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The Seattle Sketcher

An illustrated journal of life in the Puget Sound region by Times artist Gabriel Campanario.

August 13, 2012 at 1:31 PM

What if someone could change your path?

jailsketch632.jpg
Sketched Aug. 7, 2012
I have a personal connection of sorts to today’s front page story about the If Project. (By asking inmates what could have changed their path into crime, local police officer Kim Bogucki is empowering women offenders to share their stories, and those stories can help steer troubled youth away from the same path.)
Last week, I visited the jail where these women are incarcerated, the Washington Corrections Center for Women in Gig Harbor. I led a sketching workshop there and met some of the women featured in the article written by Times reporter Nancy Bartley.
About 30 inmates took the workshop and we shared a lot of laughs during the drawing exercises, which included blind-contour portraits — drawing each other without looking at the paper — and sketching with their non-dominant hand.
When the two-and-a-half hour session ended, everyone seemed very energized and inspired by the experience. I sure was. Some of the women asked me to draw their portraits and my only regret is running out of time to do more drawings.
jailworkshop 632.jpg
The workshop was an initiative of the Seattle Urban Sketchers, my dear team of local artists who meet to sketch once a month. Our own sketcher Jacqueline Helfgott, Chair of the Criminal Justice Department at Seattle University, worked with If Project founder Kim Bogucki to make the visit possible.
To see more images from the workshop, visit the Seattle Urban Sketchers blog.
To learn more about the If Project, visit their website and Facebook page.

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