• 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.
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      • 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:
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      • 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:
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      • 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!)
    • 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: 44
      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
      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
      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
      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
      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
        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!
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    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      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
      • Dominique
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        I like the mood you have captured with the colours.
    • Cheryl
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      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
      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
        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
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    • linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
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    • Kathy B.
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      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: 16
        I had to laugh at your description but I like the result!
    • Giuliana
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      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
      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
      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
      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: 21
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      • Cecilia
        Participant
        Chirps: 19
        I love these! You captured the motion very well. Thanks for sharing :)
    • sondra
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
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    • Jane
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      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
        Really good! Its beautiful and you did an awesome job using the pencil to make it darker
    • Jane
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      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
      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: 21
        This is so nice. Great detail.
      • Géry
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        Oh! You are very lucky to see that rare and endangered wood warbler species that breeds in old-growth hardwood forests! Beautifull sketch too!
      • Lisa
        Participant
        Chirps: 13
        So lovely! I might have seen one this spring, although they are quite rare in Maine. You are so lucky to have this bird in your neck of the woods. Beautiful painting!
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 19
      And another.   Kingfisher in color