• Tom
      Participant
      Chirps: 20
      Hi Artists- Glad to have discovered this course and this community.  I’m inspired (into ACTION) by the musings and dabbling of others, the celebration of PROCESS and the absolutely true adage that there is no wrong way to delve into something that beckons involvement.  I signed up for this course, also bought an incredible book someone recommended (“The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing and Journaling”) AND it all is happening during “Inktober2019” (check it out!) so it’s going to be a very draw-y month for me. I really enjoyed listening to the artists in the videos who shared their journals and thought process, and also all these comments from the community. NO shortage of inspiration, affirmation and very comforting to have the connection(s). THANKS! - Tom in Wauwatosa, WI
    • Jen
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      We are homeschoolers, and my son’s homeschooling last year incorporated nature journaling. I really enjoyed doing that with him, and as a birder, I decided I wanted to do more of it— but as someone who has never felt naturally artistic, it remained feeling a little intimidating to me. I also do a lot of nature photography, and I like the idea of trying a method of documenting my ramblings that involves a slower pace and allows for integrating the images and my thoughts together more in the moment. I definitely like integrating the images and the text. I don’t know how proficient I’ll become at the drawing aspect of this, but at the very least I hope to be able to focus on getting down important field marks, background environment, or zoomed in details in different drawings. My biggest challenge will be choosing ONE thing to focus on at a time. I see watercolors mentioned a lot, and I’d love to give them a try. I have a lot of different media at my disposal, and hopefully over time I’ll discover which are the most practical for me to carry in my field back and get my observations down in my journal!
    • Vanessa
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I am new to nature journaling; I have journaled daily most of my adult life.  I am looking forward to the observation of the natural world and working to capture that on paper.  I love the combination of words and drawings on one page along with spaces for facts and questions - the idea that it doesn't have to be complete at one time appeals to me which is a bit counter to my perfectionist tendencies.  I see the course as an opportunity to be free, to experiment and allow the process to unfold.  I also want to work on my drawing and painting abilities.
    • Robin
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I wanted a way to slow down and interact more thoughtfully with the natural world around me.  I want to try being less concerned with capturing an entire "picture" and more focussed on seeing the shapes, and details that will help with identification, but also with using the process as a way to more thoroughly understand what I'm seeing.  I'm inspired by other's journals to try adding in verbal description and thoughts to my visual journals.
    • Ka-wren
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Over the past nine years, I have become disabled and have limited mobility.  My career was in IT, and I still spend many hours a day on computer-related volunteer activities.  To balance that, I have always done photography and, more recently, painting on my iPad in the ProCreate app.  When I saw this course advertised, I decided to take it in order to add another artistic endeavor to my repertoire, one that doesn't require that I walk great distances.  I found that photography greatly enhanced my observation skills and feel that creating a nature journal will bring those skills to another level.
    • Richard
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I am very excited to begin the journal at the cottage this weekend (Thanksgiving in Canada) and already looking at my garden a little differently. I do spend time in the city as well and I am thinking that I might start a separate Urban Journal. Best to everybody.
    • Gail
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I like the idea of learning about nature through sketching and writing together. The process requires you to slow down in order to think about and observe your surroundings. I expect to use a combination of the approaches.
    • Kim
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      IMG_0690
      • Kim
        Participant
        Chirps: 7
        Oops!  I was so excited at having completed a drawing that I posted it in the wrong place.  Sorry!
      • Rose
        Participant
        Chirps: 15
        Lovely! Like the idea of the gender symbol.
    • William
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      Sketching and drawing is something I have not done in many years.  Life got very busy and things that I used to do and enjoy, I did not  have time to do.  I have always enjoyed watching birds, particularly shore birds.  I am using this course to help me get back to one of the things that I enjoy. I have done journals on the job before and realize the importance of doing them.  I want to start a journal so I can do my sketching and record the details so they can be used later for my drawings.
    • Catherine
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      I have kept a written weather/nature notebook for years. Last year I started a homemade bird book from my photographs but found myself wanting to make more notes about their behaviour throughout the year, like chickadees making a nest in a dead apple tree in my yard. I tried small drawings but was frustrated by my lack of skill. I have learned some ideas from each of the journals shown. I like the zoom idea, trying different movements of the birds and simple use of colour. I am also learning a lot from the comments of my new classmates, thanks!
    • Kathy
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      What inspired me to begin nature journaling? An inner inclination to capture those things that capture me in written and illustrated form. The desire to improve my observation skills in every area of my life, but especially as a means to celebrate and enjoy the intricacies and marvels of creation. Observation requires a person to slow down, and slowing down is a spiritually, physically, emotionally and mentally healthy activity. And, finally, it makes my husband happy. He introduced me to this course.
