• Mayumi
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      At the beginning, I could not sense anything new. I tried a couple of 15 minutes sessions, but I just felt what I usually felt. Through reading and looking at the journals of others, I realized it is ok not to have any new discoveries. I just wrote what I saw, heard, and felt. I found that it was relaxing, yet challenging to just sit and write and draw while other chores were waiting to be done. It required me patience. It is good exercise for me to be in a moment, not to rush, and to take my time. I also found that spending a little bit of time everyday by the window gave me joy to find different flowers blooming different timing, which gave me sense of the spring approaching. IMG_3479
    • While I was biking the other day, I found this little spot called The Jim King Pond. It's a nice little pond with two mute swans and a pair of Canada geese. The easiest observations where the details to the birds, but what was a little outside of the box was actually the landscaping. IMG_20200405_122119
    • Suzy
      Participant
      Chirps: 13
      It took me a while to find something to draw. I was waiting for a magical moment or a bird landing in front of my face. That didn't happen, but the longer I did find things to look at. I came to this spot to check on the spring flowers so those where my main focus. After 30min squirrels came back out, birds came a little closer. Sit Spot
    • Leah
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      It was great doing my sit spot experience in my back yard (I couldn't go anywhere else because I'm an 11 year old kid that a. doesn't know how to drive, and b. my parents probably won't let me go anywhere else outside alone, and they're pretty busy). At first there wasn't that much to see, but as time passed by, I could see much more birds, including a juvenile Bald Eagle which I didn't know that I would see, and a steller's jay that flew into our bird feeder, which was really unexpected because they are usually shy in my area. It was hard to see differences in the landscape for me because I look at the birds, but I will try to improve and notice more changes in the landscape and plants. I was surprised at how many birds that I got to see in that time period, though.
      • Leah
        Participant
        Chirps: 15
        Backyard Sitting Mar 4, 2020
      • Shir
        Participant
        Chirps: 29

        @Leah Your experience sounds awesome and makes me smile as I think of the excitement you must have felt. Neat Journaling, too.

      • Carree
        Participant
        Chirps: 8

        @Shir Great detail on the Bewick's Wren tail!

      • Carree
        Participant
        Chirps: 8

        @Leah My previous comment was intended for Leah but I messed up and responded to Shir so please ignore that one. Don't see a way to delete it. Woops.

