Viewing 108 reply threads
    • Bird Academy
      Bird Academy
      Bird_Academy
      1. One of the challenges in field sketching is organizing your materials in the field. How are you managing your materials? Any tips to share? 2. Share how you think you are integrating your new drawing and watercolor skills with your science practices such as recording observations, asking questions, and identifying themes. As always, feel free to share a sample journal page! 3. Share one of your journal pages and let's see if other students can identify some of the drawing or painting techniques you used. Comment on those you recognize in other students' work as well.
      You must be enrolled in the course to reply to this topic.
    • Chris
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      HeartBirds
      yesterday I drew & painted my Northern Flicker from a photo I took a few days ago. I enjoyed using some purple wash for shadowing on the bird’s chest. I realized how right Liz was about getting the bird’s eye right. I found the wrong location or size of the eye really detracts from a drawing so it was worth erasing & trying several times. 33968436-2565-4A6A-A4FE-4A32FF4C9044DB2497D8-5F9B-458B-B986-3B6D842FAB40
    • Chris
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      HeartBirds
      I tried to recreate a sunrise landscape of Mt. Rainier I took yesterday. Crows often join me.  I included 2 more crow poses from other photos in the sequence. The photo scene generated a lot of energy I tried to capture. I’m overall happy with the composition, colors & remembering to add a blue wash at the end.  I’m becoming more comfortable using a water brush.  I can take my little journal, tiny paint kit & what I need anywhere I go meaning I can’t wait to take them backpacking. This class has taught me so much about painting & drawing, especially birds.   D12E5402-3C0C-4469-BE08-A3097120DB794A2327AD-376B-4B7D-85C9-799CC95997DA
    • Patricia
      Participant
      Chirps: 18
      patofvta
      Great Tail GrackleI am challenged when I go into the field to sketch and paint.  I over pack just in case I want other equipment.  I have a small field kit for just painting, but, I have a bag with all the possible equipment I may want depending on how far I will be walking to get to the location.  if I can paint from the car, I have a chair, I usually like to have my camera, cell phone, binoculars, water, and snacks, in addition my sketch pad and paints.  I usually make the choice between my painting/sketching or photography and birding.  It takes effort to focus on a composition in the field, but I do like making notes.  My journaling will most likely be worked as a memory project where I will develop a theme and use a combination of all the material I have done on site.  I have attached 2 paintings using my photographs and 1 of a landscape on site. Pat20201005_SB SeascapePacific Loon final
    • Pat
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      Issaquah
      20201119_120714 (1)
    • Pat
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      Pat.Martin
      journal beginning Red headjournal redhead wood          I started using a light wash of pink that I thought I would overpaint with swashes of darker color to get highlights on head.  Same as back of bird only I used a teal.  I kept darkening the teal as the light wash didn't work.  I couldn't manage to get the effect I wanted so I started using thin brushstrokes (feathers) in dark red and black.  It seemed to work but it was not what I wanted.  I also went back over the head with white thin strokes for highlights.  Again, not what I had hoped to do.
    • Beverly
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      BeverlyEvans
      My landscape was from the middle of the lake.  I took a picture and painted it later.  I am not sure what caused all the circles but am guessing it was water on the camera lens.  Again I am still struggling with the water colors.  I left the white white but needed a few white highlights and could not get them.Scan_0008
    • Jean
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      jigoe2
      Went to Balboa Park and sketched the Cabrillo Bridge with the San Diego Tower.  Clouds in the sky, 70*, Light breeze.  I carry my supplies in a back pack in a ziplock bag.  I usually have a heavy sheet of plastic to sit on if there isn't a bench or other perch. This was fun to do.  Took a little over an hour to do.   IMG_5839 (1)
    • Beverly
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      BeverlyEvans
      Managing my materials is no problem.  While my husband fishes I sit and sketch so I have a bag ready to go at the drop of a hat.  Now I just need to include my paints.  The sketching is going really well. I feel I have really improved.  sketch of the stellarjay turned out so good and then I started painting.  Watercolors are really frustrating me.  I cannot get the colors write and I cannot paint in the details.  I gave up after trying multiple times for detail.  I like the facial expression but the rest ...I give up.Scan_0007
    • Jean
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      jigoe2
      Painting from a photo exercise--I used layering of colors.  I found this technique useful but time consuming. Its hard to wait to get to the next color. I think you would definitely need  a photo to complete in the field journaling if you want to be detailed.  I enjoyed this exercise but don't always have the time it takes....IMG_5835 (1)
    • Janice
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      JaniceMcDll
      C4428004-2CC9-4E31-941B-547157919554
    • Isabel
      Participant
      Chirps: 30
      IsabelTroyo
      Paisaje El Silencio, Alajuela 9 set 20It is very useful to work small and leave enough space to test the colors
    • Isabel
      Participant
      Chirps: 30
      IsabelTroyo
      Silky FlycatcherThis is my practice using my own reference photo of a Long-tailed Silky Flycatcher. This is one of my first birds using only watercolor and I erase the pencil lines.  I test the colors before aplying them on the bird.
    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 17
      LinElin
      This was my watercolor practice from a reference photo. Overall I am happy with it, had problems with the beak, but the eye turned out pretty good. I am not at present able to go much beyond the backyard (gearing up for knee surgery), so haven't put together my field supplies but really appreciate all the hints and ideas. IMG-2115
    • diana
      Participant
      Chirps: 49
      ittybittyart
      DF9F4162-8C1E-481F-9EB5-5DB01802223D I’m coming back to this lesson and this work with entry(ies), but this is my attempt at building up 3D form through color and shading while using reference images. This snow bird (Arctic White Ptarmigan) seemed like an obvious choice to try to make standout through subtle shading and minimum coloring.
