• Bird Academy
      Bird Academy
      1. Tell us about your sit spot experience! Upload and share your corresponding journal page if you’d like to. If you went more than once, did you notice changes or new things on later visits? 2. What kinds of observations come more easily to you, and which are a little more "outside of the box" for you?
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    • Gloria
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I heard a lot of birdsong including sparrows and I saw a red winged blackbird fly by. I like drawing and sketching flowers.. haven't tried drawing birds much yet.
    • Toni
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      I realize, looking at my drawing(s) that I prefer the up-close approach and the broad sweep drawings are a little more "outside the box" for me.  But it was delightlful to sit outside and just observe.  Surprised at how fast the time went by.  Fun class!IMG_8306
    • Daniela
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      a little of birding in the window of the office   WhatsApp Image 2024-04-11 at 9.52.01 AM
    • Kathleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      Sit Spot
    • MF
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      Pretty cold up here in Quebec  today. Went out early with my ornithology club but too cold to sit in one spot. Many migration birds, a marvelous sight.imageIMG_0312 Back home, sat in my kitchen and observed the birds coming at the feeder outside. Noted my sensations and surroundings and attempted a few live sketches. Was like a plentiful meditation. This is our last day of true winter and snow here, and it gave us the most beautiful day before it departs for another year. image
    • Jodilyn
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Sunny and 60ish degrees - I was amazed by the amount of activity in a sit spot in my own backyard.  There were at least 9 different types of birds in just 20 minutes - at first just a few and then many on the ground, in the trees, up on the roof.  Their different songs filled the air.  Bird music!!  A rabbit ran between the quail walking across the yard.  Slowly I noticed the different hues of the trees - brilliant greens, with yellows and browns.  I felt the slight breeze and heard a few pods drop on the ground from the tree above.  I noticed all the different types of leaves, needles, etc covering the ground around me.  And now there are so many flowers starting to bloom.   I can't wait to do this again in other places.
    • Elizabeth
      Participant
      Chirps: 12
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      • Cornelia
        Participant
        Chirps: 6
        I really like this, your whole front garden on one page, one can really feel the awakening of spring. :-)
    • Kim
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      It's still winter in the area of my home location on February 19, 2024. Its also Family Day, a holiday. The sun is shinning no clouds in the sky. The wind is from the North at km/hr. The temperature is -6.4C. I am viewing from the Studio, looking S/SE. The Sunlight feels warm, and reflects off the snow, blinding white. The snow is melting off the roof, slow drips on the deck below. The water is melting and moving to the downspouts, while pouring  our the down converters. Looking at the bird feeders, the Junco comes by, then the chickadee's flittering back and forth. I was out earlier feeling the warmth of the Sunshine, the odd breeze blown, chilly, but good. The buds on the trees are sill tightly bound . though earlier this last week, the sap was running in the maples. The sap water was overpouring the pores and creating sap sickles. Nature is awesome.  Just finished my last bird count for the backyard bird count 2024.
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      I was at a Florida state park, and found a place to sit along the river.  It was hrd for me to just sit and experience rather than "doing" something.  I was much more tuned into sounds than I have been when actively working on journaling.  When I'm actually journaling , it's my sense of sight that I'm using more.  ITried to tune into other senses like smell and touch but these were harder.
    • Heidi
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      Today, I sat by the water's edge of Seymore Pond in Brewster, MA. I have a home here, so I often sit on my deck in the summer, record the conditions, and write in my journal. But I haven't done it in February on a 30-degree day. I brought my chair down to the beach for a more immersive experience. Today, there is a forlorn mood because everything is a muted grey at various scales. Even the scrub pines' green needles have a grey feel because of the light snow falling and the solid grey sky. Now that I’m back in the house and up above the water at the treen line, the needles are a brighter green, but nothing is vibrant.  The dead trees are coated on the north side with snow from Tuesday’s storm. It is a strange, almost perfect stripe up the sides of the trunks. Despite the lifeless feel, I could see several buffleheads swimming on the opposite side of the pond, and my Merlin app recorded various songbirds, from Cardinals to Carolina wrens. It also caught the song of a common loon. I did spot the female cardinal, but I didn’t see any of the other birds from my spot. Even though it felt forlorn, it also felt peaceful. Before I left, a mallard couple swam nearby, but as soon as they spotted me, they lifted off and flapped away. I folded my chair and walked back up to the house, chilled but satisfied.
    • Sara
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I'm enjoying that each lesson has a different intention and theme and each layer on one another. The process is gentle and fun. Its helped me move away from self criticism and enjoy learning.