    • Deborah
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      There is such a calming, healing, rejuvenating force experienced in being in nature and I know it is a place I want to incorporate into my daily life more.  My goals with nature journaling include spending extended amounts of time in a natural setting recording my experience in illustration and words to include not only description of what I observe, but also questions I have about what I've noticed, and how I feel/what I'm thinking. In addition, I want to improve my drawing skills as well as my use of watercolor. I like the technique of looking at the bigger picture, yet including a zoomed in version of something that is attractive/interesting to the eye. I am far more comfortable with words than drawing and see myself really putting time into the art component of my entries.
    • Anne
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I've been wanting to start nature journaling for quite a while, but so far have spent more time looking at other's journals rather than making my own.  This class popped up in an email and decided to join in and build a practice of my own.  I love art and love the outdoors, so it's a perfect mix for me. I'm looking forward to trying a variety of styles and techniques to develop my own style!
    • Jessica
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      I was inspired to take this nature journaling class because I wanted to get back outside and notice the little things in nature. I used to do outdoor education, and I wanted to get back outside and learn more about the organisms in my community.
    • Valerie P Stevens
      Participant
      Chirps: 13
      I am interested in doing a daily drawing and observation throughout the winter months.  I love to draw birds and hope to improve with practice.  I make ceramic tiles with birds, so I will include the rough sketches that I make for the tiles.
    • Dorothy
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      I've always been interested in Art and Nature, even as a child I collected stones, bits of moss, interesting rocks, and dried seed pods, pressed wildflowers, even snakeskins that were shed.  I kept a scrapbook then.  Now, I'm retired, and enjoy keeping a watercolor/pen and ink sketchbook.  I've recently learned about keeping a "perpetual" botanical journal, where you can keep and record different nature items on a weekly basis with a page per week.  So for an entire year you could  keep your items posted in one book, with a weekly spread on each page, sketching and recording something and marking the date next to it or simply the week at the top of the page. I think by doing it that way - for me - it wouldn't be overwhelming.  Whenever I have committed myself to sketch daily, life gets in the way and it is hard to maintain.
    • Pat
      Participant
      Chirps: 12
      I am inspired by all the participants in the class.  I have been a long time observer with written journal entries. I have had a long experience working with participants in nature classes so I have a wealth of knowledge about living things.  It is hard for me to take a walk without naming plants, trees, birds and insects.  I think stopping to look closely at a few things in nature will refresh my perspective.  My goals include understanding how to sketch landscapes, learn to add color and I am hoping this will improve my photos, what to look for. I plan to learn something from my granddaughter ( 2 years old) on observing and experimenting. I decided to sketch a few acorns and collected some for Vida to notice.  She tried pulling the caps off . I wonder why but we did find many separated on the ground. Pat
      • Karen
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        Hi Pat,   When my granddaughter was two we also examined acorns.  At that time I tried to personalize what we were talking about.  I am attaching a sketch of that conversation.  The words are: Sarah holds acorns in her hand.  Some wear hats.  I also then wrote a poem about her. IMG_1209 (1)    
    • sondra
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      After retiring I wanted to get back to my first love which is art. I found many beautiful nature journals on Instagram and joined a group - #lgperpetualjournal led by Lara Gastinger that I started at the beginning of 2019. It was nice to see how  others lay out their journals and gave me some ideas.
    • Sue
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      Several things have inspired me to begin nature journaling.  I've always loved nature and admired illustrations in the books I've read.  I teach biology and would love to be able to illustrate some of the subjects that I teach.  I've never practiced drawing and have always wanted to learn. I enjoyed viewing all the journals.  Similar to many other people, I was inspired by Sayna's journal.  I like the idea of mixing drawing with text and the partial boxes that show which elements are connected.  I was amazed by Holly's daily and monthly illustrations.  I would love to be able to do watercolors like that but I have a long way to go to reach that level of skill. I hope to go to Costa Rica next summer with a friend and put what I learn here into practice.
    • shandel
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I have journaled since I could write. But not drawing just words. The watercolors is what caught my attention as well as Liz introducing yourself with "Hey ya'll" then having 3 name's I knew you had to be from my home town Nashville area. I like the first ladies journaling and the way she magnified some items to remember. Thank you for this course!!!!