    • Jill
      Participant
      Chirps: 20
      JFeldkamp
      Beginning to work with color provides all new challenges plus, also, new fun. Autumn LeavesPaoli
    • Nadja
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      ndjprt
      IMG_1044 Two common German birds!
    • Kimmai
      Participant
      Chirps: 13
      KimmaiNunnery
      IMG_4092Material management, well lets just say I currently have a lot of sand in my pallet. I have a zip bag that I keep my field sketching supplies that allows me to quickly take my supplies for a bike ride or a weekend getaway. In the bag is : a jar to hold my erasers,  a brush holders that holds my brushes and pencils,and pens. The lose in my bag is some was-hie tape. Then I have a small on the go watercolor pad my husbands makes with 300lb hot press.
    • John
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      Peckalot
      This being my first landscape in color it was a task i used a complimentary colors.IMG_0160(1)
    • Jeff S.
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      jschaffe
      Blue Jay Here's my practice from a reference photo of a Blue Jay.  I like the head and neck which took a lot of layering to get right.
    • Matt
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      mgoldberg
      IMG_6526 Today I didn't have the time to go to some of my favorite observation/journaling spots. This is a Japanese maple in my back yard, and a place I love to sit. This particular tree has led me to many questions about tree structure, functions, patterns, etc.
    • Jennifer
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      Jennifer63
      Did this from  a photo I took while out hiking.   I found the thistle difficult to get the colour accurate and the spikes were challenging.    I’ve never used water colour before, I really enjoyed it.      I’m happy with how the bumble turned out.   EC82495C-6D7E-46FB-8447-3284642C710B
    • Beth
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      BDaleoArt
      I have a little backpack that fits everything and I did bring a water bottle to fill up my water brush. The paint set I have (not the recommended one...l already had a few) didn’t have white so I brought along a Lyra Aquacolor water soluable crayon in case I needed a tint.  Another brand I have is Neocolor II. It was a good solution. I also found, since I had a small place to mix paints, that using tints, tones and shades of the same colors, just adding the same blues, greens and complementary colors back in as needed, saves space. It was pretty sunny and my paints dried quickly so I could glaze over areas and the colors were related. Image of my finished landscape and the water soluable crayons (available at many art stores without having to buy a whole set. I think a watercolor pencil in white would work too.) image
    • Tanis
      Participant
      Chirps: 23
      tanislynn
      DSC02556 This is an island where my dog and I go for a run. I pack sketching pencils and paint kit in a backpack along with a camera. The things I often forget to take are a test paper and something to wipe the pen on to dry it so now I just use another page in the sketch book. Usually an hour is all the time I want to sit in one place so it helps to take photograph of the scene. When I get back home I can focus more on adding the details. Capturing the colour of the water, its movement and the sense of white water are areas that still need practise.
    • Gayle
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      GPerrine
      IMG_1471         wsGkrF5YThGoUWF8hu5WBw_thumb_6615
    • اليازية
      Participant
      Chirps: 27
      Alyazia
      IMG_6976 I posted before an attempt to paint a watercolour piece - BUT I spit water one it by mistake ! I didn't want to move forward without posting something here that I'm well satisfied with. So, I followed the video. I lost control while using the water several times (I don't know why I lose it alway while brushing the right side!) The original plan was to paint the background, however, I forgot that and went straight forward to the bird. Didn't want to take the rest and ruin this piece too. I lost the side fruits as well >.>
    • Stefania
      Participant
      Chirps: 19
      Stefiex22
      1. I create a special place for all my materials so it is easier for me to find them and start sketching. I set a place that it is easier to remember so I can find it immediately. 2. I have learnt that I tend to move forward from the focus and create something different with various colors as you can see from my pictures. IMG_20200706_213655IMG_20200706_213646IMG_20200706_211324 Observations are really good, I enjoy hearing the sound of the water, I observe flowers and try to observe them deeply and longer. I do enjoy watercolor very much. I struggle with animals and birds. I truly dislike to draw them, I love drawing trees, and I enjoy watching the different types of trees.
    • اليازية
      Participant
      Chirps: 27
      Alyazia
      While Painting
      • The first thing I noticed when comparing my “outdoor sketch” with the photograph is that the horizon line was not right.  I corrected my sketch and planned my painting layers ahead before mixing the colours.
      53BB6D02-C232-41A6-ABDE-E0EAE4AB3FE8
      • My goal was not the sketch nor the scientific knowledge built from the observation, instead, I was focussing on experimenting with the watercolours and the brushes. I planned four layers: -1- the background; wash the sheet with the required colours and waited till it dried. -2- used dry brush for some parts and add some bright colours for the details. (Then I stopped! I just stopped and I don’t really know why!) Here were the incomplete sketch waited for me:
      B7389FB3-C64C-4568-9A11-663377D01187
      • The following was the “planned layers” -3- apply the glazing technique for the background and a hint of glazing for the foreground. -4- finally add the details lining and texture.
      • HERE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP FROM THIS EXPERIENCE   Never move your sketchbook/sheet colours and change your location WHILE painting — a simple thing might happen:
      B186655F-CB46-40F1-8785-967329FCDCA8  
      • I full cup of water poured over the painting — I didn’t noticed that until I went back to continue the work. P.S. the water was from the brushes container not a regular cup , I totally forgot to empty it >.<
      • now I don’t feel like finishing it — I’ll have to have a better mood or maybe I’ll go back to sketching then I’ll get back to the watercolours (I really really really wanted to finish this piece - it was going to be my first completed watercolour piece)
      By the way, I have to say that I couldn’t use my notebook for the watercolours .. the water ruined its pages, thats why I used single watercolours sheets. (another tip!)
