Quick sketch

Weekend Glitz | Trista Yeung 22 Jul 2016

Some 34 amateur sketchers were invited to showcase their talent and produced 58 art pieces, from sketches to watercolor paintings, which are featured in the Sketch Hong Kong Exhibition 2016.

Organized by a local group called Sketch Hong Kong, the show depicts heritage along with restaurants, markets and traditional Hong Kong dishes.

Since its establishment in 2014, the group has tried to enhance the bonding among local communities through sketching field trips and cultural tours, and tries to raise public awareness and appreciation of cultural heritage.

Sketch Hong Kong founder and co- chairman of Fine Art Asia Calvin Hui said the exhibition is not for profit and aims at engaging local communities to participate in art and cultural activities.

"The exhibition offers a lower threshold to celebrate the hidden talent in our society, while art lovers of all kinds can enjoy their work. In the past two years, we have strived to connect generations, especially the young, to capture the imagery of our city's character via the medium of sketches, highlighting the importance of our unique cultural identity."

This year, Sketch Hong Kong has taken more than 240 art enthusiasts on cultural and sketching tours to 15 sites, including Ping Shan, Peng Chau, Sai Ying Pun, Cheung Chau and Yau Ma Tei.

Anthony Choy Yat-chun, a 32-year- old office administrator, who only started drawing two years ago, recalled that he always had an interest in art, but never the courage to sketch on the street. The creative door opened when he joined a Sketch Hong Kong cultural tour in Wan Chai in 2014.

"At first, I found it quite uncomfortable when people surrounded me to peek at my work," he said "But now I see it as a channel to connect people. One time when I was sketching the Blue House at a local cha chaan teng, and the restaurant owner told me lots of stories about it. I really felt the bonding in the neighborhood."

His artworks, the Blue House and Claypot Rice, are showcased in the exhibition. The former work was drawn only by ballpoint pen, but the details are intricate.

"I learned ballpoint pen drawing through the internet and YouTube. I like the idea that I can draw anywhere and anytime once I have a pen in my hand. Sometimes I add watercolor into my work to enhance the characteristics," he said.

For former electrical engineer Yip Suen-fat, who is in his 70s, sketching is the perfect hobby for him. He retired in 2008.

"I like to walk around Hong Kong and sketch historical buildings like Man Mo Temple, Ping Shan Heritage Trail and the Yau Ma Tei fruit market once or twice a week. I never had this leisure when I was working, but now I can finally enjoy these things," Yip said.

He also works as a volunteer at Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital, where he teaches patients to paint in watercolors every week.

"I believe that art can help heal patients by easing their minds and reducing their pain. When you are drawing, you can be immersed completely into your work. It doesn't matter if you draw very well or not, it helps you to stay calm and peaceful."

The exhibition is on until July 30 at the 3812 gallery.

Sketches will be offered at HK$380, or HK$580 framed. The money goes to the Hong Kong Society for Education in Art, a 24-year-old charity that promotes creativity and art education among youngsters.

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