    • Deb
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      For February it's very unusual for Minnesota to be snowless!  The birds must be finding seeds and berries elsewhere because we are not going through our bird seed very fast.  Enjoyed sitting still for 40 minutes watching and observing. Very meditative. IMG_0052
    • Sarah
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      I couldn't go anywhere but wanted to do a lesson.  I observed sounds and drew an aging Poinsettia from the holidays that is hanging on. It was a great experience, can't wait to do it out with a bit more nature t0 take in, tomorrow perhaps.PXL_20240212_203926953
    • Tracy
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
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    • Pamela
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      There were contractors working out back, but I found a corner of my patio to sit in the sunny/cool mid-day. It's usually pretty noisy on weekends, and yet, no mowers. The contrast of living in the woods, but in a development is unique, and I noticed the ranges of sounds, including birds. I used a deck upright and some patio blocks to frame my sketch, which was fun. The late afternoons also include waterfowl settling in near the water nearby. I'm going to enjoy noting both seasons and time of day in this sit spot.
    • Becky
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      On this rainy day, instead of a sit spot, I found a photo I took of a memorble landscape in Samburu National Park, in 2022. Looking carefully at the photo, I was taken back to this beautiful day and reawakened my senses to the "awe" I felt at the magnificant scenery and incredible nature, existing wild and free. Samburu National Park Africa Rebecca Laboy Samburu National Park Africa Landscape 290822 RLaboy 1
      • Pamela
        Participant
        Chirps: 6
        Becky. This is so nice-- I can really see your unique painterly eye in play!
      • Cornelia
        Participant
        Chirps: 6
        I love your painting, Becky, very special and the mood of the landscape comes across very well.
    • Stephanie
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I sat at a window overlooking our backyard and our bird feeder setup.  I always enjoy seeing our bird visitors, but it was even nicer to devote 30+ minutes watching their ebbs and flows and all the variety.  That was mixed in with several squirrels still trying to figure out how to get to the good bird food.  The experience allowed me to focus on unique patterns/shapes of the birds/squirrels as well as identifying colors (such as the pink feet of a mourning dove).  I enjoyed the challenge of quick sketching also before the animal moved - and realistic postures they exhibitIMG_8950IMG_8949
    • lorna
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      do hard to draw anything sitting outside after a snowstorm, so I sat in my living room, watching out the window and doing a few sketches, and made notationsIMG_0466
    • Breanna
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I have certainly found that drawing the same image multiple times helps me remember the lessons we're learning and how to execute them. It also has the benefit of showing me how much improvement can be made in just an hour which helps keep me wanting to continue my learning and not get discouraged. If the first bird was the only one I drew, I definitely would move forward thinking I couldn't do any better, when clearly I can! IMG20240114180514
    • Kimberly
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      IMG_1681It was only 29 degrees, overcast and breezy  and I wasn't up for sitting outside.  Instead I opened a window and sat and observed my backyard.  I saw several different animal tracks in the snow on my patio - squirrel, bunny and raccoon.  Further back are deer tracks.  I watched cardinals and chickadees fly back and forth over the yard, from feeders to the shelter of the arborvitae and a cherry tree.  I watched a cardinal try to cozy up next to two chicadees, but every time he sidled up next to them they flew to a different branch!  I watched a squirrel burrow his face in the snow, possibly looking for a stored nut.  Aside from some distant crows cawing and a "Hooting" bird in the distant trees across the field  in my backyard, it was incredibly quiet.  No traffic noise or sounds of industry.  It was quite a blissful respite.  Glad for the time to sit and observe!  This will be a. new experience for me.  I am often (pretty much daily) in the woods - but I am on the move hiking and always looking to pick up my pace.  It'll be quite a different vibe to add in a sit spot on the trail!  I am looking forward to this new adventure.
    • Raegan
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      Ive always had a sit spot wherever I have moved (i read about it in a book), but this time, it was even more captivating and exiting in the forest. The birds chatted in the trees as the squirrels leaped through the leaflitter. A rabbit even decided to show! Though i still wait for the arrival of my new notebook the experience of the natural world still is a cherished part of my day.
    • alegria
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      WhatsApp Image 2023-11-10 at 2.55.22 PM This place is just outside of my property, everyday when a go out I can see the green iguanas feeding in the mangroves.  It is the first time a draw it, so I had to pay attention on some details I never saw before. The spot looks always the same, even the iguanas they don't really move a lot, what is different everyday are the birds, different kind of herons and egrets come and go. Many small birds were singing and passed flying.
    • Katherine
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      IMG_3866 I went to my local nature reserve and enjoyed sitting and observing from a boardwalk overlook of a swamp. The most interesting thing that I got out of this exercise was the incredible range of sounds that I heard as I sketched—birds, insects, and one mysterious splashing sound that I never got to the bottom of. It really helped me be more present in the moment and get out of my head for a few minutes!
    • Camille
      Participant
      Chirps: 9
      My "sit spot" was in my backyard, at the edge of the stone patio. This is my first drawing from this spot - in fact, it is my first "sit spot" drawing! It was very cloudy and started to drizzle lightly, but I stayed put. Focusing on the plants was easy for me. I noticed that my intense concentration on writing and drawing (something that I have never done before outside of elementary school) blocked out some of the surrounding sounds: like the birds. From time to time, I stopped to listen and heard a blue jay and red-bellied woodpecker. But what other birds did I miss? Screenshot 2023-08-10 at 12.52.34 PM