    • اليازية
      Participant
      Chirps: 27
      Alyazia
      I’ll divide my reply to this discussion into two. First: before painting. Second: while painting. Before painting I went to paint a still-life outdoor, just before the sunset. Although I had all my watercolour set with me, the humidity was high - what I’ve done was to get  a quick sketch of what I see. Tried to write a colour code (to paint it indoor) but I thought it won’t be good enough so I took photographs after finishing the sketch. I made sure to have colours of the sky as well as the details. So, I took several shots: 5D4BC0AD-410A-41FD-B15C-1466E0E2042027D70BF5-4B82-4EC8-8121-9A340CDFBEFA When I went back inside to paint, I felt I need to create a reference sheet. I sticked with the basic colours only (I know I have ready colours but mixing colours has a much deeper feelings which I liked). The reference sheet was done - and just before that I lost my motive to paint, therefore, I left the sketch for the next morning. 63D2CA46-9E3A-43A6-A9A9-067A5BF2CF88
    • Colleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 43
      CBMac7
      3851E80E-0D76-46E1-9520-13194909B0BD  1. I keep my supplies (Sketch Box of Colors, Pencils, Pens, Erasers, Paper Towels, Water Brushes, & a variety of Binder Clips) in a quart size Ziplock Bag or an old small tub with my Sketchbooks. That wayI can easily grab them to put in my purse, backpack, or whatever I’m using to travel with. I use the Binder Clips to hold down pages in the book, paper on my clipboard or to hold my sketch box of colors to my clipboard. 2. After learning these drawing and watercolor techniques, I’m finding I can now add more detailed data to my science practices and experiences. It gives a deeper understanding of knowledge gained and found in my observations.
    • Sharon
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      DixieDot
      This is my first try at a landscape in the field.  I was actually so focused on trying to paint the landscape, keep all my materials handy, mix colors, and keep the flies and sweatbees off me that I forgot to make any other observations.  I really need to work on that.  I also realize that I should pick a focus area because there can be a lot to look at in a landscape.  I do like the wet on wet technique because it gives such a loose feel to the painting.IMG_0089
    • This is a sketch from a photo that my husband took. The momma deer had just given birth to her fawn hours before we came across them in the early morning. 86BDAB34-AC6A-43E1-9CAE-D1EC32FDBB54
    • Sharon
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      DixieDot
      This was a fun project, and although I see some areas that could have been better, I am happy overall with my first attempt at watercolor from a photo.  I chose a great blue heron because they have been at the lakes on the conservation area I have been visiting lately.  They are quite interesting to watch.  Their beak is like a dagger.  Anyway, here is my painting, and, as you can see, I smudged the eye and dragged the color through an area I wanted to be white.  I tried to add water to lighten it, but didn't want to mess up the paper there.IMG_0082
    • Les
      Participant
      Chirps: 12
      Lesbrandt
      Went for a walk this morning. Thinking of sketching, but maybe not, it was super bright and getting hot. Came to this Datura, which I have always walked past because it is too complicated to try.  So I did walk past, but I came back, encouraged by what I have learned and by what you all do. Unfolded my little three legged stool and sat down, determined to show one of the hundred blossoms on the five foot wide plant.  My goal was to paint what I saw, not what I thought as normally happens and which usually ends in frustration. Because of a few trips outside to sketch I am slowly learning what I think I need, and I am filling the many pockets of a birding/artist style vest. After I drew with pen and ink I started coloring with the goal of showing the white blossom and stages of the plant.  While it is far from perfect, I did accomplish some of the things I hoped for.  Thanks for looking, and we can do this. IMG_0862
    • becky
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      bmeldorf
      DDDFA8C7-6072-4692-BC70-2EF8A11AC14AFor my first attempt at watercolor I think I did ok.  I still have trouble with proportion and I’m too impatient, so some of the paper got a little overworked. I really enjoy the courses they are a challenge.  Everyone is very supportive so that also adds to the pleasure.
      • Sharon
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        DixieDot
        This is amazing.  I love the brightness of your cardinal and the contrasting colors.  Also, your tree branch looks so real--I can "feel" the texture just by looking at it!
      • This is excellent and very professional looking! I also love the colour blending of the Cardinal and the life-like texture of your branch. Well done!
    • 4D7D4328-D399-4B4A-BC67-B2FC1365A28A
    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      Lindabeekeeper
      I keep my materials all together in a bag as well.  I have only begun painting outside and I think I need  a few weights to keep things from blowing away.cedar waxwings
    • Cheryl
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      CPagel49
      IMG_2575 This was fun and I learned much from it.  I have a century plant blooming in my yard.  The stalk is higher than my house and loaded with buds. Every morning a Gila Woodpecker comes and announces his presence with a sqawk.  Until the desert heat hit, I love sitting and waiting for his arrival.  I think my biggest takeaway from this is to really make sure the paint is dry before adding another layer.  It also showed me how tough it is to know how dry or wet to get my brush.  I think I need to play with the paint more to get a feel of that.  Thanks for all the good demos and teaching
    • Kirsten
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      kirstenlissa
      For question #1: I have a separate little drawstring bag I keep my field journal and watercolors in so I can throw it in my purse or backpack when I want to do some nature journaling. Having everything in one smaller pouch makes a big difference for me to keep things clean and organized. For question #2: I love having a smaller pair of birding binoculars handy when nature journaling. For #3: I’m sharing a few of the wildflower watercolors I’ve done recently to capture some of the more unique flowers that grow in Texas. D19CD6BA-ED07-4431-92E0-14EF1B701B80DEB8CC74-0C35-493B-AA61-446880F5356C29B9CBF3-B199-4975-BFD7-DD5C17BABDE6
      • Nancy
        Participant
        Chirps: 11
        nstevick
        I love your beautiful botanical illustrations. They are so detailed and delicate. How do you create those fine lines so consistently? Do you use the brush recommended, or do you have a finer tip brush. I have not had success trying this leven of fine detail and would love to know your secret!
