki Daikubara. As an avid fan of urban sketching and a lover of watercolor, I was thrilled to dive into this book and explore its unique approach to capturing the essence of urban landscapes through vibrant colors.




In this handbook, Daikubara introduces a refreshing and unconventional method of urban sketching, encouraging artists to embrace color as the starting point for their sketches rather than following the traditional ink-first approach. He explains that by putting color at the forefront of the sketching process, artists can infuse their urban scenes with a sense of life, energy, and emotion from the very beginning.


Key Features:


1. Clear and Concise Instruction: Daikubara's instructions are easy to follow, making this handbook suitable for both beginners and experienced sketchers. The step-by-step demonstrations are accompanied by insightful tips that offer valuable guidance on technique and composition.


2. Emphasis on Color Harmony: One of the book's strengths lies in its focus on color harmony. Daikubara illustrates how to create a unified and vibrant color palette that elevates the visual impact of urban sketches, resulting in dynamic and captivating artworks.


3. Approachable Approach to Perspective: The book simplifies complex concepts like perspective, making it accessible for artists who may find this aspect challenging. The demonstrations showcase how to incorporate perspective effortlessly into urban scenes.


4. Inspiring Urban Scenes: Throughout the book, Daikubara presents a diverse range of urban sketches, offering inspiration from various cityscapes and architectural styles. This array of subjects motivates readers to explore their own surroundings and discover beauty in the ordinary.


5. Encouragement for Creative Exploration: "Color First, Ink Later" empowers artists to embrace experimentation and spontaneity. The book instills a sense of freedom, urging artists to let go of perfectionism and enjoy the process of urban sketching.


Personal Reflection:


As I delved into "The Urban Sketching Handbook: Color First, Ink Later," I found myself captivated by Daikubara's passion for watercolor and urban sketching. His enthusiasm shines through every page, making it a delight to follow his approach and embark on a journey of creative exploration.




"The Urban Sketching Handbook: Color First, Ink Later" by Mike Yoshiaki Daikubara is a must-have addition to any urban sketcher's bookshelf. Through this innovative and invigorating approach to urban sketching, Daikubara empowers artists to embrace the beauty of color and capture the dynamic essence of bustling cityscapes. Whether you are new to urban sketching or a seasoned artist seeking fresh perspectives, this book offers a valuable resource that inspires creativity and encourages a new way of seeing and sketching the world around us.


About My Watercolour Blog: Exploring Art, Creativity, and Watercolour Beauty

Welcome to my watercolour blog, an immersive journey that intertwines inspiration, creativity, and the enchanting allure of watercolour painting. As a prominent watercolour artist rooted in Ormskirk, I invite you to delve into my world of expertise, passion, and knowledge, catering to both art enthusiasts and budding painters.


Beginner's Corner: Diving into Watercolours

If the world of watercolours has piqued your curiosity but seemed daunting, my blog is your entryway. Mark Grant's Watercolour World offers insights, guidance, and practical tips to kick-start your watercolour journey. Learn the art of selecting optimal tools, including premium 300g cotton paper and precision brushes. Master essential techniques like washes, glazing, and wet-on-wet, guided by my regular posts.

Exploring Urban Landscapes: Unveiling the Urban Landscape

Witness urban landscapes come to life through my artistic lens. As an active member of Downtown Urban Sketchers in Liverpool City Center, I share my firsthand experiences and techniques in capturing the pulse of city life on paper. Traverse the transformation of bustling streets, iconic landmarks, and vibrant cityscapes into captivating watercolour sketches. Discover the joy of on-location sketching, infusing vibrancy into your artwork with each stroke.

Mindful Art: Finding Serenity in Watercolour

For me, watercolour transcends conventional art practice — it's a mindful and meditative practice. Immerse yourself in the therapeutic realm of watercolour artistry. This segment of the blog delves into the meditative essence of painting. Explore how my creative process fosters self-expression and introspection, grounding me in the present. Learn to infuse mindfulness into your art, forging a deeper connection with your creative expression and discovering solace in the act of creation.


Bespoke Artistry: Crafting Your Vision

Witness your visions and emotions materialize through my commissioned artworks. Be it cherished memories, beloved landscapes, or defining moments, my proficiency in pure watercolour painting breathes depth and sentiment into your ideas. Journey through the collaborative process of creating personalized pieces, and witness the alchemy that transforms your concepts into bespoke art that resonates with your heart.


Mark Grant's Watercolour World blog is an oasis for novices and seasoned artists alike, fostering an enriched artistic odyssey. Focusing on cultivating creativity, embracing urban landscapes, and intertwining mindfulness with art, my blog invites all watercolour enthusiasts into a profound, enriching experience. Join this vibrant, immersive journey and unlock the boundless potential of watercolour painting.


Mark Grant

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Tel: 07956000812