    • Montana
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      It was a lovely experience. Went to a trail not too far from my home and just sat and listened. So many birds were singing (even one I hadn't heard before!) and the water dropped throughout the forest since there had just been a downpour. I am building up my listening skills to be able to pick out birds I hear more readily so I'm working hard on my ability to perceive things through sound. It was relaxin and it was amazing how quickly the time went by. image0
    • Catherine
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      While I started this course in October I am just completing this exercise now, sitting in my snowy garden. I learned a lot and will need to practice this much more often. The gesture drawing lesson is very helpful here with the birds in the yard. I was a bit surprised that I wrote much more than I drew. Maybe the ratio will shift when my drawing skills improve. I paid much closer attention to the structure of the snowdrops than I would in the past. I looked at how they survived last week’s 30 cm snowfall and how the leaves may have helped shelter the blossoms. CE073E5D-43EA-4DC7-8405-682785678F54
    • Matt
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      IMG_5942
      • Shir
        Participant
        Chirps: 29
        I am taking my time with the class as I want it to last forever and never end. I am spending much time practicing each activity in lessons. Thanks for sharing your experience.
    • Avery
      Participant
      Chirps: 28
      Hello all, Trying again to load my sit spot on Plummets Island20200328_141332, 5 miles from Washington, DC. Avery              
      • Shir
        Participant
        Chirps: 29
        Wow! A belted kingfisher. I would love to see one. They say they are on our riverbank but I have yet to see one. Not giving up. That is a fine sketch. Like your journal entry.
      • Kathleen
        Participant
        Chirps: 74
        I appreciate these beautiful sketches, the kingfisher is very appealing.
    • Dorothy D
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      IMG_7189IMG_7187 I went down to the edge of the woods adjacent to where I live to regroup and decompress during a stint at the computer for teaching online these days(I am an art teacher).It is something I do anyway on a daily basis.I have always looked for nature's clues and changes on a daily observations so this is not an unknown territory for me.  A neighbor has placed various weathered benches here and there for us to sit and ponder. Since it was 2pm there was not as much bird activity as I would have liked as I know birds will rest before they start their food hunt later. However after 20 minutes, I could hear the cardinals,chickadees and a lone towhee starting up again. Spring greens are starting to appear on the poplars and oaks around here(photo)and a ground cover myrtle and a few  mayapples (early!) are starting to pop up.
    • Tony
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      IMG_5382
      • Andrew
        Participant
        Chirps: 13
        Very cool integration of text and image!
      • Carol
        Participant
        Chirps: 17
        I agree with Andrew - I like the way you wove the text into the drawing and your sketches make me think of all the same birds we see in our nearby marshes.
      • Carree
        Participant
        Chirps: 8
        I also agree, I like the way you incorporated the text and imagery into one cohesive scene.
      • Dominique
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        Great the way text runs through the plant stems, makes it more complete.
    • Suzanne
      Participant
      Chirps: 22
      IMG_6968Though our pond has been here for 3 years, this is the first time I have had a sit spot next to it. What a pleasure it was to watch the fish patterns and hear the squirrel and crow scold me for showing up on their land. I enlarged the single koi in the pond to get a better sense of his appearance. Our koi is all white with some grey. All of his peers have failed to survive, but he survives with his gold fish minions each season. The pond it 8 ' by 11" and 3 feet deep with two water falls. Since it isn't opened yet, there is no sound of rushing water yet. Perhaps in April.
    • Avery
      Participant
      Chirps: 28
      Hello all,  I am really enjoying seeing all of your work! My sit spot was on Plummers Island in the Potomac River about 5 miles from Washington,  DC. It is near the Chesapeake  and Ohio Canal National Park. I was looking for spring wildflowers and bees, but saw and heard much more. I sat on a rock on my coat to draw, but soon had to put my coat on. The wind was cold. It was a peaceful place to draw and paint.
    • Chantal
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I sat by the lake and watched the  goldeneyes do what they do. They moved back when I first got there but started to come in closer again after around 20 minutes, just like the lesson said! I was originally just going to leave the picture on the left side and the writing on the right, but then I started writing all over the picture and painting around the notes and it ended up like this. Noticing dead plants was a new one for me, but it was actually pretty interesting once I started looking, touching and even smelling them 20200319_154708
      • Carol
        Participant
        Chirps: 17
        I enjoyed your use of watercolor and I loved your comments and questions!
    • Sarah
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      8AF14D27-873C-40A1-ABF7-33EF60F0CAA3
    • Colleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      IMG_1563
    • David
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      I was in my backyard garden. It's in urban area surrounded by houses, but I can see the neighbours garden's too. There's a lot a concrete in the ground but some islands for trees or flowers. Biodiversity is low in general although one can see some buterflies, some caterpillar, snails, slugs, earthworms, wild birds, pets. The feature trees are 2 Persimmon trees that atract the "wildlife". This time of the year Spring is on the move, some flowers blossomed already. Even if the Persimmon trees lack leafs, birds use them as perch site for singing. The activity of the Magpies (Pica pica) was a thing to notice and created questions to explore. Their behaviour in the tree and later on the ground caught my attencion. Another highlight was a call sound of a European Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis) which is unusual to ear, based in the past experiences, although they are ubiquous species in Portugal. Also the lack of European Serin (Serinus serinus) calls or songs today was a surprise because I know their nest site.89712838_658347004925841_1780687728615096320_n
      • David
        Participant
        Chirps: 21
        P.S. Sorry for some bad spelling.
    • Koen
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      I sat down in my backyard.  It was mostly cloudy with  now and then a softening sunny spell.  My garden is usually crowded with birds, but no bird showed up this time.  Maybe, the timing was wrong  and the birds  were having their  siesta.  I imagined then their  little  stomachs filled with the food I provided a couple hours ago... But I was far from being alone: I could hear bird songs all around me: Within five minutes, I recorded 10 species. As you can see on the list, they are not American, because I live in Belgium. Awaiting any bird to show up, I was mesmerized by the rocking twigs of the hazel tree in the chilly south west breeze. Gradually, they  put me in an almost hypnotic state. “Shall we droodle a bit” said the twigs.  The daffodils nodded in consent and together they started to write their invisible story in the sky. My hands followed this thoughtless dance and they started sketching the garden in front of me.  Suddenly, a little bug landed on my page telling me that my sketch was finished, and here it is!  Not an artwork, but  .. Who cares?  The beauty is in the experience.. 2020-3-14 Garden Koen
    • Celeste
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I enjoyed looking at everyone's journal's so much! I live in the pacific northwest and sat on my deck. I sketched where the alder branches and douglas fir branches met because the contrast was striking. IMG_20200307_110639
    • Patricia
      Participant
      Chirps: 23
      Sit spotIt's been too cold here to sit outside for any length of time, so I took a 20-minute stroll around my yard a few days ago.  I found these snowdrops, the first new growth of the season.  I was amazed at how much I noticed, even in that short amount of time, and in such a limited location.
    • Patricia
      Participant
      Chirps: 23
      SnowdropsYesterday I took a 15-minute walk in my garden and made notes about what I saw.  I couldn't sit, as it was 34 degrees out, but I came inside and wrote down everything I observed.  I was amazed at how much I saw even in such a limited space and time!  Here's my journal page:Sit spot
    • Geminis
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      20200305_173743
    • Jeanette
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      sit log
    • Toni
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      B5F1EC43-5CBA-4838-A6E3-2720E10A0A52I loved this experience! Noticed sounds first then tuned into looking at my surroundings. I hope to make this a regular part of my daily life. I think it would be helpful as I go through stressful times and enjoyable for its own sake as well.
    • Toni
      Participant
      Chirps: 11
      I loved this activity and would like to make it a regular part of my daily life. The easiest for me to focus in on were the sounds. They seemed to be my entry point into the experience. From there I went on to looking at my surroundings. 2DFF85C4-264A-4F78-9854-BB88E691F263
    • Wendy
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      It was a beach with large outcroppings of sandstone; early morning, very sunny and warm. A place I’ve been before and normally would have moved on quickly. Not today....sketching the scene made me oblivious to how long I actually stayed! I was aware of wave action, the style and activity of the people on the beach....it even helped with my problems with proportion.