    • adriana
      Participant
      Chirps: 13
      adrisnchz
      IMG_3734
    • linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      lindaabird
      image
    • Kathy B.
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      KBelletireArt
      Liz makes painting outdoors look so simple! I had my first experience painting in my garden, perched on a stool, balancing my pallet between journal pages; clutching a folded paper towel and trying not to drop my water brush or drip paint on my leg. My first obstacle was finding a location where I wasn't looking at the bright whiteness of sun or dancing tree shadows on the page, and still had an uninterrupted view of my subject and was out of the wind and drifts of white pine pollen.  I did manage a half hour outside getting the basics of my "St Francis " garden, before a rumble of thunder chased me indoor to finish. The result looks like I forgot most every technique Liz taught us while her words ring in my head; "Art is a skill--whatever you put into it is what you'll get out of it--the only reason I'm good at drawing (and painting) is I do it every day."  I'll keep at it until painting outdoors becomes a breeze!  Kathy B.St. Francis -painted outside -KBelletire 5-28-20
      • Jane
        Participant
        Chirps: 15
        jirwinromo
        I had to laugh at your description but I like the result!
    • Giuliana
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      giulianacpferrari
      I haven't taken them yet to the field, because you know... the whole situation right now. But I got really happy with the results on putting all the skills together to draw animals. I mostly used wet on dry, given the paper I'm using is not as sturdy as I would like to hold lots of water. I wished Liz would go a bit more in detail on good paper to use for different sorts of works, since I know paper in watercolours is even more important than the paints. On and all I really appreciated this module and I'm only sad that the course is ending! WhatsApp Image 2020-05-23 at 11.03.26
    • Montana
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      mvasquezgrinnell
      I found that the water brushes don't work for me but regular water color brushes. I loved painting this and it's by far my best watercolor painting...ever. Putting it all together worked well. image0
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 19
      Nancr
      I have been working with the water colors trying to create depth with just the color, instead of the pencil.  I came across this delightful photograph and I just had to draw it and color it.   Inkedbirds on a branch_LI
    • Terri
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      lemonhorse231
      Liz - I want to thank you for these lessons in watercolor.  I haven't started working on them yet, but I've learned so much in the past few days of watching how to blend colors, doing palettes and watching the start to finish video.  I took a watercolor course a long time ago and gave up on it because there was very little instruction and I felt like I was really out of my element.  Since that time I've always felt that I was color challenged and wouldn't be able to do watercolor.  After watching these videos, I feel that I may just be able to do this!  Your instruction is very, very helpful!  Thanks for giving me a boost into watercolor!
    • sondra
      Participant
      Chirps: 17
      sondralynne
      7E276FC1-603B-45D4-A9F3-BE140461296F
    • sondra
      Participant
      Chirps: 17
      sondralynne
      5A7D7F90-6267-4C8E-940B-9B8330FC2E29L
    • Jane
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      jirwinromo
      Advantage of a rainy day - I decided to attempt to use the metallic/florescent watercolors that I received when I first ordered to see what I could do. Others have mentioned they also got this pallet by mistake - it doesn’t contain a black or any flat color. Our only local hummingbird is the ruby throated, and it has iridescent colors, so that was my pick. This was from a photo in Stokes Field Guide - I found I could add some darkness with my pencil which I wouldn’t have tried if I’d had the regular color palette. So a good experiment.403EC678-CF45-4800-BDF6-BF1EAAAAC3FF
      • adriana
        Participant
        Chirps: 13
        adrisnchz
        Really good! Its beautiful and you did an awesome job using the pencil to make it darker
    • Jane
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      jirwinromo
      It’s been pouring rain the last couple of days so no outdoor fun. I went back to one of my earlier journal entries to fill in a picture of the Caspian Tern - we see a lot of them flying up and down the Lake Michigan shore, and I’d seen several that day. My journal is more wordy, lots of text, little room for pictures, but filled this in trying to use some of the new water color techniques I have been learning. I’ve got to work on the wash technique. I needed to keep a lot of white for the tern. Adding the blue sky after the fact was tricky and it’s uneven. I also used a reference pic from Stokes Field Guide. Definitely need to practice watching the real thing!8FB19B43-AD44-42D0-B62A-ED14E34B11F0
    • Kelly
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      kballantyne
      9BE49E2D-D105-4737-8AFE-40B1D1B54753 I haven’t taken my kit outdoors yet because it’s peak migration season here and I’m moving around too much.  But I did make this journal page from a reference photo I took in the field.
      • sondra
        Participant
        Chirps: 17
        sondralynne
        This is so nice. Great detail.
      • Géry
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        Whimbrel1961
        Oh! You are very lucky to see that rare and endangered wood warbler species that breeds in old-growth hardwood forests! Beautifull sketch too!
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 19
      Nancr
      And another.   Kingfisher in color
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 19
      Nancr
      Here is another.   Red Breasted Nuthatch in color
      • sondra
        Participant
        Chirps: 17
        sondralynne
        Your drawings/paintings are so nice. Great observations.
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 19
      Nancr
      I finally got brave enough to try color on my drawings, actually copies of my drawings, copies onto watercolor paper.  I am not totally pleased with them but here they are and I would like suggestions from any  other students. House Finch in color
    • Leah
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      lbaker90
      CWWReferenceR2 Still working on figuring out the techniques to get the right depth and natural textures. Seems like I need to work on the consistency (pigment to water ratio). Appreciate any tips!
