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#OneWeek100People2017: Day Three: Hip Hop Dance at Studio Diss Tortion

March 8, 2017

One of my goals surrounding reportage sketching (as a past-time) is never draw the same thing twice.

I figure that’s got to be the best way to keep on learning. Both about drawing, and about how to use my sketching to engage with the world.

> Ed Note: You can read the rest of this series of posts HERE <

So, I found my almost 50 year old self, feeling very much out of place, at a late night Hip Hop Dance workshop put on by Studio Diss Torsion.

This event was a small part of our Nuit Blanche or “Sleepless Night”. A French invention in which a city puts on an all night arts festival.

Here in Montreal, it’s a mix of street fair, public performance, and contemporary art. There’s an emphasis on giant out-door projection art and robotic light shows. Our downtown Place des Arts district is full of small stages; this year there was a zipline running over the square. All the galleries and theaters are open, and the underground city (our metro-level shopping mall) is host to the Art Souterrain festival.

But if you’re looking for a chance to sketch people in motion, a classroom is a perfect situation.

The instructors know they’re on display, so it doesn’t seem as weird to have someone ‘taking notes’. Plus most of these groups live by word of mouth – so they’re likely to be open to a visit from a group of online sketchers.

But mainly, they tend to be doing something over and over while the students imitate. Giving you a chance to develop a sketch from gesture through repeated passes of refinement, each time you see your pose come back around.

There was a lot more going on out there at Nuit Blanche. I did stop for a few moments when I spotted these anachronistic Habitant Fire Jugglers.

This is so typical of Montreal. Hipster History!

But sadly it was too dammed cold to go any further with these. I will say, when it’s absolutely freezing – just a pencil works better than a frozen fountain pen.

So just imagine these guys juggling flaming torches and spinning double-ended fire sticks to the accompaniment of rollicking fiddle music.

I only kid because I love. It’s awesome the way Montréalais look for any excuse to do something in historical costume! I’ve got no problem with sketching that :)

16 Comments leave one →
  1. March 8, 2017 9:38 AM

    I just want to say – I love your work!  I did a few people yesterday because you inspired me!  Are you ever in the NYC area for workshops?  I live in NJ about 1 hour away.   Keep those people coming!

  2. March 8, 2017 9:43 AM

    Wow! fantastic. would love to have been at the event too.

  3. March 8, 2017 10:06 AM

    Nice work!

  4. Sharon permalink
    March 8, 2017 10:51 AM

    I really admire your capture of movement. The Hip Hop Dance drawings with watercolor are exceptional—so dynamic! I am working on the 100 People in 5 Days Project, but I’ve scaled it back a bit to a more manageable 50, because I am a beginning sketcher.

  5. March 8, 2017 11:00 AM

    You really captured the movement!

  6. March 8, 2017 11:03 AM

    Love the movement and fluidity in these drawings – really stunning!

  7. March 8, 2017 11:09 AM

    Geez…this sure beats sketching in coffee shops and libraries! Bravo! Thanks for pushing the bounds!

  8. March 8, 2017 11:18 AM

    I love how you’ve captured the movement of the dancers x

  9. March 8, 2017 5:26 PM

    Fantastic! You’ve really captured the movements of the dancers so well! Very inspiring!

  10. Paula permalink
    March 8, 2017 6:24 PM

    What wonderful energy in your drawings! (And you know how to draw feet and shoes!)

  11. March 9, 2017 1:16 AM

    Hi Marc

    Just a quick note to let you know that I really enjoy following your blog and glad that I stumbled across it a few months back. I also got your ebook and slowly working my way through it, so far so good!

    I hope you don’t mind. Can I ask you a question with regards to your blog email format? Do you use a plugin to get that formatting?

    I am a hair and make-up artist and plan to start blogging more regularly and would like my emails to look better. I have JetPack installed but that is extremely basic. Looking at various newsletter emails but all I want is my blog/emails to look better!

    Cheers vc


    • March 9, 2017 10:31 AM

      I just use the most basic The ‘free hosting’ with no installs. (Though it’s not free, I pay a annual fees for no-ads and extra storage). You can choose templates for the look. This page is using Vigilance. It’s not perfect – but it’s good enough for zero maintenance! If you want an idea of how different vanilla wordpress can be, check out my figure drawing blog (NSFW) with a completely different theme:

      • March 11, 2017 8:21 PM

        Thanks Marc – I’ve moved my site from and might explain why I don’t have access to the templates as I’m looking in the wrong place! Will have a look around. Also, will also be having a good look at your figure drawing, beautiful work! I started doing life drawing at the end of last year – so very new to it. :-)


  1. #OneWeek100People2017: Day Three: Hip Hop Dance at Studio Diss Tortion | O LADO ESCURO DA LUA
  2. Announcing: #OneWeek100People2018 starts Monday March 5! | Citizen Sketcher
  3. SIĘ DZIEJE 3/2018 – się rysuje

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