    • Chloe
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      1. I wanted to try something new. When my grandpa came to me with the idea that we do this course together, I thought that it was a great idea and I definitely want to try it. I do enjoy watching and listening to Nature whether that be while I'm out in a walk or just sitting on my back patio. Also, I wanted to build my art skills and skills to listen and observe small details. 2. I enjoy being able to have a peek into people's journals that have more experience with this than I do. I loved all the ideas especially the ones that had lots of drawings. The last Lady on the first video was one that really stuck out to me, I thought it was cool how she set a goal to draw something every day and later realized that was too big of a goal so she changed it. Her work was also very high quality and I liked the way that she wrote her titles and dates. I want to try making my work look very high quality while also being understandable. I also want to try and stretch my skills with fonts titles and writing. 3. I have done some bullet journaling before and this reminds me of a lot of it. I took color swatches of all of my watercolors at the beginning which is something that people who are into bullet journals do. I think it's cool how we can mix different skills to create something so beautiful.
    • Jennifer
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      1. I am a naturalist, and have a deep interest in the nature world.  I have kept seasonal records about the woods and wetlands where I live for decades.  A few years ago I started reading more about nature journaling, and it seemed like a nice way to make what I was doing more creative, and to include more images in my journals.  I am a biology teacher as well, and have had my students use nature journals in the classroom. 2. I like the journals that include a great deal of information and observations in addition to the drawings - like the first journal shown.  I am not comfortable with my drawing skills, so I also like to include text.
    • Judith
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      Hi! I was one of the first to graduate with an environmental education degree from Cornell.  My career took me in a different direction, but I have never lost my love of nature and have fond memories of spending hours on field trips observing plants, animals, insects, weather patterns, etc.  Now that I have retired, I want to return to my first love.  I love to write, but don't feel confident in my ability to draw or paint.  I took a class with Claire Walker Leslie about 22 years ago.  I was the only real beginner in the class, but I learned so much from Claire and from all of my classmates.  I just moved back to Portland, Oregon.  I am beginning to discern what I will do with the rest of my life.  This class will help me get back outdoors (when we have a dry spot in this rainy season) and back to exploring and learning from the world of nature.  I liked Shayna's method of incorporating writing, drawing, questions and learning.  I look forward to my own observation and learning--and hope to increase my skill in faithfully drawing what I have observed! Judith M  
      • Amy
        Participant
        Chirps: 3
        Hi, Judith. I graduated from Cornell with a degree in Natural Resources many years ago. I only got to work in that field for a few years, but not I'm retired and living not far from you in Salem, OR. Maybe we can take a field trip together at some point! Amy
    • Mario
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      1. Lo que me inspiro a sacar el curso fue lo facíl que Liz hizo ver esta posibilidad de tener un nature journal y tambien Kenn Kaufman menciona que una de las mejores maneras de aprendar sobre aves es haciendo sketching. 2. Well, me gusto mucho la idea de poner las fechas en cuadros que se noten como la ultima en el video.
    • Caryl
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I like water color painting and drawing and wanted to get back to them, but also wanted a purpose to what I produced (just my personality), plus ideas of what to paint.  I can compose a story in writing without a second thought, but a blank paper for drawing or painting leaves me asking what I should draw.  I'm a retired Naturalist, so nature journaling was a logical choice to give me the subjects to draw.  And I really want to learn to more about and become better at the "how" of rendering the details on paper of what I see, especially capture the movement and personality of the subject. I like the idea of the economy and effect of using both side of the pages and filling them with text and pictures for a balanced effect.  Decided that free form was more my style than organizing with actual outlined boxes or template structure for each page, other than a heading.   I particularly liked the zoom effect for showing particular details. As a naturalist and in the face of climate change, the lost of nearly 3 billion birds in the U.S. and Canada since 1970s, the ongoing crash of insect populations globally, the unchecked, continued loss of trees and forests, the overpopulation of our planet, the armed conflicts that destroy huge natural areas, and the scientific suspicion that we are living at the beginning of the 6th major extinction era, I want to leave some history behind of how it "used to be."  In addition to my written species inventories, I want to leave an illustrated record about the corner of nature present on my small farm at this point in time, especially its serendipitous moments, and leave my journaling for subsequent owners of the farm, with the hope it continues to be passed on with each change of hands, and perhaps inspires someone along the way to do more to live as a part of nature, not apart from nature.
      • Christine N.
        Participant
        Chirps: 38
        Losses are disturbing but perhaps we can use or own journaling as an educational tool. The present generation will not understand what they are loosing unless they look carefully. I live in a town that encompasses forethought and planning of land use, so, I am fortunate. Is land being built on? Yes, but they seem to try to keep large tracts undisturbed. We have 600 acres that are designated wild in perpertuity that was a joint project with the town, county and state that the high school uses as an outdoor lab.