    • Cristina
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      Cristyal
      Just as you say, the first one won't be the best one, but I have followed you during the video and this is the result: IMG_20200504_171639524     Also, I went out and took notes on how this flower dry's up, it was pretty exciting putting what we have learn into practice IMG_20200504_172104113
    • Jenny
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      JennyChapman
      I can’t get over how great this color set is, how portable , and how neat the water pen/brushes are!  I’m struggling to get the detail, but it’s super fun- something I look forward to, yes, the calming and focused joy of art, what a wonderful course ! Thank you!D436204D-B1F0-44F6-8994-86F6C5F77542  
    • Student Birder
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      trudy10024
      I finally got around to drawing the cedar waxwing with berries. It was a challenge to get the subtlety of the colors and forms of this beautiful bird.  Trudy Here is my attempt: Cedar Waxwing and Berry
    • Rose
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      RoseLouise
      first watercolor attempt ever- lilac breasted roller- one of my favorite birds.  Really enjoyed this- I have learned so much from this outstanding course   DD0B7923-4247-41F1-9C0A-5B0A28BD151C
    • amy
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      ajgwinters
      347103E5-6A54-4D5B-A661-FE7B82A6EC17kind of amazed how successful I’m feeling with this course!!! I *see* much better, and I depict what I’m seeing a fair bit better. Good lessons and exercises.
    • Mudito
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      Mudito
      I am finished the course now and loved it.  I learned a lot and feel much more comfortable with watercolour now.  Even drawing these little bitty birds and flowers.  I feel the look of my journal is emerging.  I am heavy on the images, poetry and commentary, pretty lax on the scientific stuff. Keeping track off all the tools and equipment is a challenge for me.  Nearly every sit spot claims a pencil, eraser or a pen cap, some of which I do find at a later time.  I spend a lot of time close to home as I love my comfy folding chair but it is very awkward to carry.  So my garden and my bird feeder are the focus of my pages.  In this time of Covid 19 I am staying home a lot, most of the time in fact.  This course has greatly helped me to fill my days and to get me outdoors to do it. I continue to draw from photos but do practice the gesture drawing from time to time and it gives me ideas if not particularly good drawing that I work on to the finish.  Hope to see that improve over the summer. Forgot to take a picture of the very first bird but there is considerable improvement over the time of the course. So thanks to Liz for her really great classes.  It was especially helpful for me to see her actually doing the drawing and painting. image
      • Jenny
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        JennyChapman
        What a beautiful page!  You really captured the white crowned, did you do your drawing from your observations at your feeder?  If so, amazing and bravo!  If from a photo, bravo too
    • Amy
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      Pamfooh2
      I know I have improved.  Painting from a photo taken in the field seems to be the easiest option for me now.  Too cold and snowy right now to find a warm sit spot.  This fox surprised us on the golf course.  Its not as good as I'd like - practice practice practice!  But better than I ever could have done several months ago.  IMG_2976 3
    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      LindaClark
      IMG_2880IMG_2879 It was much easier painting from a picture than in nature.  I noticed that the shadows changed before I was finished, I tried to use all of the techniques learned to date on these drawings.
    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      LindaClark
      IMG_2862 Oriole I saw in my yard, found a picture in one of my bird books to sketch, then watercolor.  I tried to use most of the ideas that have been shared.  how to get proper proportion, color matching, and trying to pay more attention to detail and the eye.
    • Allison
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      irmoteach
      It is definitely going to take practice to learn to control the watercolors. This is a brown headed nuthatch I copied from the Merlin photo. Not too bad for my first solo attempt. 202B7851-1191-4DF6-9F59-570C02AD211A
      • Jenny
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        JennyChapman
        It’s wonderful and the eye is perfect, looks alive!
    • Leah
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      imchickadee
      Sketching and painting the Steller's Jay that I was drawing took a long time, though I thought it wouldn't take as much time as it actually did. Though this was a really fun experience, and I would love to keep on doing this!
    • S
      Participant
      Chirps: 32
      twistybear
      Working from a photo.  My niece's cat Caspi.91923018_1053403388393992_8215855357268852736_n
      • Cristina
        Participant
        Chirps: 5
        Cristyal
        This is amazing
      • Tanis
        Participant
        Chirps: 23
        tanislynn
        This is amazing, especially the way you have captured the fur. How did you achieve the colour for its pads?
    • David
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      David Santos
      My sketches took me a lot more time then I was expecting. I was forced to draw and paint from photo, but I did both in my backyard without furniture. I sat on the floor so I can experience doing this in an unconfortable position. I noticed something i wasn't expecting: in the Northern Shoveler the speculum is more visible in the reflection than in the actual bird. I never notice that before. I'm used to ID directly from the bird but maybe I can search for "clues" or field marks elsewhere, like reflections.92052378_245506916488342_4606270502753796096_n92243853_637936526771077_4085894365409443840_n
    • Denise
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      dchaffner
      For a few years I have tried to photograph the tree swallows with no success. But today was different. While weeding quietly I noticed these birds accepted me and put on a show. They fed their young in the nesting boxes. They chattered with each other. I love the way they fly - just swoop on buy. I only see them in the Spring and the Fall. They are never at my bird feeders. I discovered later they are insect feeders. But what I love most about them is their color. Their dorsal side is this iridescent blue green color, while their belly is a vivid white. Sometimes when they sit on the fence they remind me of mini penguins because of their color contrast. This was a perfect Spring day in E. TN. Temps were in the 60’s with a slight breeze blowing.image
    • Penny
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      PanamaPen
      IMG_20200405_134525311 IMG_20200405_134553878I have been taking advantage of beautiful weather here in Boquete to spend time in the garden and observe the many birds and flowers.  The woodpecker is a rare sight and the pink ginger is changing everyday as the flowers open and put out new blossoms.  This course has been helpful in raising my awareness of how quickly even the flowers change from day to day.
    • James
      Participant
      Chirps: 13
      Jim Fuehrmeyer
      It's still too chilly here in Northern Indiana to go sit out back and sketch, so I've been working on copying some of my birding photos. I'm pretty encouraged given I hadn't drawn anything since about the 5th grade - close to 60 years ago. The hardest thing for me is mixing colors. I suspect it will be even more difficult once I head outside. IMG_2608IMG_1405
      • S
        Participant
        Chirps: 32
        twistybear
        Lovely
    • Ashlynn
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      ashlynn03
      20200401_202852I'm am very happy and suprised with the way this turned out! I think I found my niche!
