by Brenda Murray
Urban sketcher and artist, Omar Jaramillo, talks about his work and travels as the staff Creative Artist on board a large cruise liner.
Originally from Ecuador, Omar Jaramillo had made Berlin his home town for several years up until the day he packed his portmanteau and headed off for a life of adventure on board a massive cruise ship in the Mediterranean.
Omar was hired as the staff Creative Artist teaching art classes to some of the thousands of guests on board ship. During his first stint he cruised around the Mediterranean and the Canary Islands but his second contract has taken him to the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.
His ports of call are Barbados, St Lucia, Martinique, Dominica, Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, the Dominican Republic, Grenada and Antigua.
He teaches drawing, painting in acrylic + watercolor, and crafts. The class size is typically 6-12. He also has staff duties, must be trained for emergencies, and has a lot of paperwork to do he says. There are no days off, there is only free time. That takes a little getting used to but the obvious perks are wintering in the Caribbean and having a lot of fun! In his free time, he likes to head to the beach.
Omar speaks Spanish, German and English fluently and is a talented artist and urban sketcher. In fact, for many years he served as the Sponsorship Director of Urban Sketchers, a nonprofit organization that supports on location drawing.
Even though he is surrounded by the beautiful landscapes of the Caribbean, he finds life on board ship more interesting. He enjoys drawing the people on board.
"It's a huge cruise ship with around 3000 guests and 1000 crew. It's like a small town!" Omar says.
Omar shares a cabin with another staff member, he has access to all the ship's amenities and anything he consumes on board he gets for half price.
"I have no expenses! " he says.
You can see Omar's sketches and pix on his Instagram @omar_paint.