Shanghai-based artist and avid traveler Zhifang Shi captures the world around him in a series of vibrant watercolor sketch paintings. From the narrow alleys of Shanghai’s old town to the ancient storefronts of South Korea, each piece captures the authentic charm of the places he visits.
Urban watercolor sketching is a popular art form among many traveling creatives, and Shi has perfected the skill. Rendered in a distinctively loose style and working quickly to capture fleeting moments, Shi uses black pen to sketch out outlines and details before adding washes of delicate color. Each scene features perfect light and shadow, bringing the talented artist’s street corner sketches and architectural studies to life.
Urban scenes glow with rows of lanterns, while shop fronts and houses are depicted with potted plants, old shutters, and clothes lines. Shi immortalizes each historical neighborhood in flourishes of ink, many of which may not be around for much longer—in fact, one particular piece is titled The house that is going to disappear.