      • Student Birder
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        trudy10024
        This came out so well.  You definitely found your niche.  --T
      • S
        Participant
        Chirps: 32
        twistybear
        Very sweet.
    • Patricia
      Participant
      Chirps: 23
      whipporwheel
      1AFD39B4-F228-4052-B31C-AECCA051BBF3I’m using a quart-sized Ziplock bag to hold my tiny Winsor and Newton watercolor travel palette.  I’m using a 6B pencil, water brush, and 130 lb watercolor paper cut to size to fit in my Nature Journal.  All of this fits in my quart bag, which I carry in a daypack when I’m out in the woods. I’m really happy with what I’ve learned from this course about gesture drawing and color mixing.
      • Student Birder
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        trudy10024
        This is great.  It makes me feel peaceful and happy.  Thanks for explaining how you set up your supplies.  I usually use an HB or H pencil for initial drawing but I may try the 6B.  It is softer and darker, I think.  I am so happy with this course and hope there will be a second version or I may just do the whole thing again.  I have learned a lot from our terrific teacher, and it is inspiring to look at other people's work too.  --Trudy
      • S
        Participant
        Chirps: 32
        twistybear
        Really nic.
    • BJORN
      Participant
      Chirps: 40
      suzukiawd13
      IMG_20200329_183933~6 A Vulture/Condor. Reference photo and interpretation. Some mixed medium, to finish the outlines at the end of the sketch. Fine Markers, almost all W.Colors.
      • Student Birder
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        trudy10024
        This vulture/condor is great.  So expressive and kind of haunting.  I like the way it fills the left side of the page but leaves the negative space and opening for what looks like the sky.  Very interesting composition.  -- Trudy
      • BJORN
        Participant
        Chirps: 40
        suzukiawd13

        @Student Birder Thanks, I usually use pencils, and am starting to get into water colors. The colors pop more, and leave more 3-d. -bk

    • Toni
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      tonilp
      8F52B832-8289-46CC-9349-81FDB05DE97EBelted kingfisher from a reference photo. I feel like I know so much more about this bird from having spent so much time studying every detail and proportion in the photo. I love the way it is so totally absorbing. One problem with doing this in my journal was not being able to go onto another page while it was drying as I wanted to have more than one drawing/painting going at a time. Any ideas how to handle this? I guess I could have more than one journal!
    • Student Birder
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      trudy10024
      Mountain Lake scanThis is my watercolor of Mountain Lake, a small lake in Sullivan County, NY.  I loved drawing this because it brought some level of peace in this crazy time.  I haven't drawn landscapes before and I found the video really helpful.  I tried to make the big tree on the right the focal point but I guess I could have also spent more time and detail with the smaller tree in the middle left.  Once I look at a scene, I'm not sure exactly how to figure out what should be the focal point, but it was fun to draw this place which is a special place to me.  --Trudy
      • Patricia
        Participant
        Chirps: 23
        whipporwheel
        This is beautiful!   I’m in Western NY, too.   It’s full of lovely landscapes.   I really resonate to your comment about painting during stressful times.
      • Kathy
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        Great Kills Park

        @Patricia I agree- painting has really helped me too!  I am downstate in Staten Island- fortunately we are known as the borough of parks-  love the drawings- landscape painting is difficult - this is my first attempt with watercolor, and I am glad I tried this medium.

      • Tanis
        Participant
        Chirps: 23
        tanislynn
        I am spending more time near lakes and rivers to beat the heat and for landscape painting. In this painting I like the way you have captured movement in the water. It is one thing that I am still trying to do.
    • Student Birder
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      trudy10024
      Goldfinch scanI drew a goldfinch but didn't do the best job in capturing the subtleties and shading. One problem I ran into is the color yellow.  I have problems shading it and not muddying it.  For me, it's a really challenging color.  I would like to add more background as that might add some contrast so the yellow doesn't look so washed out.   -- Trudy
    • Heidi
      Participant
      Chirps: 12
      HeidiTas
      Practicing with Reference Photos IMG20200324161648Yellow Wattlebird This is something that I could definitely practice a lot.  Perhaps I should have started with something a little easier.  I soon discovered that there were lots of aspects of this bird that were very tricky, like all the streaking, barring and chevrons.
      • Heidi
        Participant
        Chirps: 12
        HeidiTas
        LandscapeA fairly quick landscape from a campsite, looking at Stacks Bluff.  I think I could use a darker value for the dolerite rocks of the bluff.
    • Denise
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      dchaffner
      While weeding outside in my garden, I noticed how delicate this plant is. It is only 2 inches across at the base and 6 inches tall. I really enjoyed its rosette form and the purple in the stems.image
    • Bobbi
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      baholm
      308C793F-BB25-4668-9CF7-0A102F5AC373This wasn’t from a field observation but rather from an book.  Used the same general technique as in the lesson.
      • Leah
        Participant
        Chirps: 5
        lbaker90
        Lovely!
      • Cristina
        Participant
        Chirps: 5
        Cristyal
        Amazing book!, i have it near and it looks super alike
    • Juan
      Participant
      Chirps: 18
      Juan Jo
      image0 (3)
    • Geminis
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      geminis
      20200305_165355
      • Leslie
        Participant
        Chirps: 8
        lesliehthomas
        I love the way you have captured the delicate features of this hummingbird's face and beak. Fascinating!
    • Christi-June
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      christijune
      organizing my supplies is not so hard for me, I just keep it all in my backpack and try to bring a few sheets of paper towels with me.   As far as recording my observations I definitelybneed to integrate that more as I have been focusing in improving my drawings and practicing painting.20200229_155726
    • Maggie
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      maggiewuts
      I just got back from vacation at a VRBO in the woods that had a nice variety of birds come to the deck to feed.  I was there every morning when they came for breakfast taking photos with my phone, which weren't very good but good enough to get the postures.  For each type of bird I saw, I sketched from my photos and then found a nice, clear image on line to paint from.  I love sketching but watercolor makes me tense.  I hope to overcome that with more practice...I have a lot more birds left to sketch and paint!Junco
      • S
        Participant
        Chirps: 32
        twistybear
        Really nice Maggie!
    • Craig
      Participant
      Chirps: 20
      cmflyer
      Did these two pages for this lesson. The squirrel is from a photo near Yellowstone last summer. I started with a quick sketch, then went back in for the details, then got the watercolors going. Fun to mix the colors to match the photo. Really helpful to use the color guide on the box since they don't always look the same dry as wet. For the outdoor portion I walked down by our nearby river with my journal and pencil and did a quick sketch of an old cottonwood along with a couple of doug firs and some shrubs and grass. As there were snow showers in the area, I took a photo and went back inside to do the watercolor. Looking forward to a nice day to take the whole production outside.  It turned out to be more of a landscape than a nature study, but I did observe that the needles on firs and pines seem to be little disks or blobs of green overlaid on the branches. Still trying to get a good watercolor technique for that, along with the trees up on the ridge. For the snowy background, I like the dry on dry technique to get interspersed white patches.IMG_1738IMG_1746
      • S
        Participant
        Chirps: 32
        twistybear
        Love the chipmunk.
    • Donna
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      jalexaphotography
      1. I have difficulty organizing materials in the field. I have bags and tins for each item, but I find myself digging in those organizers for the colors or tools I need. 2. I've used the watercolor to roughly sketch in the colors I see in the field. I must draw too small or need a finer point brush for the details. I find I'm mixing color pencils into the watercolor sketches to get the details into the image. However, what I do love about watercolors is the wash for backgrounds that are out of focus. It give you the impression of the background. It's a nice effect. 3. I'm not thrilled with my results here. As I mentioned, I struggled with details.   IMG_6981
    • Constance
      Participant
      Chirps: 26
      constancekel
      Log Boom Prk 01272020 1)I do have trouble organizing my materials! At least, I have dedicated a bag for supplies so they are easy to grab. I would like to get a small board to clip everything to as a base for holding paint and my journal--artist friends have recommended that. 2)I think that one of the benefits of painting in the field is that it makes me slow down, listen, and think. For example, why are some ducks in breeding plumage now, but other duck species won't be in breeding plumage until much later?
    • Martha Davis
      Participant
      Chirps: 18
      pattonmd
      bird
      • Constance
        Participant
        Chirps: 26
        constancekel
        Is your robin done with wet on wet technique? I really like how you layered the orange to show the contour on the robin.
    • Alvin
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      awhill
      I used a reference photo. The sky is wet on wet. Some of the fur is brushed with a drier brush. It is easier on good watercolour paper- I find the mixed media paper is thin. I used a fine marker for the black areas. It is not forgiving when you make a mistake. It was a challenge with the shades of fur so it was good practise with refining colour and tones and shades. Using the negative space and the proportion tricks was very helpful!  07A914A2-1239-4BA2-A79E-C2457B308CB8
      • Constance
        Participant
        Chirps: 26
        constancekel
        I like how you drew the detailed fur just at the edges of the body! Did you remove water from the brush to draw such  detailed lines?
      • Craig
        Participant
        Chirps: 20
        cmflyer

        @Constance That's what I'm trying for more detail, but I wonder if a fine point brush would be better. Still not sure how the detailed pencil lines are supposed to integrate into the watercolor.

      • Constance
        Participant
        Chirps: 26
        constancekel

        @Craig Yes,I am thinking of getting a finer point brush or using the Micron pen that was recommended for the course. I have tried to figure out the pencil line thing, too. I think they are just a guide for the water color, maybe? I definitely need to know more about technique.

    • Mary Jo
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      mp2162
      cVMMYNRNS3CxUBiRpAJXDA_thumb_14c0 I've been enjoying this course and learning so much about water color(you have to let it dry, try a paler color than you think at first and just enjoy the process).  I haven't been outside to try and paint a landscape but looking forward to trying that.
    • Donna
      Participant
      Chirps: 32
      donnacnh
      48F493C0-1643-44EE-901A-BD107910C3E5 Working on adding color and using references, this one still needs more layering but getting there.
    • Amy
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      amy_jay_bee
      68DE768C-F468-4437-90A0-63DA3B73FA4F First watercolor sketch in the field. I highly recommend a thermos of tea for chilly days! I wish I’d remembered to bring a paper towel or rag, but otherwise I was happy with my kit. I enjoyed the process immensely. Working in color, I see things I wouldn’t notice if I were just drawing or writing, like how much moss was on the gnarled oak that is the focal point. And it’s fun mixing colors, though I quickly ran out of palette space. If I had it to do over again, I think I would use dry-on-dry for a lot of that tree, different layers of different colors. I have a lot to learn before I can get sketches out of the ugly duckling stage in less than an hour, but looking at it now I realize how much the sketch brings back: not just the tree but the feeling of sitting right next to the creek in the damp air and hearing all the birds around me. This little creek is a tiny ribbon of woodland in ag fields and the birds, well, flock to it.
      • Constance
        Participant
        Chirps: 26
        constancekel
        Did you use glazing black over blue to darken the reflection on the water? Very effective! I also need to find a way to work more quickly; I have to work faster before it starts raining! I would like to get to where I am done in less than an hour, too. I wonder if it just takes practice or if there are tips for working more quickly.
    • Donna
      Participant
      Chirps: 32
      donnacnh
      I was going to go out today and sketch but the windy 18 degree F weather sent me back inside.  My paint would have frozen faster than it dried.  Outdoor nature journaling is a challenge in New Hampshire this time of year.
    • Christy
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      ChristyMorrow
      hMFma4PKSe6ElnKRkVxXwQ First I painted the chiminea, then I came back and added the foreground and background.  I haven't had time do a landscape  at my favorite spots yet.  But I'm looking forward to increasing my skills.  I'm having a lot of fun especially mixing the colors.  I'm looking forward to adding color to my journal.
    • Donna
      Participant
      Chirps: 32
      donnacnh
      A comparison study with color added. 6DA1E6D4-6293-43D1-9937-BE9672B2BB38
    • Peggy
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      pegs-birder
      CAADABA5-1974-41E9-A8F9-9F4688E9C7E2 After having gone back to the same area many times to practice gesture drawing I decided to compose a journal page with a few of the birds and squirrels that I had watched and drew. What struck me was all of the different journal pages that I would enjoy doing just at this one location. One of the things that is always a struggle for me is depicting the horizon in a realistic manner.
      • Constance
        Participant
        Chirps: 26
        constancekel
        Your sky is done so well! Is that wet on wet?
    • Jessica
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      Jessica_Ballard
      I had a fun time painting this experience at Big Sur, California. I love going by the coast, and I particularly like it when it's overcast and the water transitions into a darker color than its usual blue/green color. I'm excited to practice in different environments and experiment with all the colors in my palette. Landscape
    • Aimee
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      aimee_lusty
      IMG_5816IMG_5817 Two drawings from the same sit spot. I am finding these exercises are helping me loosen up and work faster, not paying so much attention to detail, but rather focusing on composition, shape, and gesture. Just getting used to juggling my materials in the field.
    • laurel
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      LaurelSharp
      621A9893-336D-41C0-AE78-711225AC6B11Mixing the colors was fun. I’ve been to the zoo a couple of times, doing some sketching there, and also taking pictures for later. I need more practice with negative space; yellow frog came out a bit crumpled. In a backpack I carry little bottles of water around as well as my paint set and brush and paper towel. Also a little stool. Sketching and painting from a photo is way different than real life—I was trying for a buffalo outside, but it started to snow, and my wet sketchbook would accept neither pen nor pencil.
    • Evelyn
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      Eviebt
      class photoLearning to draw and using watercolors for the first time has been a fun experience. Here is my first crack at watercolor (from a postcard I received from Germany) and I'm mostly happy with it. I need to make a bigger effort to set aside time everyday to practice drawing and mixing colors!
    • Kati
      Participant
      Chirps: 12
      KatiJackson
      i maybe cheated a little, i painted this from my window, so i was able to have all my supplies out on the table. i need to come up with a way to have a clean water cup while out in the field. my paint tin is fairly small, so it's easy to carry around. i really love using color to capture shadows, more so than just with pencil.   IMG_8988
      • Robert
        Participant
        Chirps: 8
        rdueweke
        Nice painting. Maybe because I live in the Bronx.
    • C
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Lokimason
      Over all I'm pretty happy with this with this first try. I do think the edges of black on the wings and tail feathers could have softer edges and the body outline could be better. I see that practice is still needed! 20191111_183819
    • Sandy
      Participant
      Chirps: 20
      SRMelton
      I see the value of planning the page layout, yet I do enjoy just letting it happen!IMG_0036
    • Janice
      Participant
      Chirps: 9
      janlan
      This is my first water color effort. The loon was pictured in a calendar. The class has been a joy especially in the chilly Minnesota fall. I have a lot of questions about going forward, but look forward to discovering the answers. IMG_5312 2
    • Montecito
      Participant
      Chirps: 22
      favelasco
      This is my backyard, It is so green Because Its the rainy season. The leaves are big and the color is amazingly bright. image
    • Sandy
      Participant
      Chirps: 20
      SRMelton
      Practice painting from a photo: maintaining fine white lines on the edges of the tail feathers was a challenge. Maybe with lots of practice this will become easier :)IMG_0019
      • Montecito
        Participant
        Chirps: 22
        favelasco
        Hello  Sandy, it is very beautiful,  I really love the wings and the texture around the eye. I can see you used wet on diy technique, that is my favourite too.
      • Chris
        Participant
        Chirps: 6
        spiderman97219
        This is beautiful !!!!
      • Mary Jo
        Participant
        Chirps: 11
        mp2162
        I love the details on the wings and the colors are really great! so cool!
      • Rocky
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        rocky140
        I also love the face and the wings!
      • Leah
        Participant
        Chirps: 5
        lbaker90
        Amazing!
    • Montecito
      Participant
      Chirps: 22
      favelasco
      It was a bit complicated to have all my materials in the field. The best is to get the water tank brushes! I took a folding chair with me, it also helped. Constructing a complete journal has been a challenge for me, because I never remember to take complete notes, If I draw and colour, I forget to take notes. If I take notes and draw, i do not have the time to add colours.  I imagine that skills come with time and lots of practice. Before I share my journal, I will try to make my journal page more accurate and including the subjects learned in the course.
    • Julia
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      JKelly1963
      88BA35D6-65AC-48D2-937B-505CACAB6B0F
    • Jane
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      jane.baird
      This was based on a reference photo, and inspired by my first guided bird walk, hosted by the local Audubon Society.   The kingfisher who was perched over a pond, took my breath away.  I feel that the colors were OK, but I have a lot to learn about how to capture the pose and demeanor of the bird. %RAEk3MWTFKNShOlC8yJGw
      • Christina
        Participant
        Chirps: 19
        Chris2019
        Beautiful! Kingfishers are marvelous birds, have such agility and alertness and you captured him beautifully! I love the spark in his eye!
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